Do you take many pictures on your phone using portrait mode? I love the clean look of the background falling out of focus while the subject shines. Ever since I discovered this feature years ago, my camera has almost always been on portrait mode. (If you’re a parent, you may know that the one exception to the perfect portrait is a toddler who doesn’t have an off switch.)
I often used to treat my abilities in the social media & marketing world like a photo in portrait mode. My background isn’t in marketing, branding, social media, data, analytics, or any of the other areas of expertise of modern influencers. I have a BA in Intercultural Studies & Teaching English as a Foreign Language (say that 10x fast) and I’m a licensed cosmetologist. So when I began writing content for some of our clients, I made every effort to keep that hidden in the background so that what they’d see in the focused foreground made me seem competent enough. With every month’s proposal, I would stress to make sure that I produced the best possible verbiage and find the most captivating photos to accompany my post so that people wouldn’t find out that I snuck my way into the marketing world on a technicality. That I wouldn’t be found out as an imposter.
Most of us at some point will struggle with what’s known as imposter syndrome. While there isn’t a clear-cut definition of this, the jist is that you feel like a fraud. You think you don’t deserve a seat at whatever table you’re sitting at. That if someone knew the REAL you, you’d somehow be disqualified from your position.
CI serves clients from all different industries, from real estate brokers to bakers to automotive professionals. If I succumbed to my fear of imposter syndrome, CI would have no use for me. Because if I were trying to pass as an expert in any one of those professions, I would 100% be an actual imposter.
But just because I can’t sell a house doesn’t mean I can’t write a beautiful description of a newly-listed rental unit, or entice audiences to try the newest confection at a trendy bakery, or even pique someone’s interest in a car auction despite not knowing the difference between a Benz and a Bugatti.