For fifteen years I enjoyed an amazing corporate career. I worked for great companies in demanding roles that required the support of my teams, co-workers, and the agencies I used. However, as a single mother to a teenage son, that was the area of my life where the concept of SUPPORT resonated most with me…until I quit my job as a marketing specialist advisor with a guaranteed (and substantial) paycheck. Venturing out into the entrepreneur lifestyle showed me that success as an entrepreneur, like being a parent, depended on the support of others nearly as much as your own effort.
In some cases, people who you automatically assume will support you, simply won’t (I can write another post about why). Some people you think don’t care, will be your biggest cheerleaders. And strangers will be both your biggest fans and your worst critics.
But I like to assume the best and that generally, people want to support us crazy entrepreneurs but don’t always know how.
So for people who have friends or just people you know who hustle every day to make their brand, product, or service known, here are 5 simple ways that you can show them you want to see them succeed.
- Like, share, and comment. You’re probably already social so why not use it to bless your followers and help someone who needs your support to spread their messages. Like, share, and comment on their blog and social media posts. Your engagement shows them that you see what they are saying, care about what they are saying, and want your follows to see and care too. Someone you share their post with might really need to see it or might be the one to take their business to the next level. Think about how you’ve benefited from something that someone else shared or from someone sharing your posts.
- Go to their events and encourage others to as well. Depending on your schedule and your budget, showing support by showing up is a major way to let someone know that you care. Alternatively, not showing up, especially without explanation, sends the opposite message whether you are trying to or not. My heart cries happy tears when people ask how to buy tickets, say they wish they could make it, or just surprise me and show up. And my heart has cried sad tears at the notable absence of certain people. You may think it doesn’t matter, but it does. Show up whenever you can. You will bless the one you are supporting and will likely be blessed yourself either by a message delivered or by the support you’ll get in return.
- Buy their product, use their services, and encourage others to as well. If you believe in someone or what they are doing, make a purchase. Don’t ask for the hook-up, but ask how you can hook them up. Making a purchase, big or small, shows that you respect them and their business and want to see them succeed. Show up in their transaction history and encourage others to do the same. Again, the support you show will come back to you in the form of support for you personally, for your business (by them or others) or in other forms of appreciation.
- Send or say an encouraging word. The other day, I got a call from a cousin in California. I was in a meeting so missed the called, but the voicemail will be saved on my phone indefinitely. He said just the right words I need to hear to remind me that some people care. That people see me and appreciate my work and my sacrifice and that others are inspired to follow my path. If you have no money to give or to spare to purchase an entrepreneur’s products or services, a kind word of support and encouragement costs you nothing but a little bit of time. It’s worth more than you could even imagine.
- Offer to help. Usually entrepreneurs are mentally and emotionally tough. We handle a lot and don’t always ask for the help we need (for lots of reasons). Don’t get me wrong. We can delegate, rally the troops, and solicit volunteers, but it’s something really special when someone offers to help. I have literally been moved to tears when friends and just acquaintances simply ask, “What can I do to help you?”. After receiving the help, how I can help them is always on my mind because their offer to help means so much to me.
Choose one or try all five, but just know that whichever you do, you will make a difference in the life and the business of an entrepreneur (or product/service) you love or like :).