Some people assume that introverts, who recharge their energy best when alone, naturally shy away from being in the public eye.
That is not true.
As an introvert, you enjoy getting recognition for a job well done, and you probably understand the benefits of getting your business better known. However, certain aspects of publicity can feel tricky and paradoxical for you.
Your biggest conflict is summed up in the word “exposure.” On the one hand, it means that people have heard of you and your business. On the other hand, it implies that all your flaws are revealed to the world, and you stand open to the judgment of everyone. Horrors!
My fondest fantasy is to be able to go through the rest of my life being invisible. That’s safe and comforting. Yet I’ve mastered the art of earning publicity and help others step happily (and profitably) into the spotlight. Here are tips for seeking publicity if you consider yourself reserved, essentially a private person, or shy.
First, pursue print more than broadcast publicity.
Interviews with newspaper and magazine reporters are much more forgiving and less stressful than those for radio and TV. For print, you can take a bit more time to get your thoughts together when you’re asked a question, and you don’t need to worry about how you look or how your voice sounds while you’re answering.
Second, draw boundary lines to protect your privacy.
Unless you are a Hollywood celebrity or involved in a sensational crime, you normally get to create some limits to publicity. For example, you can be photographed at the office or in a public place rather than at home with your family. You can stick to publicity opportunities that highlight you in your professional capacity.
Third, team up and put your partner in the spotlight.
When the second press release I ever wrote sparked interest from the Wall Street Journal, we agreed that my more talkative co-owner was the one who would talk to the reporter. Likewise, it was my co-author, rather than I, who appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show. I was happy to applaud her from home.
Fourth, get famous as an expert.
Instead of wanting to be famous for no reason, introverts prefer to get known for their abilities and accomplishments. Writing articles and books, distributing press releases, and sharing your perspectives in interviews are strategies that better fit your personality than angling for a mention in the category of “who is who around town.”
Fifth, get famous as a listener.
Introverts generally listen better than extroverts, and you can take advantage of this strength to become known as a gifted interviewer or a probing conversationalist. Teleclasses, podcasts, and radio offer accessible venues for this type of personality strength.
Contradictory as this sounds, you can engineer publicity that makes you a public figure and a “name” while keeping yourself relatively cocooned within your personal sphere. I once asked Jay Conrad Levinson, author of the “Guerrilla Marketing” series of books, which sold more than 20 million copies worldwide, whether people recognized him and stopped him in airports or restaurants. Almost never, he said.
So get prepared to enjoy your 15 minutes – or 15 years – of shining in the spotlight!
And speaking of spotlights, in the next lesson we talk about video marketing as a way to get noticed.