How to Deal with Haters as an Entrepreneur

If you’re going to launch a business and promote it online, one inevitable that comes with even the smallest smidgen of success is that you will attract some haters. Why these people insist on trolling the internet and attempting to ruin people’s days, I really do not know, but it seems to be an unavoidable fact of life, unfortunate as it may be.

Now, for many new entrepreneurs, especially women, promoting ourselves can feel super awkward and make us self-conscious enough already. Add these haters into the mix and it can make it really difficult to push through and keep promoting like crazy. So, in an effort to keep your head in the game and keep you efficient instead of wasting time worrying about that nasty comment on your last blog post, here are some tips for dealing with haters. It’s fluffier than my normal stuff, I know, but this isn’t just about making you feel warm and fuzzy again, it’s about learning to efficiently deal with the obnoxious comments people leave so that you can get back to getting ish done.

Now, the first step to dealing with haters is to make sure you distinguish between actual haters and people who have legitimate complaints or are leaving constructive comments that just happen to be negative. People with legitimate complaints or constructive, albeit negative, comments are not haters and should not be treated as such. These are people that you need to reach out to to figure out how you can fix their problem and improve your service or marketing.

True haters do not have legitimate complaints or constructive criticisms, they just have nastiness to spout. Once you’ve identified someone as  a true hater, I see two ways of dealing – one is the mature way, one is the immature way, and in all honesty, you’ll probably want to use both — just make sure to keep the immature way private.

The immature way to deal is to be a hater back – but only in your head. Remind yourself that someone who has nothing better to do than troll the internet and make nasty comments is probably not someone whose opinion you care about. Convince yourself that the person making that comment is a complete loser and that they’re only doing this because they can hide behind their computer. If they had to say that to your face, you could tell them where to shove it. Think about all of the awesomeness that you have in your life and that they more than likely don’t.

Feeling better yet? Good. Now let’s move on to the mature way to handle haters.

The mature way to cope is to wait a little while to cool off and then to respond if, and only if, you can rationally, succinctly, and confidently falsify whatever claim was made without sounding defensive. Given the nature of haters’ comments, that may be impossible to do. So, if you can’t respond in a clear, concise, and convincing manner that will end the conversation immediately, just don’t respond. Haters don’t deserve your time. Forget about it, go read a few of the nicest comments you’ve received to pump yourself back up, and then move on.

In all reality, you’ll probably use both techniques. Throw some haterade back at the punks in your mind, take a breather, reply if you must, and then read some kind words from others and move on. Never let these people ruin your day. It’s actually a really positive thing to evoke strong reactions like this because in order for some people to absolutely love you, you have to have enough of a personality that others will absolutely hate you. So screw them and get back to work.


Now I want to hear from you – as long as you’re not a hater 😉 What are the best tips or strategies that you’ve heard or used to deal with haters? Please let us know in the comments section below.

If you liked this post or think it would be helpful to someone you know, please share the love by liking it and sharing it now.


How to Create Target Customer Personas to Maximize Your Marketing

Understanding who your ideal customer is, where he or she is, and what he or she is motivated by is key to a successful marketing strategy. If you don’t understand who you’re selling to, it will be pretty difficult to sell. Therefore, creating target customer profiles or personas can be a great way to get started with your marketing strategy development.

Customer personas are quite common in the development of marketing strategies and they’re basically character sketches designed to help you understand your customer and his or her needs and motivations.

To create one, begin with some solid market research so you will be basing your persona on facts instead of just making things up. If you’re not sure how to begin with conducting market research, you can check out my video about that topic.

Next, you want to keep the information you gained from market research close at hand and sit down and begin brainstorming about your ideal customers. You can start with the easy stuff like demographic information: is your customer male or female? How old? What type of job do they have and how much money do they make? Are they well educated? Where do they live? What is their family structure like? Then start moving on to deeper information about the target customer’s personality and motivations: What are their morals and values? What does a typical day look like? What do they do in their free time? What are their habits and likes – i.e. is this a vegan yoga addict or a martini-drinking club-hopper? Do they want to go to the spa on the weekend or go hiking and camping? Where do they hang out and who are they there with?

