Self-Marketing Your Brand - Learning from Pros

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by Linda Goin

"Apply some principles for yourself as you market your goods and services"

An avid Mashable fan, Lindatalks about a recent article about marketing brands for clients...and how you can apply some principles for yourself as you market your goods and services.

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Reasons and Rational

If you don't read Mashable, then you're missing out on some hot social networking tips. If you follow Mashable on Facebook, you can learn even more about how their articles are received by readers. When I read their articles geared toward marketing clients, I try to bend those articles to work for me...and how I might continue marketing my goods and services.

For instance, their recent article on 5 Key Benefits of Monitoring Your Client's Brand on Social Media focused on reasons to monitor a client's brand. Those reasons included:

  1. Crisis management
  2. Influencer Identification (platform-dependent)
  3. Building relationships with media and customers
  4. Creative feedback and ad targeting
  5. Competition and competitive marketing

While all those points make sense when it comes to clients, how can you use the same points to monitor your own successes and failures? In this article, I'll point you to several tools that can help you keep tabs on your own marketing, so you can work on your marketing weaknesses and revel in your strengths.

Close Reading

When I was earning my master's degree in history, I learned how to read – not in the sense that I couldn't read in the first place. I learned how to read a book so that I could glean subject matter quicker and more efficiently.

One semester, when I had twenty books piled up for just one class, I asked a professor how I could make it through all twenty books when I had four other classes. Her response? Read the introduction and the summary and – if I had time – read the chapter titles to understand where I could find the most pertinent information for my own argument, then read the first sentence of each paragraph in that chapter.

The point was to find the author's argument and how he/she would resolve the question(s) generated by that argument. When you are creating your own argument, you want to find authors who both agree with you and who oppose your perspective, so you can find every strength and weakness in your proposal. When you read through introductions and summaries, you can easily find those authors who are at both ends of the spectrum...and those are the books that I needed to read more closely.

Close reading describes a careful, sustained interpretation of a brief passage of text. In other words, you may not want to overview everything within a given text, but you may want to explore a certain segment of text that offers vast possibilities. In the Mashable article about key benefits for monitoring client brands, you can skip through most of the article if you want to apply that article's key points to yourself.

In many online articles, you can leap around from link to link to learn what is important to the author in that article. But, in some cases, the links may not make sense, because the author doesn't realize the importance of links and the words that could be linked to make that article stronger.

For instance, if you are changing that Mashable article to fit your needs, there might be two to three links that could make sense for a self-employed business owner.  For myself, these links included:

  1. MarketingProfs (in the credit at top – I had not heard of this site, so I followed the link to learn more)
  2. Influencer identification, which lead to a very interesting article about how to target social media influencers to boost traffic and sales

That's it. I was interested in just two links. Unless you count the list at the bottom of the page, where "More Social Marketing Resources" from Mashable are available. At that list, the first three items made my agenda:

  1. 5 Tips for Managing Your Company's Brand on the Web
  2. 10 Steps for Successful Social Media Monitoring
  3. 5 Tips for Aspiring Social Media Marketers

You choices might be totally different from mine, depending upon your interests and your current knowledge. For instance, you might be interested in the link to advertising online...I'm not interested, as I'm not in the market for advertising online at the moment. But, I may be game later...and, at that point, I'll conduct a search at Mashable and on other sites to learn about my opportunities...as those opportunities seem to change daily.

Linda Goin

Linda GoinLinda Goin carries a B.F.A. in visual communications with a minor in business and marketing, and an M.A. in American History with a minor in the Reformation. While the latter degree doesn't seem to fit with the first two educational experiences, Linda used her 25-year design expertise on site at archaeological digs and in the study of material culture. Now she uses her education and experiences in creating social media environments.

Accolades for her work include fifteen first-place Colorado Press Association awards, numerous fine art and graphic design awards, and interviews about content development with The Wall St. Journal, Chicago Tribune, Psychology Today, and L.A. Times.

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