“How Do I Ask My Family and Friends to Support My New Business? | Personal Development

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how do I get support for my new business?

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While I love writing about and making FASHION, I also have a deep love for personal development – and leveling up in my relationships and interactions with other people!

As part of that love for personal development, I offer services as a business coach and consultant. I help creatives plan out the nitty gritty and minutiae of their work, so they can tackle big and audacious projects – and grow their reach and income! (More on that here.)

As I work 1:1 with clients, I am sometimes inspired to write a longer form post, like this one! This usually happens when I see a trend emerging, and boy oh boy – am I seeing a BIG TREND right now.

Feel like your friends and family aren't supporting your new business? Here are some tips and scripts for you to use to ask for the support you need!

People are Starting Businesses – And Want Support!

2020 is a wild ride, and a good number of my clients have started new businesses where they sell physical products, and other clients are (finally!) jumping into the world of blogging and influencing to make their dreams happen.

It’s scary to jump into the world of creation and owning a business. There’s a LOT to learn, and it’s totally normal to feel like you’re just treading water as you start out.

“Why aren’t they sharing my links?!”

For clients who are BRAND SPANKIN’ NEW to the world of growing something totally new, an issue can pop up. They’re working their butts off to make something happen for themselves – really going after their dreams – and it can feel like they’re getting crickets from the friends and family in their life.

This can lead to some internal (or external! screaming). Clients are asking themselves, “What is the DEAL?!?!?! WTF, people?!?!?”

Maybe you didn’t expect a parade in support of your new venture, but, dang, you at least thought that people would share a link?!?!

you post links to your business or blog to your personal Facebook, feeling really vulnerable – and nobody comments or likes the post?!!? What’s the deal here?!

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How to Ask for Support for Your Blog or New Business

Okay, I get it. I really do. I cannot tell you the number of times I have asked my very best friends to PLEASE for the love of GOD to comment on my Instagram posts. And, while they do sometimes… It’s not very consistent. And, tbh, if I’ve worked hard on a post, it can feel pretty hurtful.

Below, I’ve shared 4 key ways or strategies to implement when it comes to asking for support of your new business or blog:

#1: The Real Reason People Aren’t Supporting You

Real talk, you want to know the real reason folks aren’t showing up for you? 9/10, or 99.99999% of the time when I have clients who are struggling with this issue is because – 

Wait for it –

YOU are not showing up for others.

Sit with that for a minute, because it can sting.

You’re Not Showing Up for Others. <3

I know I can be a bit brash (sorry not sorry), and I mean this section with the utmost love and adoration for you. I’m not trying to be mean, but I do want to be honest.

You’re not showing up for others in the way you want them to show up for you.

I’d bet $$$ that you are not consistently sharing the links of other businesses, commenting on the posts of other folks and really showing up as a parade in support of other business owners and bloggers. I’d bet that you are maybe sharing a link to 1 business product a WEEK, at most. I’d bet that when YOU scroll social media, you are almost NEVER commenting on posts or sharing new folks in your Instagram feed.

Because folks get a liiiiitttle defensive when I bring this up, let’s quantify what you should be doing:

  • Daily: Commenting on 5 social media posts of other biz owners or bloggers (minimum) a day
  • 2x a Week: Sharing a link to a product from a biz owner you know, and tagging them
  • 2x a Month: Buying from Another Small Business: At least 2x a Month

It’s easy to say, “I’m totally showing up for others! I comment and share links all of the time!” And, you totally may. I challenge you to go back through your social media feeds, and really measure what you’re up to. Every time I ask a client to show me the numbers based on their feeds, they sheepishly come back and say, “I thought I was doing more than I was.”

quote on communication

Calendar Your Support – Calendar Reminder

The only way I’ve been able to ensure that I show up for others is to literally calendar it on my Google Calendar. I literally have reminders in my calendar to go and share a post, a link or shop from a small business.

When that reminder pops up (usually in the evening), I drop what I’m doing and I share a link. This only works if you just DO IT.

“Most of My Friends and Family Don’t Have a Blog or Business?!”

Darling, you have to show up with the energy you want folks to bring for you. If you want your friends and family to be a one-man marching band for you, you have to do that for them.

If they don’t have a business or new blog, this means giving them shoutouts and noting the other cool stuff they’re up to. It means celebrating their new garden, a new recipe, their cute new dog, etc.

Be Authentic & Don’t Expect Reciprocity

It’s interesting when you start doing this, as often the support will come from other sources – it often won’t come from folks who you’re supporting. Be sure to be authentic in your support and shares, or this will fall flat.

If you feel awkward about posting this much to social media, all I can say is, “Get over it.” As a biz owner or blogger, you’re in the business of self-promotion. I wrote a post on that over here.

“So often, we pretend we’ve made a decision, when what we’ve really done is signed up to try until it gets too uncomfortable.”

Personal Development Time: Give & Take

I’m a big fan of personal development (I’ve said that 2x now!), and this book is a game changer for folks trying to figure out how much to give – and how much they can expect BACK,.

I haven’t finished listening to it yet (woot Audible), and I definitely think you should read it // listen to it!

Get it on Amazon by clicking HERE.

Give and Take book cover (white background with black and red text).  This is a great book for new business owners.

