Marketing for Introverts: What You Need to Know

by Corey Pemberton 8 Minutes

MarketingAlone time is your friend. It energizes you. There’s nothing you love more than shutting yourself away to work on an exciting project. You reflect, create, and use your skills to make the world a better place.

But what about marketing the end product?

As an introvert who thrives on solitude, this might sound like a nightmare.

It doesn’t have to be, though.

You can use your introverted nature to work for you instead of against you. You can make the valuable business connections you need and find your audience – without driving yourself crazy.

Keep reading to find out how!

Marketing for Introverts Can Be Exhausting

We introverts would love nothing more than to focus on creating top-quality products and let “marketing” take care of itself.

Unfortunately, reality doesn’t work that way. The audience you need to reach is distracted and overwhelmed. Your competition is getting fiercer by the day. Quality products and services are necessary, but not sufficient for success. We have to be proactive and get the message out.

This puts introverts between a rock and a hard place. We know marketing is key. But the very process of it – the constant social interactions and building relationships – completely saps our energy.

We do the best we can serving our customers and trying to self-promote. But struggling day after day, when it destroys our energy, is a recipe for frustration and burnout.

A Lot of Marketing Advice Is Geared to Extroverts

For many introverts, the thought of marketing sounds like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. Wouldn’t extroverts do it better? You know, the charming guy or gal who thrives on small talk, mixers, and meeting new people?

Having this impression is completely understandable. Some of the most common marketing advice (stuff that’s been around for a while) urges us to attend networking events, cold call local businesses, and hustle at trade shows. These large social events, according to conventional marketing wisdom, are where the most valuable business connections are made.

Those conventional marketing strategies are well-suited for extroverts. It’s not that they’re innately more talented marketers. It’s that extroverts feed on those rapid-fire social interactions. When they’re excited and energized, it’s easier for them to make an impact.

Changing Your Strategy

The rise of new technologies and digital marketing are reinventing the concept of what it means to be a “good marketer.” Now, by adjusting your strategies, you can spread your message without forcing yourself through experiences that drain you and feel untrue to your nature.

The following marketing tactics will help introverts conserve energy and reach their audiences more effectively:

Focus on Inbound Marketing

marketing for introvertsImage credit: Gavin Llewellyn

While forcing yourself to get out there and promote can be effective, it’s no longer a necessity. You can use digital tools to attract an audience instead.

Inbound marketing is powerful. You get more control of the interactions because you decide when the messages go out and exactly what they’ll say. With time, a modest website can become a hugely-profitable client magnet.

There are so many options available to explore:

With a combination of the tools above, you can distribute the right message for your prospects no matter where they are in your sales funnels.

It still takes hard work to create compelling inbound marketing messages, but it’s much less draining than outbound marketing because it scales. Thanks to the internet, you can create one piece of content and reach thousands (or even millions) of potential customers. The process is more attractive for introverts because you get to create these messages from the quiet of your office instead of at a chaotic networking event.

Find a Medium That Works for You

communication mediumPhoto credit: Alejandro Escamilla

Most extroverted-oriented marketing strategies rely on real-time conversations and persuasion. As an introvert, those communication methods might not feel like strong suits.

That isn’t a deal-breaker if you’re willing to embrace inbound marketing. Inbound marketing gives you the option to set the tone and communicate with your audience in a manner that suits you best.

If you aren’t a fan of being on camera, you don’t have to create YouTube videos. You could focus on blogging instead.

Don’t like the sound of your own voice? There’s no reason to force yourself to podcast. You could master social media and pull in big business.

Many introverts are natural writers because they prefer to think deeply before communicating, and they’re always observing the world around them. Inbound marketing offers writers numerous options to make use of that talent.

Choosing a medium that suits you best will: 1) make your marketing much more likely to get done, and 2) make your messaging more effective.

One caveat: don’t choose your medium blindly without any research into where your target audience interacts online. If you create a killer YouTube series, but hardly anyone in your audience watches videos, you’re wasting your time.

Set Aside Time to Be Alone and Recharge

solitudePhoto credit: Pixabay

I can’t stress this one enough!

Running your own business has a way of throwing your life into a whirlwind. You have to serve customers and clients, develop new products, handle admin stuff, and… oh yeah, find more customers.

With so many demands on your time, opportunities to relax can slip away. You’re marketing, but you’re miserable (and ineffective) because you haven’t built in enough time to recharge. Giving yourself some alone time is crucial. Otherwise the constant social interactions will leave you completely drained.

How can you make this happen?

