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Ya Gotta Be Ready If You’re Gonna Catch The Big Wave

January 12, 2021

Young man with huge baseball glove running trying to catch a big wave of water that's flying through air with fish coming out of itblank vertical space, 24 pixels highI contributed to an article on the best motivation tips for entrepreneurs.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

I wrote: “Success is about catching the big wave.”blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

(Listening to the Beach Boys has made me philosophical.)blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

And you’ve got to be ready to catch that wave when it rolls in. You’ve got to be out there on your board.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

You also need to have the skills and the right equipment.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

(If you taught yourself surfing by watching old Frankie and Annette movies, and you’re using an old outhouse door for a board, well, you’re in trouble.)blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

Being ready is doing a lot of things on a daily, or at least a regular, ongoing basis.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

As a freelance illustrator, here are some of the ways I try to be out there on my (drawing) board:blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

1. Do real work every day– not just social media. For me, that means drawing something every dayblank vertical space, 16 pixels high

2. Have a portfolio and keep it updatedblank vertical space, 16 pixels high

3. Have a blog, write for your target audience, demonstrate your expertise, post regularlyblank vertical space, 16 pixels high

4. Promote your work by sharing it on select social platforms (don’t try to be everywhere)blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

5. Write guest posts to get your work in front of more peopleblank vertical space, 16 pixels high

6. Have a niche, be an expert (I specialize in visual humor that helps brands get attention and connect with people)blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

7. Network (for me this means connecting with people on LinkedIn and emailing influencers to let them know I’ve quoted them in a blog post)blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

8. Leave comments (best approach: write something that adds value to someone else’s post and demonstrates your own expertise)blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

9. Be generous (e.g., share other people’s work, send links to articles if you think they would benefit a certain person)blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

10. Research prospects and send them personalized emails
(a lot of work, so be selective)blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

11. Ask for testimonials and get them out there where prospects can see themblank vertical space, 16 pixels high

12. Ask clients for referrals (do they know anyone who
might need your product or service?)blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

13. Include your “process” on your website, i.e., how you work– that’s essential information for a prospectblank vertical space, 16 pixels high

14. Stay in the news (I try to do it by responding to HARO requests: Helping A Reporter Out by contributing to a post they’re writing)blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

15. Periodically review your website and social profiles: are they up to date and easy to navigate?blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

16. Work on personal side projects: we all need a break from the grind: it’ll keep you fresh and (hopefully) saneblank vertical space, 16 pixels high

17. You’re trying to stay visible and top of mind– but think before you hit Enter: everything you say or do reflects on your brandblank vertical space, 24 pixels high

OK!– time to get inspired!– grab your board and watch this motivational video:blank vertical space, 32 pixels high

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About Mark: I’m an illustrator specializing in humor, editorial, branding, social media, and content marketing. My images are different, like your brand needs to be.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

You can view my portfolio, and connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Questions? Send me an email.blank vertical space, 40 pixels highRecommendation testimonial for Mark Armstrong Illustration from Chuck Reese, President, Smartpress.com

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