Most entrepreneurs I know worry about coming off too salesy when they talk about their products. And often it paralyzes them from taking action. Well, friend, that fear came true for me recently and I'm sharing the experience along with some thoughts about it in hopes that this fear doesn't paralyze you.
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Raise your hand if you fear being judged on the Internet. Whether it’s fear that someone will judge how you look, or what you say. That they’ll take something out of context or make assumptions about who you are as a human? That they’ll leave you a shitty product review or start talking trash about you on the Internet, or just reply to one of your emails to tell you they think you suck.
I really do wish we were all in a room together right now because I’m pretty confident that if we were, you’d look around and see the majority of everyone else’s hands up too.
Now raise your hand if this has actually happened to you.
Again, I’m sure many of you have experienced this. And when it does, it can really throw off your game, right? You might start doubting yourself, wondering if this person is right. Wondering if more people feel this way but haven’t bothered to take the time to tell you. Maybe you question if you should even be an entrepreneur at all and you think of throwing in the towel… damn that escalated quickly, right?
And even if you’re at a point in your business, life, or confidence where you‘re able to say, eh… they’re just one person out of the hundreds or thousands who think the complete opposite – it can still sting.
Because, well… human.
And let me tell you. NO ONE is immune. Your favorite product-based business owner or online educator has probably experienced this too. The person you take the time to email or DM to tell them how much you love their product or their content, how much they inspire you or have helped you… also has someone email them and tell them they sound salesy or they suck.
and in fact, this happened to me just a couple of weeks ago which is what prompted me to record this episode.
We recently re-opened the doors to the Lounge Membership and part of that marketing promotion was to run ads to a free resource download and then invite those who downloaded said resource to a free training where we went deeper into the process.
And of course, there were some emails throughout this campaign encouraging subscribers to take the next steps.
But one day, after someone received all of 2 emails from me, the freebie delivery and the 2nd email in the series, they replied to me saying they didn’t like my salesy ass talk, how I triggered them, and that I should be more real.
In that initial moment, you can imagine how I felt, and if this were 20 years ago I may have responded with an equally rude and condescending email. But I took a second to breathe, to take it in and read it again.
What I saw was someone who had been screwed over by coaches and consultants before, something I have 100% been through and even talk about on episode 8 of this podcast, and someone who probably just didn’t jive with my personality.
Ultimately my heart just went out to them because it seems like they were still a little raw from whatever experience they had – and I have 100% been there. So I just emailed back with a few other eCommerce educators that they may like better.
Afterward, I talked to my biz bestie, Nicole Diedrich, vented a little, and then went on with my day. But it was still nagging me a little.
Since I couldn’t really concentrate on big work, I decided to organize my inbox by automatically adding labels to incoming emails because my inbox has been getting crazy lately and I want to make sure I don’t miss the important stuff, like when new email subscribers reply to my emails asking me their #1 burning question – emails I do actually reply to!
So as i was organizing them, first I realized I had missed a bunch when I was buying my first home and moving. If you were one of those people I’m so sorry! I started working my way through them and you probably have a reply in your inbox!
But when I was reading them, email after email were messages from people who had been listening to my podcast, learning so much, seeing results from the things they were implementing, and were so grateful they had found me. Many of them even said they love the way I teach and talk and my voice overall. The exact thing that triggered the person that emailed me.
Look, not everyone is gonna like you. Some people are going to think you’re salesy or being fake, while others are going to love everything you put out or create. Some people are going to appreciate about you the exact thing someone else hates about you.
But guess what?! There are almost 8 billion people on this planet. So while I certainly never want to trigger anyone who is struggling or make them feel bad, I can’t manage the perception of 8 billion people, and neither can you.
So instead… keep being you. The people who love you will find you and the people who don’t will ignore you. And that’s 100% okay. You don’t have to be everything to everybody.
You CAN’T be everything to everybody. And if you’re putting that expectation on yourself, you’re setting yourself up to fail. It’s okay to repel people. It doesn’t feel great… but it’s okay.
And please, don’t misunderstand me. This is not a license to be an asshole. It’s just a reminder that humans gravitate toward or away from other humans for a lot of different reasons. And while at times there might be validity in the feedback we’re getting from people, sometimes it’s actually more about them than it is about us. There is of course a lot of nuance to this, as with most things in life. But ultimately, I just don’t want you to let the negative opinion of one person overshadow the multitude of positive ones from other people.