How do I get people to ignore my age online?
In person, most people ignore my age because I can speak in a professional manner and I know what I am talking about. But, when I conduct business online people look at my age and how "young" I am and avoid me. I have had many individuals bring it up and automatically consider me less experienced even though I have several years experience, continuously learn, have a marketing job, and stay ahead in my field. Much more than other people my age. I work for a marketing company and I feel it effects my lead generation among other things.
So, how do I get people to ignore my age and seriously consider me and my services? How do I get people to stop asking for free services because it would be "great experience at my age"?
Generally people do not care about age in the Virtual World.. they look for the content..
It is possible that you are not able to present properly you knowledge and/or expertise, the way you are able to do in real world.
The people you are contacting are non-serious and not a potential clients, since in virtual world you are not sure who is real customer
Good companies and individual who need quality work never check the age they need work should be done in excellent manner but on site like Badoo.Tagged.Friend Finder people concern about age
Why not market yourself as someone on the leading edge of development in your field? If your lead generation is being affected, it could well be the subconscious signals you are sending regarding your own insecurity about your age.
Instead, focus on helping potential clients understand what you are offering that no one else can. What is uniquely your perspective and skill set?
The world responds to the signals we put out there. Develop confidence in your offerings, and you will see this mirrored in the response from potential clients.
Respect comes with results and success. If someone reads your resume...that you work in a costume shop and an online internet marketing group...and just graduated from school a year ago....they will know that you are young and still wet behind the ears. I went to the presto website and first thing i did was click on about us and it went to the owner and there was only her name typed....nothing more.
And in my opinion, that is very mediocre, especially for an online marketing group.
Things that you do today impact your success tomorrow.
But, yes, you look under 18 on your pictures and video. So, when people see you they know you are young. I would suggest an image consultant, or some type of person to tell you how to dress and how to style your hair so that you do not look like you are about to graduate from high school. I am not at all dogging you. I am just being real.
Looking youthful is both a blessing and a curse. But, if you want to get in front of a bunch of high level decision makers, you either have to have the success/history/resume to get you in front of them, and working at the costume shop and an internet marketing group with a poor web presence will not help...or you have to be able to show them the successes that you have had, and in measurable content. right now, your resume tells us that your first job is a student and you are working some part time gigs to pay for school.
Sorry i sound rough...but you are young, you look young...and you have no experience. You may have great skills...and you may go out and change the world...
Next time someone asks you about age, be able to tell them, yes...I am young and I had the same thing happen to me when I spoke to XYz Company, but we got over it and I was able to grow his market share by xyz%, of I was able to grow his sales by double digits for the last three years running.
Look in the mirror, acknowledge that you look like you are in high school, and get over it and get some results. nothing wrong with a young prodigy.
Hi Joseph - I have empowered many of my younger VIP clients to overcome the 'age' factor with this one, easy-for-you-to-do-right-now strategy:
As you do have several years experience, how soon will you approach your previous clients (even those volunteer or freebie ones) for a reference note (to clip or post online and in your porfolio) that looks something like:
"Joseph did X, Y and Z to create results A, B, C for us. The one thing that impressed us most about him is how his world-class expertise, wisdom and relevant, innovative strategies far exceed others."
The focus is on the impressive results you bring. Period.
And if you truly are ready to release the negative energy you hold (regarding the limiting self-belief) about age, give a shout now or apply the resources in my book, Ready Aim Soar!
To your improved, health, wealth and happiness, Joseph.
Hi Mr. Gedgaud,
"Age" as many other factors seems to sneak its way through to humans and increases the bias. This bias sometimes works in our favor (silver hair in places like Japan is an asset) while at others might affect negatively (not being taken serious when one claims experience with a young age).
My question is it depends on what you are telling and/or writing on your profile.
We also provide….Before we take on a new client, we start with a ‘Business and Marketing X-Ray.’ We look at what you are currently doing to attract more customers; what’s working for you, what isn’t and what you would like to acc
In order to get the customer who is evaluating your capabilities, you may want to take their attention from the "we...." you use in your profile content to customer testimonials hyperlinked into it. When the customer speaks highly of you, then the potential evaluator is addressing 3rd party thus reducing and/or eliminating the bias that could sneak into the human minds and generate unnecessary rejections to your disfavor.
Instead of stating "we.." have a team mentioned there with names and titles, and it adds to the credibility of your claims.
Integrate enough of those 3rd party testimonials that they would form the signal to the beacon of your profile so that the age factors in a noise hardly even visible in the radar of those potential evaluators looking to possibly do business with you.
Good luck and please let me know if you wish to speak offline on this matter and get some assistance.
Great question Joseph!!!
My answer: Add value and show up as the person who can do the work...then do it!!
Let your reputation speak for itself.
If you are "new" to your industry, you may need to gather some testimonials at a "TRY ME" fee. That totally depends the services you provide and who you serve.
Some people just want something for nothing. In that case, you just have to say "next" and keep moving.
I was sitting on a roundtable panel a few hours ago for the City of Columbus on unemployment and we were discussing the other end of the age spectrum. It is true there is an age bias by people but it does not become real until you make it real.
I actually am going to say that the reason people ask you for free services is because you are talking to the wrong people. (so stop taking the easy answer that it is your age) You are talking to people with invisible websites who spent the minimum investment to bring them online. You need to market to better prospects who can afford or are willing to invest in their online marketing.