Be as detailed as possible when you describe your target customer. If you need help structuring the brainstorm, grab my Ideal Customer Worksheet to help you. It’s over on the Free Downloads page.

Once you’ve created a full persona for your ideal customer you can use that persona to inform your marketing strategy because now you understand who it is you’re selling too. If you want this person to actually buy from you, you need to look at their lifestyle and target your marketing so that it hits at the right time in their buying schedule, appeals to their needs and desires, and fits in with their lifestyle and self-image.

When you come up with ideas for new marketing campaigns, go back to your ideal customer persona and think, “Would this campaign appeal to this customer? Would they see it? Would they remember it? Would it motivate them to buy?” If not, it’s not going to be a successful marketing campaign and you need to go back to the drawing board.


Now I want to hear from you: Who is your ideal customer and have you used personas in your marketing planning in the past? Let me know in the comments section below. 

Did you like this video? If so, please remember to like it and to share it with anyone whom you think would it find it helpful. And don’t forget to follow me on social media and sign up for my newsletter so you never miss any info that will help you grow your business.


Why Entrepreneurs Must Have a Social Media Editorial Calendar

Social media seems pretty straightforward and simple on the surface, but it’s incredibly easy to let it fall through the cracks when there are a million different balls you’re juggling in your business and you haven’t created a clear plan. When developing your social media strategy, it’s important to create an “editorial calendar” for yourself identifying what you’ll post, on which platform, on what day, and at what time.

You want to draft the schedule to keep yourself organized for a few reasons:

Firstly, it’s important that you keep your social media properties up to date. If you go weeks without posting, the potential customers that visit will notice that inactivity and wonder if you’re still around or if you’d be responsive to them if they became customers.

Secondly, you want to space out the different types of posts in a logical manner. You shouldn’t post 27 photos in a row and then not post another photo again for 3 months. The goal is to keep your social media followers interested by providing variety and quality. When you create a posting schedule, you’re more likely to strategically share the different content you curate as opposed to just randomly posting.

Along the same lines, it’s important to have some consistency in how often you post. If you post everything real time as you see it or think of it, there will be days when you post 15 times and then weeks when you have nothing to share. Again, that’s not good for building customer trust, so you want to curate your content constantly but schedule when you share it strategically.

Finally, if you create a plan you can determine when the most effective times to post various content are in order to receive the most engagement from your followers. While you can and should look up statistics about when users are active on the different platforms, this varies so greatly between groups that it’s important you do some of your own testing. As you post, track what posts get the most engagement and note any patterns: times of day, days of the week, types of posts, etc. Then use that information to adjust your strategy and give your followers more of what they want, when they want it.

To help you out with your content scheduling so that you don’t have to sit online all day every day, as well as to help you track engagement, I highly recommend utilizing one of the many services that can integrate all of your social media platforms and allow you to schedule posts in the future. I personally use Hootsuite but there are many similar platforms out there and whichever you’re most comfortable with is the one you should use.

*** UPDATE*** As I mentioned in the original post, I use Hootsuite for my social media management and when I shared this post with my social media and business networking communities, they all seemed to say that Hootsuite was their favorite tool as well. If you’re interested in giving Hootsuite a try, click here and you’ll get a 30-day free trial of their pro version. This is an affiliate link, meaning I will get paid if you purchase through this link. I want to be totally upfront about that, but I also want to make clear that I am promoting Hootsuite because I use it and love it, not because I get paid.


Now let’s hear what works for you: Do you have an editorial calendar for your social media posts and how far in advance do you plan? What’s your favorite social media management tool – Hootsuite, Buffer, or something else? Let me know in the comments section below what works for you.

If you found this video helpful or interesting, please spread the word. Like it and share it with someone whom you think would benefit from the information and I will be hugely appreciative.


How to Conduct Market Research for Free

Last week I walked you through the basics of creating a solid marketing plan that you can use to promote your startup or small business. Much of what that marketing plan is built around is comprehensive market research, so I thought I should give you a little more detail about where to get some of the information you’ll be attempting to dig up about your ideal customer as you begin to work on your marketing plan.

