Why I’m a Shameless Self-promoter (And Why You Should be, Too)


A self-proclaimed “respectful” reader reacts to yesterday’s email about Bill Russell and dominating presence….

“This one was a bit self-serving – don’t you think?”

Here’s what I think…

Oh no! The jig is up.
I’ve been exposed.
My evil scheme is foiled. 

Oh wait…

…check that…

That’s not what MEthinks. 

That’s what HE thinks. 

Turns out he didn’t like all those testimonials I put in yesterday’s email. They “hit me the wrong way,” he said. 

So he accused me of being “self-serving.” 

Out of respect, I replied to his email gently: “‘Self-serving.’ is an interesting way to put it. Self-serving definition: ‘having concern for one’s own welfare and interests before those of others.’ Can you elaborate? Where did I cross the line?”

Respectful Reader replied over the phone. 

He agreed with my definition, asked whether I “reflected” on my email, repeated the “self-serving” accusation, and gave me the bit about the testimonials hitting him the wrong way. 

He also accused me of being a liar. I’ll get to that in a minute. But first…

Methinks this guy needs a marketing lesson. 

ALL of the people I work with struggle in some way with content marketing. (They wouldn’t need me if all was sunshine and roses.) 

Among the struggles: Their emails don’t stand out. Too few opens and clicks. They’re just another overlooked, ignored, and anonymous face in the crowd. They’re not heard above all the other marketing noise. 

And they want that to change. They want to stand out. They want people to read their emails, to love their emails, to act on their emails. 

Dare I say it!? They want to be a dominating presence in the inbox. 

I help my clients achieve that.

They hire me so they can become storytelling standouts — so they can transform their content from boring to brilliant. 

I promote my business so people are inspired to do that. I promote myself so prospects understand how I can serve them. 

Note those words: Serve THEM. 

There’s a BIG difference
between self-promotion and self-serving. 

I proudly promote myself so people understand how I can serve them — so people choose to hire me. 

I loaded yesterday’s email with testimonials from my readers who said things like…

“…My eyes light up when I see the sender ‘Tom Ruwitch’ pop up in my inbox,” or…

“…I can’t wait to get my email from you. It starts off my day just great,” or…

“…The emails that I get from Tom are one of like three that I read on a consistent basis. The content is THAT good.”


Because I’m a self-serving blowhard who puts my interests above others. 

Because, I want you to envision the journey…

…from overlooked, ignored, and anonymous…

…to standing out, indispensable, and a dominating presence.

In fact, I said this in yesterday’s email…

Ordinary marketing players dish out the same-old, boring, blah-blah-blah content. Prospects yawn, tune out, and move on.  

Storytelling standouts deliver brilliant content. They rise above others. They become the go-to players in their niches.

Their emails dominate the inbox. The emails shine brighter than the others.

Emails that stand out as the ones to open, the ones to read from bottom to top, the ones to click on. 

When you become a storytelling standout, subscribers open your emails because YOU sent them. They know they can count on you.

And then I followed with the testimonials to show what can happen when you deliver captivating content.

That’s what story-powered marketing is all about. 

  • Empathize with your prospects and meet them where they are (overlooked, ignored, and anonymous).
  • Envision where they can go (standing out, indispensable, and a dominating presence).
  • Describe how you enable the journey. 

Which leads me to the part about being called a liar. 

I closed yesterday’s email by noting that anyone can LEARN to be a storytelling standout. It’s not about “God-given” talent. It’s about learning skills and actions and practicing them consistently. 

 “I can share with you the winning skills and actions — and how to practice them consistently,” I wrote. 

And then I invited interested readers to book a call with me: “I’ve opened a limited number of slots in my calendar this month for people who want to become storytelling standouts. 30-minute Zooms to discuss what’s working, what’s not, and what skills and actions could help to transform your content from boring to brilliant.”

That was a bridge too far for Respectful Reader.

In our phone call, he said that’s “bullsh^&%t.” I don’t have a limited number of slots, he suggested. I can book as many people as I want. 



One of the smartest things I ever did for my business was to implement time-blocking. I block certain time slots for certain activities, and I don’t deviate. 

I have a lot of activities I squeeze into my calendar each month – consulting calls with clients, marketing projects, reviewing finances, writing emails, posting on social media, and…

…30-minute Zooms to discuss what’s working, what’s not, and what skills and actions could help to transform content from boring to brilliant.

I have five of those 30-minute Zooms on my calendar this month.

Let me know if you’d like one of those slots. If they’re already filled by the time you reach out, we can schedule time in September. 

Thanks for reading…

…and don’t forget…

…gather and share lots of testimonials. They’re marketing gold.

p.s. I help coaches, consultants, and business leaders discover and deliver powerful stories that captivate prospects and inspire them to act. Whenever you're ready, here are several ways I can help you become a storytelling stand-out so you'll land more clients without pitching and prodding:

1) Connect with me on LinkedIn and Facebook and (if not subscribed already) join our email list.

2) Watch the free, 7-minute Micro-Training: “The 3 Most Important Storytelling Keys to Captivate Prospects and Inspire Them to Act -- Without Pitching and Prodding.”

3) Become a Story Power VIP in the Content Transformation Academy: Master how to discover, assemble, and deliver business-building stories. Weekly masterclasses. Members-only content. One-on-one feedback and consulting sessions. And more… If you'd like to learn more about our VIP program, just reply to this email and put "Story Power VIP" in the subject line. I’ll contact you with more details.

4) Work with me one-on-one: If you’re interested in working directly with me -- to discover, assemble, and deliver powerful, business-building stories -- simply reply to this email and change the subject line to "Private Client." Tell me a little about yourself, your business, and what you'd like to accomplish, and I'll reply to discuss options.

5) Invite me to speak at an event: I can tailor a presentation that meets the specific needs of your organization. Informative. Entertaining. Virtual or live. Potential for continuing education credits when applicable for your group. If interested, reply to this email and change the subject line to “Speaking Engagement.” I’ll circle back to discuss the possibilities.

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Tom Ruwitch

Tom Ruwitch is the founder and CEO of Story Power Marketing. For more than 30 years, he has helped businesses grow by delivering powerful stories using a variety of different media.