There was a day when you needed to be in the phone book and on radio. If you could not afford to do that, then you were going to fail. Next time someone suggests you do it for free, ask them if that is the value they put on their website.
Don't tell them, only meet them in person, and when they want you to work for free, ask them if they work for free and say nothing.
I have never had an issue with my age and ALL of my clients are any thing from 10-20 years older than me. To be honest, some of the BIGGEST names in my industry look younger than they probably should, but RESULTS speak louder than anything else...
I guarantee you, if the copy on your websites, the marketing you use and the testimonials you have are solid, the way you look will mean nothing, the ONLY thing that matters is whether you can deliver, thats it!
I understand your frustration. Although its not relevant now for me.
I started my first company when I was 17. It was so hard. The age barrier will be there until (obviously) it won't be an issue anymore in years to come.
A few things. You actually are less experienced. Don't take it the wrong way, but you are. You may have done amazing things, but you haven't done them for as long as someone who is older than you. Don't think of that as the problem. If you focus on your age as an issue, turn it to your advantage.
If you have achieved great things in a short time show the world what you have done. Let your work, and not your age dictate what people think of you.
And as for the "free experience at your age"... that never goes away. I'm almost 40, I own 3 companies and live between 4 countries. Only now it's not an "age" thing, it's a "favor" thing. People will always try to get a lower price, or simply not pay.
That's actually just good business on their part. If I could get my marketing and design team to constantly work for "experience" and not for a salary... my profits would be so much better.
Just let your work do the talking. If you are looking for working on your own then if you are as good as you say you are, the age becomes irrelevant.
If you are looking to land a better job, then the HR guy is probably thinking that if you have done so much so fast, then that's a great asset to get, and cheap, before you achieve even more and your market value increases.
Age isn't such a problem, believe me... I've been there.
Yes, that's a frustration for sure. A couple of thoughts:
1) Take a breath, know that an age prejudice is common, at both ends of the spectrum. Young people can be treated like this by those with a couple of decades on them. And older 'experts' often have to prove that they are up-to-date with the latest ways of thinking and implementation of marketing.
2) So treat that common reaction as you would any objection. Just because you have heard it before doesn't mean you need to give it credence. You just have to make the prospect feel better. And get to the real point: results.
"You know, I've had other clients who originally thought similarly, but once I was brought in to solve their problems, we achieved x results." Have a few examples ready to articulate. And be ready to talk about their real marketing needs and frustrations, and how your expertise will resolve their problem.
Nothing confers expert status so much as having your own books, and with Kindle and Createspace, it's easy to get published. Build a site where you are an educator, if you can build it up then it will establish your bona fides as a go to person. Make sure that people know what you've achieved, what you do, and what you're capable of doing. As far as those freebie hunting chancers go, turn them down, if you give freebies then you will develop a reputation for being a soft touch and clients like that will not do wonders for your future.
Those having the intellect will recognize who you are. You give away too much value on the opinion of others. If others choose to ignore logic and reason because the source hasn't orbited the sun enough times, why is it important to you what they think? They have revealed their ignorance, you should reveal your confidence and tuck this question away. Age is only an issue if you make it so. It will not stop the average person from recognizing your message. I am a free spirit so my confidence comes from inside. If you don't believe you are worthy regardless of age, you are making it the issue. So, give no more thought to fuel it and people will recognize your genius.
Think Well, Be Well
Age is a funny thing. it doesn't necessairly speak to experience. I'm currently working with a girl who is 18 on a project I have. She's my advisor because she has knowledge, experience and connections in the space that the project is in.
The thing was when I first connected with her, I didn't know her age. It came up at a meeting we all were having when she quizzed everyone on how old we thought she was.
What was intriguing about her was not her age, but the passion she brought to the projects she had. Which was why, when I was presented with a project in her space, I didn't hesitate to reach out to her to get her input.
If you are encountering people who get hooked on your age perhaps they are not the people you want to work with. You as a person, your passion and what you are able to do should be what you let do the speaking.
Like someone below said, don't make it an issue. Don't give it power. If it comes up. Answer it directly and move on. if they get hung up on it, put it back on them. They'll feel bad when they see you "older" and awesomely successful.
Ask them if they would ask the same of Mark Zuckerberg. Tell them you know your worth and will prove it to them. Period. Then let it go.
You need to be the first to ignore it, and then them.
When I started my career I had the same problem of people not taking me seriously because of my age. I now have a similar problem with people assuming I must be out of touch with the latest digital and social marketing tools - because of my age.
My approach now is the same as it was then; recognize this as a real perceptual issue I must deal with and then address it by first ignoring it myself, second proving my mettle through my words and actions, and finally being willing to walk away from opportunities where people just can't stop letting their perceptions prevent them from receiving the value I could bring.
You are in the midst of a huge, global marketplace filled with billions of prospective clients and partners. Seek out and work with only those for whom your talents and their needs are a direct match.
All the best, Frank
First of all, I believe that YOU have to ignore your age. You may be placing too much weight on it in your own mind, which could then transfer into transmitting a lack of self esteem or reduced confidence in your performance or presentation. Your words, body language and actions should all be playing up the positives which you say that you possess. If you anticipate the negative due to perception of being too young, the energy you put forth will not bring the best results. Disregard your age and emphasize your qualities, skills, talents and personality. This will certainly make a difference!
Try to be more subtle on Linkedin etc e.g. dont post a picture, list a few recent employers and say "Previous positions available on request", dont put up school years etc.