Self-Marketing: The One Tool You’re Not Using
Hello, independent entrepreneurs. Let’s talk about your business. You’re doing everything right: you’ve got a great product, a great website, and you’re on social media.
But you’re still not selling as much as you hoped you would.
Why not? While you might be active on Facebook or Tumblr, you’re not on a social network that has over 25 million enthusiastic users that could be really interested in your product or services.
And that social network is LiveJournal.
Go ahead. Get out the jokes about how LiveJournal is the passé home of emo teenagers blogging about their feelings. I know you’re storing them up, so let them out.
But LiveJournal’s worldwide Alexa rank floats between 85 and 100, and the US rank generally sits somewhere between 220 and 225. While it might not be Facebook’s rank of 2, that’s still one heck of a relevant website. Now that the jokes are done and the numbers are on the table, let’s get down to why if you work for yourself, LiveJournal is worth your time.
LiveJournal loves niches.
Make cool necklaces like this? Let other jewelry fans know.
If you’re a fan of something, there’s a community about it on LiveJournal. Jewelry making? Yep. Freelancing? Sure. Star Wars? Of course. Once you discover and locate these communities, you’ve just tapped in to an entire potential buying market.
And make sure to cover all of your bases. If you make Star Trek-inspired jewelry, then join communities about Star Trek and about jewelry. All that’s left is to join the discussion and find natural ways to mention your products or link to your Etsy shop.
LiveJournal promotes community.
When you’re digitally surrounded by people you have something in common with, you really start to develop a bond. Other users become interested in you as a person and what you do for a living. “Oh, it just so happens, I’m a freelance blogger…”
Communities genuinely want to help out their members. They’ll post relevant information, job opportunities, and allow plenty of ways to network. Writing posts and commenting on others are a great way to showcase your skill or product without turning it into a sales pitch. (Hint: You can always link to your personal website on your profile page.)
LiveJournal inspires ideas.
LiveJournal: So much more than fan fiction and sad high schoolers.
You never know when or how inspiration will strike. So whether you’re indulging in a lengthy discussion or someone just posts a random comment, LiveJournal is the place to be for inspiration. When you’re surrounded by like-minded individuals, people will say things that are relevant to your interests.
Maybe someone has a suggestion for a product they’d like to own – you could make it. Maybe someone cracks a joke about the economy – you could turn that into a great blog post. Someone asks for financial advice – you could be that advisor. Personally, I’ve gained ideas for blog posts, short stories, crafts, and graphic design all from interactions within my distinct LiveJournal communities.
The social blogging network is free to join, so the only thing that you could potentially lose is a few hours of your time. And at the very least, you can gain a backlink to your personal website.
But I encourage you to branch out and explore the different communities within LiveJournal. What was once a dumping ground for teenage angst can now be a fun way to network and drive personal sales.
Big brands? This probably isn’t the best place for you to connect with potential customers, but brands like Disney have promoted the popular “writer’s block” prompt and found new fans and impressions that way.
Have you used LiveJournal before? Have you ever used it to help build your own personal brand?