THE FEAR OF SELF-PROMOTION FOR THE CONSTANTLY NERVOUS

One of the downsides to having to promote my songs or blogs is the need to do exactly that – promote.

I’m not a promote type person. My moniker is not Promotion Paul. At school my fellow pupils would never have voted me as Pupil Most Likely to Promote.

SOCIAL MEDIA SUPERMAN? OR JUST A SHY BOY IN A CAPE?

However, since I somewhat accidentally started song-writing again I have needed to stand up and shout; just a little, to get my songs heard. And believe me, there are a lot of artists out there doing a lot of shouting, on a multitude of platforms, be it streaming platforms such as Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, Soundcloud, or video channels like YouTube and Tik Tok. So much shouting and of course, so much singing. And so many, many songs.

DRESSING UP FOR A PARTY OF ONE

I spend a great deal of time developing a song, making it as strong as I can, and spend hours and expense in a studio getting it as close as possible to how I’ve heard it in my head. I’ll spend considerable time on a video, an essential element for any new song to attract people to it. I’ll put the video on You Tube, and the song released on all major streaming platforms.

Yet when I announce the song on my song-writing Facebook page I’m tentative, almost apologetic. I limit the number of posts about a new song, worried in case the people who have liked or followed my Facebook page get sick of hearing about it. There is actually some sense to that, even though I’m trying to reach new audiences.

But it’s also counter intuitive; if people have signed up for my Facebook page it’s because they are happy to hear about my songs, right? Nope, not in my head. In my head they are simply being polite – even though most people who now follow me don’t actually know me and therefore have made the decision to follow me for the simple reason they like my music. But try telling that to my mixed-up sense of logic.

Doubt concept.

THE WHISPERING BLOGGER

Similarly with blogging there is also the need to get your blog read among all the others saying ‘read me, read me!’ – though usually a lot more politely than that. Blogs don’t tend to shout; they suggest, which suits me better.

But still there is a need to let people know you have published a new blog and for the likes of myself there is the constant voice in my head asking; are people going to be interested in what I have to say? Indeed, what do I have to say? And who do I think I am, thinking people would spend several minutes throughout the noise of a day reading my words, considering my opinion, reading about my life?

But if I’m sure about one thing, it’s that I’m not the only one who has misgivings every time they publish a blog, post a song into the world or give out a part of themselves out for praise, criticism or indifference.

THE POWER OF THE ALTER EGO

It’s almost a prerequisite of anybody who writes to be somewhat introverted, living life from the outside looking in. And so stepping into the limelight and actually saying ‘hey, look what I’ve done, look what I have to say’ is sometimes a strain. A big strain. And if this is met by disinterest then it is even more keenly felt, it just underlines the voice of doubt.

In Susan Cains book Quiet – The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, she refers to a college lecturer who lives an out-going, constantly conversational life but who is, by nature, introverted. His gregarious persona is actually that – a persona. He finds his required way of engaging with the world exhausting, yet to do his job successfully he knows he needs to engage, not withdraw. In fact, he does it so well most people who knew his true nature would, he says, be shocked.

Maybe there is something to be said for developing an online identity that’s more about confidence with just a hint of brashness. There is certainly enough advice out there about how to target song audiences and get more streams and You Tube views, should anyone choose to get strategic about it.

But for me, authenticity and a nice dose of doubt feel more comfortable. Certainly, in the blogging community my experience so far is of a lot of people just helping each other out and there is a virtue in developing a following organically and in smaller degrees. This can work for music as well as blogs.

It would appear then that I have talked myself into continued reservation and tortured hesitancy. Maybe I’m just addicted to it.

Or maybe I should write a blog about it, and wonder whether or not to tell anyone…

8 thoughts on “THE FEAR OF SELF-PROMOTION FOR THE CONSTANTLY NERVOUS

  1. Oh man, can I relate to this feeling! I know that some people don’t struggle with this affliction, and I’m a bit envious. Of course, there’s the “what if they don’t like it?” feeling that so many of us dwell on. Even when we know something is pretty good, it feels a bit egotistical to promote ourselves. At the same time, I suppose it’s a bit of a necessary task if growing an audience is important to the musician, painter, or writer.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m glad for confirmation that I’m not the only one Pete! Americans are perceived as generally being out-going, confident people which can’t make it any easier for you. That said English people are seen as quite reserved which should make it easier for me but it doesn’t! Never mind, a little humility can go a long way.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m with you and Pete on this. My first posts were about my struggles with depression, and I worked and reworked them to the nth degree, fearful of the reaction I would get by revealing parts of me. But I’ve found the blogging world to be an incredibly supportive place, and it has become important for me. Keep doing what you’re doing – you write well and your songs are great!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Thank you very much Clive, and I’m glad to hear that blogging has been instrumental in your hopefully on-going recovery from depression. You were brave in putting yourself out there and I’m pleased that the response has been positive and helpful.

    And your comments on my songs have shown that you are willing to give back too, many thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I recently wrote and published a blog post asking if I was over or underwhelming my readers, but it seems the answers I got were that I published the right amount of posts. When it comes to promoting my books, I’ve only recently created some reusable blocks to insert into some blog posts, but I don’t include them on all my posts. My flash fiction posts are where you’ll see them, and I’m pleased to say that I have had some book sales since including them in posts.

    Mostly, people follow somebodies blog or social media account because they’re interested in hearing what they have to say. Unfortunately, you’ll always get those that follow for a follow and who never come back. But forget about them and do what feels best for you, Paul. You’ll soon find the perfect promotional balance.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think I am finding that balance now Hugh, I only publish once a month usually which suits me as I am getting back more intensely into my script-writing and songs and a once-a-month blog fits into that better. I don’t worry about follows so much. My follows are slowly building, but I only really take them seriously if they comment and follow.

      Your blogs are always pleasing, bright and informative and they never feel like they are being pushed at people. I can’t pretend I always get to read every one but each time I do I enjoy them and they are always nice to dip into. it’s something for myself to aim for.

      Thanks for your comments.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: