What would a teacher say about your content?
I recently asked my followers on Facebook and LinkedIn this question:
“What would your end of year school report say about the content you create for your business?
I answered the question with “Gemma has great ideas but needs to focus on her own work before helping others!” Obviously I feel that I’ve concentrated on my client work more than my own content recently (but that’s not an awful thing!)
I received some fantastic comments so I’ve picked out some of the most common observations. Can you relate to them too?
Needs to be more consistent
This is probably one of the most common critiques of content creation – being consistent. Whether it’s being consistent in showing up (e.g. posting daily for a week and then whenever you remember to) or being consistent in the content you actually create (message and design) here’s my three top tips to help you be more consistent.
1. Plan your content in advance. This doesn’t have to be months in advance – if you’re feeling overwhelmed or short on time, just think about your content for the week ahead. Using a content scheduling tool, you can create your content and set the date and time for it to be posted (one less thing to remember!) Typically I help my clients to plan content for the month ahead up to three months ahead.
2. Pick some common themes. You want your audience to build familiarity with your brand. The look can be achieved by creating some templates with your logo and brand colours – Canva is a great DIY tool for this. The content can be achieved by identifying some themes which you’d like to feature every month for example. Ideally keep it relevant to your target market’s problems or needs, or demonstrating your personality, but generic themes can include; testimonials or case studies, spotlight on a service or product, regular ‘ask me anything’ feature.
3. It’s never too late to start afresh. If you’ve been busy with your clients and your business, or life at home has gotten hectic, don’t panic! It’s OK if content hasn’t been your top priority – it happens to all of us. What’s important is that when you do feel able to focus back on content, that you draw a line in the sand and start afresh. Don’t worry about what you haven’t been doing in the past. Tomorrow is another day and a new beginning.
Is easily distracted
Yes, I understand that one too! We all suffer with many distractions in our business and at home. If you manage all the key roles in your business e.g. marketing, finance, HR, as well as delivering the service or advice you offer then this can be a common problem. As soon as you give time to one area to focus, you can easily feel guilty about neglecting the other areas and as such chop and change. My tip tips for dealing with distraction:
1. Schedule time for content creation. If you can try to build time in your diary to focus on creating content for your business. Even if it’s just an hour a week, it’s important to give yourself permission to focus on this area of your business. Just as you would allocate time for your clients, allocate time for your business.
2. Have a notepad for capturing ideas. Typically we get ideas for content at random times. Something might inspire you or give you an idea while you’re scrolling through Facebook, or when you’re reading your child a bedtime story, or when you’re just out and about. It’s a useful habit to have a notepad (or app) handy where you can jot the ideas down so they aren’t forgotten, but more importantly so that you can focus on the task you’re in the middle of.
3. Is it the right time to outsource? If you recognise that you are wearing too many hats in your business, it might be the time to pass them on to someone else to wear. If regards to content you can outsource to copywriters for blog creation, social media freelancers to manage your profiles and engagement, or utilise the skills of a virtual assistance to manage scheduling.
Too much of a chatterbox
For those who commented about being too talkative or a chatterbox, I see this as a positive trait for content creation! Engagement is all about conversation so if you feel confident to talk and to strike up conversations with your target client, that’s a wonderful start! I appreciate that ‘selling yourself’ doesn’t come naturally to some. What’s important to remember is that conversation is two way so make sure you pause long enough to listen to your audience. Top tips:
1. Put your abundance of words to good use. If you have a lot to say about a particular topic it may be a bit too much information to share in a post. Consider putting those words into a blog or (if you are confident enough) into a video. With a blog you can add it to your website which will help with SEO (search engine optimisation i.e. search engines like Google showing your content when some is searching for the services/products you offer.) and link to it in your posts on social media. You can also post your blog to your Google My Business profile which again will help in regards to SEO.
2. Answer the questions being asked. If you find that your clients regularly ask the same question then make a note of them. Use them as prompts for creating content they will be interested in. After all, if it’s a common question then many will benefit from hearing the answer. This might also help you to keep focus if you find your content can waffle a bit.
3. When clients engage, keep them talking! Whenever your target audience engages on your post, keep them talking. Firstly by responding to their comment they will feel acknowledged and seen by you, so always take the time to thank someone for their comment. Secondly – the conversation has just started! As part of your reply, see if you can ask other questions to continue the conversation, or share further insight. This may encourage others to engage as they want to be involved in the conversation. It will also increase the reach of your post because the content is receiving engagement and the algorithm rewards this by showing it to a wider audience.
Have you set a goal to improve your marks for next years school report?
I’m sure that whatever type of business you have, you find it beneficial to keep your skills and knowledge up to date. It’s the same with communication skills – it’s important to practice and to continue to hone those skills to create the most engagement.
I have JUST opened the doors to the Beautiful Content Club – a special community where you’ll be coached by me in how to plan and create engaging content for your business. A friendly community to keep you on track and, where consistency is a bit weak, we’ll keep you accountable! Want more detail? Read here.
I’m currently looking for my final two members to join my launch party. If this sounds like the right place for you then get in touch here!