There’s nothing like pissy internet trolls to help you get crystal clear about who you engage with and that you don’t owe anybody anything.
Not to mention the joy of choosing to block these people from your life.
My friend Karen Michaels (a brilliant social media strategist) repeatedly repeats that it’s vitally as important to curate your feeds as it is to post and engage.
I won’t get into a bunch of details here- because the entire exchange was, quite frankly, a little wackadoodle. I re-posted something on Facebook about the Barbie snub of Greta Gerwig and Margot Robbie not being nominated for Best Director or Best Actress.
The FB repost was a quote from Bette Midler.
To which a friend replied that it was typical of Amercians to lie and omit only to advance a narrative.
Um… excuse me?
What I should have done was delete him and block him immediately. But because this person was a “friend” (we’ve had actual conversations on Zoom, I’ve interviewed him, etc.), I was pretty respectful in my response.
Why a white male from Canada has a dog in the fight when it comes to American women feeling this was unjust (and just a little bit ironic considering the context of the movie) is beyond me.
Little fact for you: In the 100 years of the Academy Awards, only EIGHT females have been nominated for director, with only three winnings.
Either way, it was a ridiculous exchange and out of left field. After I deleted all of his comments and blocked him, all I could think was that this person must have something deeper going on and decided to pick a fight.
I’m all for differing opinions, provided you can be respectful.
The implication was also that because the movie received other awards, people (i.e., women) shouldn’t be upset.
Here’s the thing: I’m at a point in my life when I’m done trying to appease idiots. I don’t need to justify or explain myself to anyone.
That being said, I’m pretty sure social media isn’t the place where meaningful change is going to happen, especially with someone shows up just to be a dick.
It makes me think of the Maya Angelou quote:
“When someone shows you who they are the first time, believe them.”Maya Angelou
Here’s another internet troll story from last week that happened with a friend.
I’m going to be a little cryptic since it’s not my personal story, but you’ll get the gist of it.
A friend posted on Twitter that he was deleting a large quantify of cold subscribers from his email list that had come through one specific growth strategy, then asked if people could guess what it was.
Someone from a company that sells this growth strategy jumped in with what appeared to be an attempt at a diplomatic reply, only to end up basically blaming the issue on the creator/business owner not having a good onboarding sequence.
Huge opportunity missed for creating a conversation about doing better.
My friend is pretty brilliant when it comes to email marketing, growth, data, and automations.
By the way, the growth strategy that was called out was referral programs.
I’ll go on the record now and say that if these programs don’t improve, in other words, stop shoving 3-8 more opt-ins in someone’s face after they subscribe, a lot of people will stop using them.
I also think advertisers will stop paying for sponsorships in newsletters with big subscriber lists and crappy conversion rates.
WAY too many people are running their businesses with their egos driving the bus.
Internet trolls aren’t going anywhere anytime soon.
It always comes down to how we handle what shows up.
And even then, we’re all human and have bad days, engage when we probably know we shouldn’t, and get riled up by people… especially when you think the troll was a friend.
Ideally, though, we move on.
This also validated my goal of mastering paid traffic this year. 😉
A Content Strategy for 2024
There’s something about the energy in the creator/marketing space that feels a bit like there’s a renaissance happening.
AI may have sparked all of this, but this is more about the space in general.
Digital marketing is now just ‘marketing,’ and gone are the days of jumping into strategies that big names/gurus have recommended, are doing, or are selling you.
This isn’t to call out companies or people by name, but for the sake of giving you an example, I kinda have to give some names here.
Let’s look at a company example first (and this is all from my own experience and observations).
ClickFunnels, which has been the leading funnel software for years, is losing a lot of ground and, no doubt, customers as well.
The launch of 2.0 was a bit of a cluster. After being announced, it took a full year to make it public, and then it launched with only half the features.
The launch was in the fall of 2022.
Meanwhile, High Level continues to grow at an accelerated rate, and a lot of big names have left ClickFunnels to move to High Level (many of whom had spoken at Funnel Hacking Live and were part of their Inner Circle) and are white-labeling High Level and speaking at the High-Level annual event.
