When Introverts Sell
I grew up in a fairly rural part of New Jersey. My street was three-tenths of a mile long and zoned for only six houses. Each house had a long driveway. The next street to the North was a five-minute walk away, and it, too, had only a handful of houses. My best friend lived on the next street to the South. All three streets were pretty hilly.
Now picture what it was like selling cookies or magazine subscriptions as a child. My friend’s street was off-limits, and hitting just two streets with at best a dozen potential targets took a full afternoon. Kids, this was before the internet. I couldn’t get my mom to share a post about whatever I was selling on her Facebook page. Not that she would have, had Facebook existed back then. She placed the responsibility of selling squarely on my shoulders.
I would diligently go out on a sales hike. I’d ring doorbell number one. No answer. Ten minutes later, I’d ring doorbell number two. And be greeted by someone not at all enthused to see an out-of-breath kid with a sales sheet in her hand. Some people don’t like to be disturbed, not even for Girl Scout cookies. Click To Tweet As a person who wasn’t comfortable disturbing other people, I sympathized with such homeowners. I never won any of the prizes they offered to the students who sold the most crap. The moral of this story is introverted kids shouldn’t be forced to sell things. Especially when they live out in the country.
It should come as no surprise that I didn’t choose a career in sales. Imagine my surprise upon learning that being a freelance musician or an author involves a lot of selling. And, while I would have thought the internet would make selling easier, the truth is, reaching out to the same base of followers yields minimal results. Social media has a voracious appetite: make some friends and it craves more.
Sharing is Caring
Do you remember the Faberge commercial from the 80’s with the line, “And they told two friends, and so on, and so on?” Funny that all of Heather Locklear’s friends look just like her. And how quickly the clones multiplied!
There are plenty of things we don’t want to share: germs, the last brownie, the location of the one car inspection site in northern NJ without lines. But more often than not, we gain when we share. Anything in digital form exists in infinite quantities. Reserves are not depleted each time a cat video becomes part of yet another status update or tweet. Thank goodness! Sorry to post another commercial, but don’t you go all gooey watching this viral video? And then want to share it with someone else so they can go all gooey, too?
My latest blog, Adulting vs. Adulthood, motivated two readers to reach out to me and share their interest in the post. Hearing from readers is meaningful. And when they go and share my links with their friends, I’ve got a screen full of Heather Locklears smiling and tossing their lustrous locks playing in my head. Plus a huge smile of my own.
I’m having a great time sharing my fiction and blogs with you, and I am thrilled you’ve stuck around to read what I write. I’d love to hear from you via an email, a post on social media, or even a comment on my website. If you have friends who would enjoy reading a particular blog post, I hope you’ll share the link with your friends. And maybe they’ll tell two friends… Heck, with all of this sharing, I might just share my last brownie with you.