I learnt a very powerful lesson when my son set up his blog. He was 11 years old at that time.

This lesson was one that I’d heard over and over again but it didn’t sink in until I experienced it myself. It’s a lesson on being authentic.

Authentic writing

I’ve been blogging since 2013 and this is the third blog I’ve set up. The first one was a test blog that surprisingly got a lot of traffic. Then I did a personal development blog that soon ran out of ideas. And then I landed here.

Starting this blog wasn’t an accident. It took time to collect my lessons learnt over the years and find out exactly what it was that I loved talking about (and teaching) and combine it with what people are looking for. The sweet spot was found in giving people information about business.

The challenge with my two previous blogs is that I tried to follow what my blogging teachers were telling me to do, instead of following what successful bloggers do all the time. The former talk about text-book theory while the latter find their blogging voice and run with it.

When I started this blog, I tried out different things from different schools of thought. But I still had to work to get people coming to the blog and no one was sharing the articles.

Then I wrote the article about my son’s blog and shared it with people who have signed up to my e-newsletter. And Bingo! The sharing started, people actually stayed and read the article through, then they shared it. I know this because it’s one of the metrics Google Analytics keeps track of for all blogs.

Even better, I got signups for the e-newsletter from these shares (be still my heart!). It felt as if I had reached bloggers’ heaven.

Being authentic in your business

The trick was so simple, I wonder how I missed it over the years. All I had to do was be authentic and teach through my everyday experiences.

Yes, there is a place (and room) for textbook theory. But what touches people the most is hearing about how you’ve worked through struggles and come out shining (or not).

It’s about being authentic in your business.

And I guess that’s why people like Richard Branson, Oprah, Sara Blakely (of Spanxx), and Donald Trump are such powerful brands. They live their life to the full and have fun working. They talk about their lessons openly and allow people to see them as humans.

Coming back to you, can you do the same with your business?

You don’t have to be fully out there and take risks like Richard Branson. Neither do you have to be brash and bold like Donald Trump. However, there is something unique about you. It’s something so unique to you and your customers and prospects will enjoy hearing about or seeing it.

For example, if you don’t mind media, can you record a video and put it on YouTube? Or create a podcast and host it on your website? In today’s world, you don’t have to wait for the press to find you. You can create your own media presence on the internet and then the press will look for you.

What happens to introverts?

I’m an introvert and I know first hand how hard it is to be fully ‘out there’. Life does get a bit harder for introverts, but entirely doable.

For example, I found my ‘voice’ in writing. And when I’m teaching or coaching, there’s a part of me that takes over and makes the lesson or session fun. It’s only people who are close to me who know just how hard it was to get out of my shell.

If you’re an introvert, I’d suggest that you take baby steps and find your ‘voice’ too. This is critical when it comes to marketing because marketing is the lifeline of a business.

Being an introvert is not an excuse to avoid marketing. Over the years, I learnt to love I love marketing and public speaking – two things that freaked me out in the past.

If you’re an introvert who’s struggling to market your products or services, read this article by C.J. Hayden, a marketing expert and coach.

Your turn

In what areas are you struggling to remain authentic in your business? What is one thing you can do to turn this around. Let’s share and learn together in the Comments.

Caroline Gikonyo
Caroline Gikonyo

Caroline Gikonyo created her dream business and ran it as a solopreneur for 6 years. She then teamed up with 2 other coaches and formed Biashara 360 where she is now the Head of Coaching. As a Business Coach, she's been helping professionals start and grow successful businesses while reducing the time they spend working. You can find out more about her work at www.biasharathreesixty.com.