Imagine this: you’ve just met someone new. It could be at a conference or at your local grocery story — doesn’t matter. You’re chummin’ it up as you both introduce yourselves. A new friend in the works? I think yes. And then boom. The dreaded question…
So, what do you do?
As a freelancer, blogger, or small business owner, that question can be downright difficult to answer. If you’re anything like me, you cringe thinking about the times when you stumbled over your words trying to muster up an answer.
“Oh, I have a blog.”
“I do freelance design.”
Meanwhile, you’re met with blank stares or, possibly worse, “oh, cool.” Yikes. Unless you have a job that people are familiar with, like being an elementary school teacher or a chef, it’s pretty likely that they will have no idea what in the heck you actually do. But all hope isn’t lost, friend. Today, I’m sharing a strategy for how to introduce yourself as a freelancer or blogger that will leave a more lasting first impression.
The big secret to effectively introducing yourself as a freelancer or blogger?
Focus on the value you provide rather than the title you’ve given yourself.
Try one of these on for size:
Instead of saying you’re a blogger, try, “I run an online website geared toward helping creative entrepreneurs build their dream business.”
Instead of saying you’re a freelance designer, try, “I help small businesses build a strong web presence through design and consulting services.”
Instead of saying you have a jewelry store on Etsy, try, “I own a jewelry business that’s focused on environmental sustainability. We only use recycled products in our designs.”
The key is to focus on what sets you apart and how your business adds value to the people it serves. Not only will this make you more memorable to new friends and peers, it will also deepen your conversation and give you the opportunity to elaborate further on what you do.
In addition, make sure your elevator speech uses vocabulary that the average person is familiar with. Unless you’re at a blogging conference where people are familiar with WordPress, don’t go around telling people you’re a “WordPress specialist.” They just won’t get it. You’ll kill the conversation. Focus on ways to communicate your work in a clear, easy-to-understand way.
Lastly, practice! You may have read some of the examples above, nodded your head, and thought, “yeah, I’ll do that.” But simply reading those examples just isn’t enough to introduce yourself and mean it. I highly encourage you to take a moment (right now!) and write down what you will say. Then, take a couple minutes and practice saying it out loud. Do it so much that it becomes natural. Each morning when you’re getting ready in front of the mirror, push your shoulders back, stand up straight, and say your elevator speech. The more you practice, the more natural and effective it will be when someone at your local coffee shop strikes up a conversation with you. This time, friend? You’ll be ready.
Here’s a recap for how to introduce yourself as a freelancer or blogger:
- Figure out the value you provide other people. What do YOU do that sets you apart. How do you help others? Who do you help? Make a list.
- Now, form your answers from #1 into a couple sentences. This is your elevator speech. Make sure your speech uses words that the average person will be familiar with, especially if you’re in a field most people don’t know much about.
- Finally, practice! Practice your speech right after you write it down and then continue to practice it for a minute each day until it becomes second nature. You got this!