8 Marketing Tips You Can Apply to Your Life and Career

Market your life

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@christinacorso via Twenty20

You don’t need to be running a business or launching a startup (yet!) in order to internalize modern marketing tips. After all, in this day and age, we’re all our own brand and we’re trying to market ourselves to everyone from bosses and clients, to potential romantic suitors. But we’re not just talking about ways to make a good impression. Some of the smartest business strategies out there involve authenticity, making real connections, and gaining insight - things we should all be incorporating into our everyday lives.

1. Embrace What Makes You Different

Companies are advised to steer clear of comparison when it comes to promoting themselves and to instead highlight and advertise what makes them stand out. Whether you’re on a date or in a job interview, embrace whatever it is that makes you unique, and don’t be afraid to vocalize it.

2. Know Your Audience

One of the most important things brands should do is learn everything about their target demographic. In order to appeal to an audience, you need to know who they are. This can be easily applied to just about any social situation in which you’re seeking to impress.

Meeting your partner’s parents for the first time? Ask about their interests or hobbies beforehand, and you might find some common links for discussion.

Finally snagged a coffee date with a would-be mentor? Research their professional experience, so you go in prepared with useful questions to pick their brain. And if you’re trying to woo a potential client, know everything about their company and how or why they’d benefit from working with you.

3. Always Show, Rather Than Tell

In the marketing world, this means using powerful images or advertisements to stir emotion and really display the product or service at hand. This mindset will also benefit you in all aspects of life. Show people you care about them through actions. Show your boss you’re ready for that promotion by crushing that difficult project or by gathering up the data that backs up your progress. Your words can only go so far.

4. Be Authentic

Buyers today can, for lack of a more apt phrase, see through the B.S. When social media bombards us with perfectly curated lives as seen through rose-colored filters, the best thing you can do to earn people’s trust and pique their interest, is to be authentic. That goes for brands trying to sell a product, or you trying to promote yourself. Never try to be something you’re not and you’ll see that everyone will appreciate you more.

5. Don’t Be Afraid to Diversify

Diversification in marketing is about expanding advertising strategies to include different channels and revenue streams. Basically, it’s about not putting all your eggs in one basket in case something goes wrong. It’s useful to establish multiple options and not be afraid to wade into unfamiliar territory. That goes for your life and career, as well. If you have a certain skill set but have always been determined to do just one thing with it, broaden your horizons. See how and where you can apply it elsewhere in a professional sense. And if you’ve always wanted to learn something new? It’s never too late to diversify your hobbies.

6. Build Partnerships

Strong brands build strong partnerships, which serve as a benefit to both parties when each side is bringing something different to the table. Companies use partnerships to reach new customers or enter markets, but partnering up in real life can never hurt, especially in difficult situations. Whether you team up with a coworker or have a close friend to rely on, remember: “A problem shared is a problem halved,” and your buddy might offer a fresh perspective and solution.

7. Take Your Experiences Offline

Having internet and social media presence is pretty non-negotiable for most companies, but many marketing experts advocate offline experiences when it comes to creating something memorable. This is something we all need to hear. Log out of dating apps and LinkedIn, and make connections in real life. While those digital tools are certainly helpful, nothing beats an in-person impression, whether at an old-school networking mixer or on a blind date. Dare we say you plan a WiFi-free excursion with your crew? The best things in life aren’t on your phone screen.

8. Analyze Your Mistakes

Sometimes a strategy just doesn’t hit the mark—and that’s OK. Failures and mistakes aren’t all bad—they’re a great way to glean some insight as to what went wrong and why something didn’t work. That way, businesses won’t make the same mistake twice. This is a pretty straightforward tip when it comes to dealing with your own missteps. Reflect, gain self-awareness, understand what you did wrong and you’ll do better next time. Always use failure as a lesson.

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