You could set a fixed schedule and limit your work to strictly designated hours. You could avoid all email and client interaction during the weekend. You could even set aside specific times to do a lot of marketing at once (a process called “batching”) and then give yourself a few days to chill.

You probably already know what relaxes you and satisfies your introverted nature, whether it’s reading, getting outside, doing something creative, or whatever else. One thing that works well for me is to schedule my recharge time. It’s so nice to see “take a long walk” blocked out on Friday afternoon. And because it’s scheduled, it’s much more likely to get done.

Automate Your Process (or It Won’t Get Done)

automate your marketingPhoto credit: AndGra

The thought of marketing probably isn’t exactly enjoyable to you. You understand it has to get done at some point… but do you really need to do it right now?

It’s human nature to put off these unpleasant but mandatory experiences. If you’ve ever had to get a root canal, serve on a jury, or send in a quarterly check to the IRS, I’m sure you know what I mean!

This happened to me so many times with marketing it’s embarrassing. Sure, I had great intentions, but I never seemed to get it done after all the emails, admin stuff, and client work. I’d push off marketing until the end of the day. But I’d always be exhausted by then, and the last thing I wanted was to do something I knew would deplete my energy even more.

My biggest mistake: I didn’t have a system. Without a process in place, I’d just keep putting it off and promising myself I’d get to it “later.” Yeah, right…

Now I set aside Fridays for exclusively marketing. Because I’m able to batch the process and create a lot of content then, I can use automated tools to distribute it throughout the rest of the week.

The better you can automate your process, the less you’ll have to worry about forcing yourself to market when you’re already overwhelmed.

These key tools can help:

  • Email autoresponders. Tools like GetDrip are awesome because they let you load up a series of emails to be sent in sequence. This allows you to follow-up every few days after someone joints your list… without even thinking about it once you get the series in place.
  • Social media management tools. Tools like Buffer and Hootsuite allow you to write social media posts in advance and drip them out strategically over different platforms.
  • Scheduling blog posts. Most content management systems, like WordPress, allow you to queue up multiple blog posts and set them to be published at a specified future date.

If you need help getting a system in place or applying it, consider outsourcing this. The peace of mind and freed up energy are more than worth it!

Do What You Do Best – Listen

introverts listenPhoto credit: Fe Ilya

Introverts listen more than they speak.

In other news, the sky is blue and rain is wet!

But this tendency is worth exploring further because it has powerful marketing implications. A lot of business owners feel pressured to do whatever it takes to get their name out there, even if that means churning out countless pieces of content.

The idea is this: the person who “talks” the most and the loudest wins the customer. That’s a misconception. Your audience is much more likely to respond to marketing that’s tailored to the specific issues affecting them.

That’s where your listening skills come into play. Forums, question and answer websites (like Quora), blog comments, and social media are goldmines of insight into your target audience. You can find the unresolved pain points and let those guide you on what kind of marketing to create!

While your competitors try to shout over each another and wear themselves out, you can be more strategic and meet your audience halfway. By discussing topics they’re desperate to hear more about, you don’t have to shout to get their attention.

Don’t Try to “Be Everywhere”

be everywherePhoto credit: YouTube

You already know how constant social interaction wears you down. That’s why I want to pull out my hair whenever a marketing guru urges new business owners to “be everywhere!”

A strong presence on multiple platforms (blogs, social media, podcasts, etc.) draws a wide audience and creates different avenues for them to connect with you. But it makes a lot more sense for a large, well-funded business to pull it off than a one-person shop – especially if that person is an introvert.

You only have so much time and resources. As an introvert, if you spend half your day trying to be everywhere on multiple platform, you’ll end up totally exhausted. Your marketing won’t work well because it’s scattered and inconsistent.

Start by focusing on one (or two) platforms where: 1) your target audience likes to hang out, and 2) the medium suits you well. Even with limited energy, this approach allows you to do enough on that platform to get some traction.

Once you’ve made an impact on one platform, you can brainstorm how to branch out into another. The ideal solution for introverts might be to outsource the project once the demands on their energy are maxed out. In this way you can leap frog from one platform to the next, using your momentum to keep building traction without running yourself down.

Better Marketing with Less Hassle

Being an introvert doesn’t have to be a marketing disadvantage. You can actually use your personality traits to connect with your audience like never before.

By incorporating more digital marketing strategies, you can forge deep relationships and grow your business – without running yourself down with constant in-person interactions.

Are you an introvert? If so, how do you navigate the demands marketing puts on your energy? Please leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you!

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by Corey Pemberton
Corey Pemberton is a freelance copywriter and blogger who helps small businesses and software startups get more traffic and conversions online. You can find him on his website or follow him on Twitter.