The essential guide to self promotion for introverts

Mark Schaefer
5 min readFeb 1, 2024

If you’re in the one-third of the population who are introverts like me, you probably have trouble competing in the social media world of constant self-promotion. I look at some of the “me me me” content out there and think to myself “I could never do that.”

Although I probably should.

But it’s just counter to my personality. I just can’t do it. This is one of the reasons I’ve never done online courses. I could not withstand the constant self-promotion it takes to make those things fly. I’ve been successful online in spite of myself!

Self-promotion is necessary … as necessary as taking the time and effort to create works of art or useful products that will change people’s lives.

Because the fact is, people need to KNOW about good things before they can let those good things help them. It is not just your task to promote your work — it is your mission.

I decided to reflect on this today because I figure there are plenty of people in the same boat. What is the strategy of self-promotion for introverts?

Staying in “the box”

A lot of people may tell you that you need to “think out of the box” or even go into personality areas that are scary. This is not a sustainable strategy for a simple reason: most of us are limited by our psychological make-up. Long story short, our mental frameworks are more or less complete by the time we’re 15 years old. That is our “box.” It’s almost impossible to think “out of the box” or re-invent our box despite the gurus urging us to do otherwise.

I’m not trying to be a downer about things but there is a ton of research pointing to the fact that however you were when you were 15, you’re more or less the same way now.

However, the real power to creativity is “combining boxes.” Just because you and I are introverts, it doesn’t mean we can’t add a lot of creative value to the world. We just don’t like talking about it. The key idea here is to partner with people who do like to talk about it!

It works well for me when I am the creative force in a partnership and another person is the promotional force. Use diversity to your benefit!

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Mark Schaefer

Keynote speaker, marketing strategy consultant, Rutgers U faculty and author of 10 books including KNOWN, Marketing Rebellion, and Belonging to the Brand!