Thursday, October 24, 2013

Oh Jeez - Am I Being Pushy? by Brenda Whiteside

We're talking about fears this month. I'm not afraid of ghosts, and I do believe in them. I don't like spiders and snakes, but I wouldn't classify my squeamishness as actual fear. I've already covered my claustrophobia. But I do have a real fear of being pushy. There are family members who might laugh their heads off because when it comes to family and getting my way around the house, well, I might be a bit pushy.

The kind of pushy I fear is what is sometimes needed to sell your product or yourself. People don't like pushy and I want to be liked. Years ago, I sold cosmetics in combination with doing colors. Getting your colors done was a fad and I was a trained colorist. Using eye color and patterns combined with hair and skin tones, I could tell you whether you were a summer, winter, autumn or spring. Your season designation told you what colors your wardrobe should be. I would then give my customer a makeover with the proper makeup colors. The whole service was free, but I hoped to sell them skincare and makeup. I operated out of a salon for a while and the owner told me I had a marvelous soft sell approach. Ha. I had a soft sell approach because I didn't like to sell - to ask or close the deal. I had the same problem when I operated a craft business with my sister. I was dynamite at creating the home decor but had a terrible time getting it sold. It just feels pushy to close the deal.

Now, I'm a published author and guess what? I have to sell myself, have to encourage readers to buy my books. See, I say encourage because asking just seems pushy. And I want you to like me. Today is the third day of five free days for my newest release. It's taken all my effort to figure out how to spread the word and remain non-pushy. I went hot and heavy the first day with posting and emailing. I suppose I should continue, but when does it cross the line into pushy? It's been the most difficult part of being a published author - selling myself.

Amanda in the Summer is free still today and the link is below. Just a brief mention. Not exactly soft sell but hopefully not pushy. Is it?

http://tinyurl.com/mb5cwly

13 comments:

Margo Hoornstra said...

You convinced me. I went over to get my download. Now that wasn't so hard, was it? Seriously, though, you're a woman after my own heart. I'm comfortable when I write, very uncomfortable when the time comes to promote!

Brenda Whiteside said...

See how my soft sell works! LOL thanks, Margo.

Alicia Dean said...

I am also afraid of being pushy...there is a fine line between relaying info and being annoying. :-) I already have Amanda in the Summer, read it and loved it! Best of luck

Barbara Edwards said...

Got my copy. I agree about wondering where the line is. Yours is fine.

Brenda Whiteside said...

Oh yes, that invisible line. Thanks, y'all!

Jannine Gallant said...

Downloaded on day 1. Now to find time to read! It's funny how pushy works some places for me and not others. I tweet my head off and don't care if I'm pushy. But on FB I have actual non-author friends whom I don't want to OD on promo. I think we have to pick and chose our pushy moments. You're doing just fine.

Brenda Whiteside said...

You're so right, Jannine. Social sites will tire of us real soon if we over do it.

Ashantay said...

Have my copy and recommended your book to others. Pushy is as pushy does...self-promotion is not pushy, it's recognizing your own worth. You deserve to do well! We all do! So there. That's my opinion and I'm sticking with it. (Insert grin)

Brenda Whiteside said...

Tell it like it is, Ashantay!!

Vonnie Davis ~ Romance Author said...

I hate this whole self-promo thing. I could never sell products because I dislike being pushed into something I really don't want. So I promote to a degree and hope for the best. I'd sooner promote other writers. I can be pushy over someone else's book. LOL Great post.

RE Mullins said...

Imagine how I feel. I couldn't even sell Girl Scout cookies. I just couldn't bring myself to ask someone to buy something. I haven't changed much...

Alison Henderson said...

I also dread being pushy and am horrible at it. I want to put my new book up for its free days soon, but I'm frozen with indecision over how to make the most of the opportunity while staying within my comfort zone. Probably impossible.

Brenda Whiteside said...

Vonnie, so right. It is easier to promo others. Oh funny RE. I lasted one year as a brownie and probably for that reason. It's a tough balance, Alison. And a lot of work. Good luck.