The Persistent and Damaging Myth About Introverts and Marketing

Author, media guru, and introvert Jane Friedman breaks down the persistent and damaging myth about introverts and marketing: That is, that they're incompatible. Believe it or not, introverts and marketing can coexist and even thrive.
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I'm getting frustrated with people who say they're bad at marketing and promotion because they're introverts.

(Who is your target reader?)

Maybe this argument was more valid before new technologies came along—when marketing and promotion involved more "getting out there," networking at events and stores, or making phone calls. (God knows I hate phone calls and would be a terrible marketer if that's what marketing was all about.)

Myth About Introverts and Marketing

Myth About Introverts and Marketing

But looking at how things work TODAY, introverts should be over the moon at how lucky we are to live in an age when we can effectively market and promote by:

  • staying at home
  • using whatever tools suit our communication style best (e-mail, IM, Skype, Twitter, Facebook, etc.)
  • crafting and controlling messages to our own satisfaction
  • limiting interaction when needed

I've self-identified as an introvert since I was a child, and test as an introvert on the Myers-Briggs. I know the horror of being told to "think faster." Some people just don't understand—it takes time to fully process what's being said, sort through knee-jerk reactions, thoughts, and feelings, then carefully and thoughtfully formulate a response.

Tendencies of Introverts

But these tendencies of introverts …

  • bad at small talk (but not necessarily shy)
  • preference for small group conversation
  • avoidance of huge social gatherings—or being drained by them

… these tendencies don't significantly impact our ability to be effective at online marketing and promotion. In fact, when you consider that "the only thing a true introvert dislikes more than talking about himself is repeating himself," you have the makings of a superlative online marketer! These days, there's far too much BAD marketing and self-promotion (that amounts to talking, in a very uninteresting way, about oneself), and not enough GOOD marketing and self-promotion, which is about serving an audience.

(Improve your writing or author platform in 30 days.)

Knowing your audience, reaching your audience, and engaging effectively with your audience is more about listening, understanding, curiosity, and good communication skills—not "extroversion" or "introversion."

So, my fellow introverts, you'll need to find a better excuse to explain why you're bad at marketing and promotion!


Sell Books on a Shoestring Budget

You're an author on a tight budget. Or, maybe you've got some money, but you're tired of wasting it on marketing that didn't work. You've poured everything into writing your book hoping to move thousands of readers with your words. You've dreamed, hoped, maybe even prayed, that your book sales would take off. But, that reality has yet to come true. It doesn't seem fair for your dream to die just because you don't have thousands of dollars to spend on marketing. Is selling a lot of books only reserved for the elite authors with big budgets? No.

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