Many entrepreneurs are afraid to dig into doing market research because they don’t know where to begin and fear that the only way to get good data is to pay a market research company a ton of money. When you’re just starting out with planning your business, however, you can do a ton of very effective market research yourself, for free. Check out this week’s video to learn about some of the best tools out there for getting market research without spending more than you already do for your internet connection.

How to Create a Marketing Plan for Your Startup or Small Business

When you’re just launching a company or you’re trying to grow a small business you don’t have the massive marketing budget or penetrating brand recognition of major multinationals. Developing a solid marketing plan is key to successfully bringing in new customers and building a thriving business. Watch this week’s video to learn the basics of creating a solid marketing plan for your business’ success:

How to Get Your Business in the Press Using HARO

Naturally, one of the biggest struggles for any new business is marketing. They don’t have the name recognition they need but they also don’t have the money to fund major marketing projects or pay for a public relations team. That’s why entrepreneurs have to learn a few tricks to try to get their names out into the press and in front of potential customers and one of those tricks is the service Help a Reporter Out. Watch this week’s video to learn what HARO is, why you should be using it, and how to get started.

Update: I got a note from the folks over at MonkeyLearn who said, “we recently discovered that some experts sources are using MonkeyLearn to create personalized alerts for HARO requests. This helps them speed up the process of answering relevant HARO queries and save time. With this in mind, we wrote a guide about automating this process in four easy steps (without writing a single line of code).”

I haven’t tried it yet but I’m interested in anything that helps me save time so I wanted to share. Let me know if you give it a try and find it helpful. Again, here’s the link to their guide


Using Marketing Partnerships to Promote Your Business

Marketing partnerships are a great way for business owners to amplify their marketing reach without creating much extra work or expense. The basic idea is to find another business whose customers are the same as yours but that offers a complementary – not competing – product or service. Then you team up and both help promote the other to all of your customers.

This tactic can be hugely successfully without too much effort, so check out the video below to learn how to implement it:

How to Measure Your Social Media Efforts’ Effectiveness

Because social media only costs in time and not in clear, clean dollars, the ROI is a little more slippery and many business owners don’t bother to track if their social media strategies are succeeding or not. But time is money, so you need to know if you’re wasting it or spending it wisely. To make sure you know whether or not your social media efforts are time well spent, here are a few basic ways to track if your social media efforts are being successful or if you need to reevaluate:

The point of all of these metrics is to make you aware of what is and is not working so that you can adjust your strategy. Remember, this is about taking a step back so you can improve your strategy, i.e. work on your business instead of just working in your business.


Tips to Promote Your Small Business or Startup with Press Releases

As time goes by more and more new avenues for promoting your business emerge: social media, webinars, youtube – but as we incorporate these new tools into the marketing arsenal, we don’t want to forget about some tried and true promotion options. One of those oldies but goodies is the oft forgotten press release.

Press releases have been around forever, but nowadays in addition to still being a great way to get the word out about what’s going on with your company they’re also an awesome tool for improving your SEO. With that said, here are some tips for creating great press releases so you can be sure everyone knows about your company’s latest news:

  1. Remember that a press release is only for happenings that are actually newsworthy.
  2. Take the time to write a release that is thorough but concise and is well-written.
  3. Don’t forget to include complete contact details in your press release.
  4. Remember to distribute your press release as widely as possible.

With any luck, you’ll get an actual story written about your company or product and even if you don’t, you’ll get some lovely backlinks to your site to help your SEO – just remember to make sure your release is optimized.

For more details on the tips above, check out this week’s video:

Have you successfully utilized press releases to promote your startup or small business? If yes, please let us know what’s worked for you and share your top tips for press release success in the comments section below!

How to Get Over Self-Promotion Shyness So You Can Market Your Small Business or Startup Successfully

Many entrepreneurs and small business owners, especially women, feel a bit uncomfortable with tooting their own horn to promote their business. But getting the word out is key to success in business, so here are a couple of tips to help you get over this self-promotion shyness and start telling the world about the amazing product or service that you have to offer:

Have you ever struggled with self-promotion shyness? If yes, please share below how you’ve managed to deal with it and to effectively promote your small business or startup. I’d love to hear everyone’s tips!

Do you know anyone who struggles with feeling good about promoting him/herself  and his/her business? Share this post and maybe you’ll help them get over it, get out there, and get more business. e.d