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Should You Be Personal Online?

If you follow this blog you will know that I am a senior who is learning to work online. With all honesty I can say for me this has been a very daunting journey. This blog is my release for some of the stumbling blocks that I have found along the way. It is also a way to share with other seniors working on line the truly great people and courses that I have found.

Last week two different people that I follow online talked about being personal online. Tiffany Dow whose blog I read as a daily routine was sharing with us the joy and sorrow of her son’s graduation. She has always been very open with the details of her family life. She wears her heart on her sleeve and is not shy about letting her readers know about both her triumphs and her failures. Her honest delivery style allows her followers to know her and to trust her. They know if she recommends something that she truly believes it to be a good product. It is also very useful to many when she has a rant about something that is less than valuable.

The other person who spoke (not for the first time) about how being personal has help him build his list and increase his followers was Martin Avis. He produces a biweekly newsletter that I am always eager to open. He talked about how he initially started a business blog and had some followers but when he mentioned something about one of his daughters he had more response than any of the useful business tips. The light bulb went off for him and since then his newsletter has had a combination of useful Internet business tips and talk about what is going on in his life.

Another “Internet Guru” whom I think highly of is James Martell.. He just naturally shares the story of how he and Arlene came to be involved in Internet marketing. They both are so generous with their time and their personal details that it is easy to gravitate to them and to trust them.

This past weekend as I was struggling with my flowerpots I pondered why for many of us the business of being personal is so difficult. I know for myself that it is a combination of shyness, lack of confidence, and fear of sounding very stupid. There is often talk about how budding Internet marketers suffer from inertia and may be the inability to be personal is part of that syndrome.

I am a senior grandma who lives in Vancouver, BC. I am married and have a grown son and daughter. Both my children are happily married and have wonderful spouses. My son has two boys ages seven and five. My daughter has three girls, the oldest age five and the twins are just about two. I am very much a proud grandparent and spend as much time with them as possible. I love to play golf, garden and cook. I am a realtor and I like helping people solve their housing needs however I would like to have a bit more freedom to travel. It is hard to be away if you have real estate commitments.

I started down this road of learning Internet marketing to find a way of generating some extra retirement income. My computer skills were very minimal and if you had asked me a few years ago if I would ever try to learn to work online I would have laughed. My idea of people who did that was that they were all “geeks” who knew some unlearnable secret language.

I think one reason that I find it hard to talk about me and share my life online is that I wonder who would be interested. I am sure that most people would be bored by these personal details. Having stated that out loud I can see that it is a complete contrast to what I feel when I read about Tiffany’s, Martin’s, and James’s lives. I can clearly see that just like me they are ordinary people travelling down life’s road.

The real reason I have been reluctant to be personal about my live is fear. Because the learning of Internet marketing has been such a challenge for me I am terrified that everyone knows so much more than I do and that I will appear very stupid. This is probably very ungrounded, as I know so much more than I did when I started. Is it because I am a senior that I feel so bashful? It is possible as people of my age tend to draw on their life experiences and when they get into entirely new situations they tend to lose their bearings.

In thinking about the personal approach that these three people are taking I think many more people can relate to them than the marketers that send email after email touting if you follow their method you too can drive a Maserati or a Ferrari. There is no doubt that it is nice to make loads of money but some of us would just like to learn the skills to make a decent living working at home. It is much easier to delete these emails without opening them than it is to pass by a message that has a personal tidbit in it. I want to encourage all seniors who are learning Internet marketing to let everyone know who they are and to share their lives. I too will try to be more open about mine.

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