Ah, the infamous Catch-22 of starting a business!
You can’t get clients because you don’t look “letgit”, but in order to look more “legit” you need the money from clients.
What to do…what to do…
I have an idea!
There’s several things you can do to tweak both your online presence and your daily life to become more of a pro. We’re talkin’ FREE, baby.
Here are seven lovely ways that you can look (and feel) like a money-makin’ pro before you ever land a client.
(Meaning, if you already have clients and you haven’t done these things, it’s time to re-consider!)
#1. Use the same professional photo on all social media sites.
You know how cartoon characters always wear the same outfits?
(There was an episode of Pepperanne—yes, I just referenced Pepperanne—where she opened her closet to reveal several of the same outfit which even my 10 year-old self always found humorous).
Like Pepperanne, you need to “wear the same outfit” online your social media profiles and website.
Ladies – this is especially true if you change your hairstyle every time it rains like I do. Choose a photo or two that you love and be consistent. Or else your peeps won’t recognize you.
Go ahead and update your:
- Facebook Page
- Twitter Profile
- Gravatar (this shows up when you comment on most blogs or sites).
- About Page/ Website
As you’re growing your audience, people will recognize you faster and thus like you more if you use the same photos (with the same hairstyle) in all of your online presence.
#2. Blog, Vlog, Tweet, and Facebook consistently.
Hell, whatever you do, do it consistently.
Clients often ask me how often they should update their blogs.
My answer is always the same: Weekly.
Especially in the beginning.
Do I always blog weekly on the Rule Breaker’s Club?
No. You caught me!
But I do my best. The times where there’s a RBC drought arrive when I’m swamped with client work (money-making work has to come first).
However, you better bet that I know the consequences of not blogging consistently. Consistent blogging builds trust with your readers. They know that they can depend on you and will be more likely to bite on your products and programs, too!
#3. Put some damn pants on.
This tip is more for you than it is for your public relations.
I totally get your resistence to putting on real pants. You like wearing pajama pants to work. (Me too! Mine current ones are pink.) Not having to get all dolled up is one of the well-known perks of working for yourself.
However, let me just say:
If you’re feeling like you need an injection of professional sauce in your life, you’ve got to put your pants on.
Wake up in the morning and behave as though you are going to a job (a fun one!). Take a shower, for Christ’s sake. Brush your teeth. Then put some clothes on that you’d feel proud to leave the house in!
No – you don’t have to wear pencil skirts or suit jackets. (However there’s something quite dapper about an entrepreneur who gets snazzed-up to work from home).
The point is, you need to feel like a pulled together human being—like someone who could walk out in public and wouldn’t mind running into her ex boyfriend.
Go forth and conquer!
#4. Clean up your workspace.
Riddle me this:
Would you be comfortable bringing a client to your current office?
Would you be proud to show off your computer desktop?
If not, it’s time to clean it up! (I showed you how I organize mine, here).
Again, if you’re like me, not many people other than you (and your cat, Phil) will see where you work, so this tip is for your own personal psyche.
(Though I think Phil would even appreciate a uncluttered working environment).
Again, I’m not exactly a candidate for the “World’s Cleanest Office” award. But if you want to see how I cleaned up my workspace, why not check out my article, “5 Steps to a Simplified Home Office”.
#5. Take an hour to sit at a table to eat your lunch like a proper human being.
This is my best, strangest tip for avoiding burnout, being more professional, and striking that elusive “work-life balance”.
Sitting down and eating like a civilized human being is a lesson that I picked up while living and working in France for two years.
Don’t worry, I’m not going to go on an annoying rant about how when I lived in France the people there always sat and ate their meals like proper human beings.
(Ok, maybe a little bit).
Here it goes:
IN FRANCE, PEOPLE SIT DOWN AND EAT THEIR MEALS LIKE PROPER HUMAN BEINGS.
So so so many of us focus on our businesses 24/7. We set yearly goals for our businesses instead of for our personal lives. (I definitely spent more time working on Leonie Daweson’s Amazing Biz Workbook than the Amazing Life one!)
You’re not just a business bot. You’re a human. And you need to take care of your human self, too.
You don’t have to eat anything schmancy for lunch, either. I personally have 3-5 lunches that I rotate as not to get bored. Usually, my lunch consists of leftovers from the previous night’s dinner.
You do, however, need to learn how to transition from work to personal life and back to work again. Pros know how to do that!
#6. Schedule your week ahead of time.
Bingo! Here it is! THE BEST TIP EVER FOR GOING PRO:
Tweet it out to alert the media:
Wanna play with the pros? Schedule your week ahead of time. Not on Monday!
I’ve tried approximately 4,782 scheduling systems. I wrote about my favorites, and I even have a new tip to share with you.
I borrowed this tip from manifesting maven Denise Duffield Thomas and it works beautifully. (This is especially wonderful for those of us who prefer writing things on paper instead of on the computer).
I purchased an empty monthly calendar from a cutie patootie stationery shop in Montreal. But instead of using it as a monthly calendar, I use it as a weekly to-do list. Here’s what it looks like:
I fill out the to-do list calendar every Friday for the next week. Because my tasks are categorized, I make sure to do tasks in every portion of my business, which keeps me from focusing too much on Marketing and forgetting about Finance, etc.
You can get creative with this by using a dry erase board or even making your own chart. Do whatever works for you, darlin’!
#7. Get yourself a proper Work With Me page.
When hot new readers land on your website, is there a page where they can go to find out what you do?
Is it even clear that you’re a business owner?
You need a proper Work With Me Page.
If you want, we can work on it together (though that’s not exactly free, it’s highly highly worth the cost).
But I also offer lots and lots of free resources for creating professional, woo-worthy copy for your website. Snatch up your copy here.
Did you have a nice time reading that article? Other people will too, don’t you think?
(And hell, I certainly appreciate every single share).
Hey hey miss courtney. You know, i have found to be at this point in my biz where i know who i am, i know what i teach, etc but its complete stuckage. It makes me feel a bit like an amateur instead of who i really am which is a professional. The stuckage is in my about page (which in my head is amazing) but writing it gives me ADD. The overwhelm of having to wear all the hats of designer, accountant etc is not my fortay and makes me not do anything. Like total freeze frame. Check out my site…www.jacquiamidon.com and you'll see a simple home page…one blog post written last month, and a blank about page.
Anyway thank you for you posts….they make me want to light the fire under my ass again. I have a voice dammit and i need to get it out there.
LOVED this. Needed it to.
Step one: change profile pics to all be the same.
Step two: make my desk less shameful.
oops, Needed it toO, I meant!
I have this thing about peeking at the to-do lists of people around me. I love learning how other people organize their life, so that shot of your daily list made me feel all warm and fuzzy 🙂 I'll be trying out that strategy in my never-ending quest for the perfect to-do list!! Great post Courtney!
:: Jaqui! I'm working my buns off to create the Total Knockout Copywriting Course (the course version of the service) which I will walk you though, step-by-step how to do every page on your site. I think you'll find it extremely helpful!
:: As always, Marsha, you make me smile.
:: Amy – I do the same thing except with people's apartments 😛
Your tips are always super helpful. Thanks, I need to start everything on this list!!