#2: Explicitly Explain to People How to Support You

Okay, the next issue on this merry ride of interpersonal drama is this: We often don’t do a good job of explain to our friends and family EXPLICITLY how to support us.

This usually happens because we don’t share the why. We share things like, “Share my posts!” or “Comment on my Instagram!”

how to ask for support as a blogger

But we don’t share why. Why is it important for them to share your posts? Why are comments so valuable? Most people have NO IDEA how ~ the algorithms ~ work, and they honestly don’t get why they make such a difference.

So, let’s try a few scripts:

Instagram Support: “Commenting on my Instagram posts is CRITICAL, because Instagram will show my post to more people if I get more comments. I so appreciate getting comments, and this is one of the best ways to support me. If you don’t have a second to comment, hitting the “save” button also helps me a TON!”

Sharing Links: “If you love me, please share a link to my shop every Monday! It could be a link to a social media post, a blog post or a product. As a small business, getting traffic and ‘new eyeballs’ is critical to my growth!”

^^Note, we didn’t say, “Share a link every week!” People won’t remember, and they’ll share a link every few months thinking it’s every week. (Remember in #1 when you thought you were doing more than you actually were? It’s like that.). Picking a day of the week is much better, because they’ll see it on a calendar and associate you with that day!

Clickbait FTW!

While general social media posts make you feel like you’ve asked for support, chances are a LOT of people didn’t see it, because of the algorithm. If you do post general asks for support, be sure to include a cute cat picture or other clickbait, so folks interact!

Notice in this post I chose a more fiery photo to ask for support, ahem:

Asking for support from friends as blogger - tips!

You Must Have 1:1 Conversations with Your Loved Ones

When it comes to asking for support, asking 1:1 and educating 1:1 is key. It’s not fair to be upset with folks for not supporting you, if you haven’t had an honest and clear conversation with them. It’s not fair to get mad at folks who may have missed your general posts to social media!

Make it a goal to have a conversation with 1 person a week about how to support you, and make sure that you understand how they want to be supported.

Finally, as folks come out of the woodwork to share your links and comment, be sure to thank them 1:1 in a DM. Folks could be watching Schitt’s Creek for the 100th time, and instead they’re using their free time to support you. DM folks 1:1 and thank them for their support!!

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#3: Grow Your Village of Business Owners & Bloggers

Sometimes, we don’t get support from our friends and loved ones because they don’t get it. Or they’re jealous. There’s a lot that can be going on over there, so I’d recommend that you start investing your time into building relationships with other folks who are trying to build sh*t.

There’s almost an infinite number of ways you can find people to join your little village. I like to use Twitter to find new folks to network with, and I’ll also engage with new folks via Instagram when I do my daily engagement on specific tags.

Facebook groups can be a great place to find new people, and well-known podcasts for new biz owners or bloggers can be great!

Growing a community of bloggers

Mastermind Groups FTW

The most effective place I’ve found to network is in Mastermind Groups. A mastermind group is run by a coach, and it includes a fee. People also PAY to be in these groups, meaning they are literally putting their money where their mouth is. These folks are serious. They’re trying to build something, and they can help you level up.

One of my fave quotes is, “You are an average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.” A mastermind group can be a great way to find new folks to spend a lot of time with – raising your average!

I run mastermind groups on a quarterly basis, meeting 1x per week for a call and engaging throughout the week. Hit me up if you’re interested in learning more.

#4: Create Shareable Content

Finally, it is worth it to look over your content and website. Ask yourself, “Would I share this? Is this helpful? What problem am I solving?”

Sometimes, folks aren’t sharing your content, because your content isn’t making their life better. People want pretty images and they want solutions. They want content that breaks up their day, whether because it’s super fun or because it’s helpful.

I don’t want to prompt an existential life crisis here. That said, we need to be sure to be experimenting with content and trying different mediums or ways of sharing. It’s totally fine if a blog post or TikTok fails! Keep experimenting and try something new. Don’t keep doing the same thing and expecting different results.

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Bonus: Leaving People OUT

Okay, here’s the thing. When you start to do a new thing or level up – people can be a liiiittle intimidated. All of the sudden you trying to do things becomes an uncomfortable reflection showing them that they’re not progressing.

Big yikes.

So, if you find yourself getting into little tiffs or big arguments about what’s going on, it may be because they don’t get it.

It’s not your job to make them get it!

It may be prudent, to just stop bringing up your new business and goals with the person who doesn’t get it. When I’ve encountered these situations, I’ve just… stopped sharing the big audacious goals and what’s going on with this person. Unless that person is investing in your business or otherwise involved as a key decision maker, then it’s okay to just stop bringing up what you’re up to!

It sucks, and it’s not fun. But better to do this than to let someone keep pooping on your dreams, or getting sad/upset/ticked off that they’re not supporting you. <3

You GOT This!

Whew, that was a lot of real talk!! I hope this post helps you super charge your efforts, and that you feel empowered to try new a few new things. Remember, we’re all constantly growing and learning new things – give yourself permission to stretch outside of your comfort zone.

Feel like your friends and family aren't supporting your new business? Here are some tips and scripts for you to use to ask for the support you need!

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Brianne Huntsman fashion blogger