Another company example would be ConvertKit.
They’ve made a lot of updates in the last year, but that feels like a mad-dash attempt not to lose people to beehiiv.
My primary frustration with ConvertKit was that it was supposed to be for Creators, yet we didn’t really get a visual builder for email until the last year or so.
Along comes beehiiv, who is growing at a rapid pace and deploying features their customers wanted, and it feels like now ConvertKit is paying attention.
Competition is good, but that’s not what this is about.
This is about the fact that, as entrepreneurs and business owners, we now have more options than ever before.
Whether it’s a website/blogging platform, email service provider, social media platform, or content strategy.
You have choices.
Now, let’s look at a few examples of people in this space.
The first person that comes to mind is Alex Hormozi.
And for the record, I have both of his books and have nothing against him.
But every time I see a piece of content that references how to do something like Alex, I move on.
I was watching a Laurel Portié training, and she explained very clearly why copying what Alex does won’t work for you.
And no, it’s not because you’re not Alex, and his content works because it’s him.
His style of content won’t work for you because he’s not trying to sell you anything.
What Alex does on social is part of a bigger strategy and his business model has nothing to do with selling courses, coaching, or any other digital marketing strategy.
I don’t know about you, but I use social to support my business (and some entertainment as well… one of my latest TikTok obsessions is Scottish toddlers…way too cute).
There are a whole lot of other things I’d rather be doing than spending time on social media.
I’m there because it’s marketing.
It’s all about perspective
I launched my business 16 years ago, so my perspective is going to be WAY different than someone who is just getting started.
We also have the dichotomy of it being both easier and harder at the same time.
It’s easier today because the tools we use to build and grow a business are so much better than they were in 2008.
It’s harder today because there’s so much more competition; social platforms would rather have you pay to play (the organic reach on social used to be amazing, with far less effort than is required today).
And then add AI into the mix and it’s a whole different ball game.
The best way to succeed online with content is to put blinders on.
For example, here’s a sampling of the content I came across this morning:
- Selling over 1.5M via Instagram and chatbots (DMs)
- 4000 followers in less than 70 days on Medium
- How to start writing on Substack
- An email about a TikTok course
- An email about YouTube
- An email about email marketing and another about list building
- An article about lead magnets not working (and one about what type of lead magnet is working)
- Selling digital products
- Making millions through curated content
- How to rank on Google
- How to grow on LinkedIn
- Using a $5 a day ad strategy for FB & IG
There are SO many options when it comes to creating and publishing content.
You’ll never know what works for you if you try to pay attention to everything (I know, that’s a little dramatic, but trying to keep up is overwhelming).
I’m going to keep this super simple when it comes to creating a content strategy for 2024:
- Decide what you want to create content about
- Choose the 1-2 mediums you enjoy (writing, audio, or video)
- Choose 1 -2 platforms to focus on
This doesn’t mean you can’t test a different medium or share on more than 1-2 platforms.
It means this is your primary focus, and you can do what you want after those are done.
Put your focus into getting better at the things you enjoy, and then allow yourself some time to test/play/explore.
Provided you can do that without derailing yourself (we’ve all been there).
ALL of this stuff works.
That doesn’t mean you have to do it all, nor do you have to hire someone to do the things you don’t like doing.
I will happily hire someone to do social for me later this year once I have a strategy down that works for what I’m doing in my business.
Recently, I was listening to the Free Time podcast with Jenny Blake, where she shared that she’s shutting down her private community and stopping both her podcasts (Free Time and Pivot).
One of the things I’ve loved about Jenny Blake since I found her was that she’s so honest about what works for her. She’s not active on social media and talks very openly about needing time and space in her life outside of her business.
She worked for Google, and once she was promoted to managing a team, she was miserable.
She never wanted to manage people but felt like that was what she was “supposed” to do (Oh, corporate America… you’ve done a number on a lot of us).
I’m sure this is why she came up with the term “delightfully tiny team” – which she talks about in her book Free Time.
You do not have to want to be on every platform, creating every type of content.
And if you do?
Go for it.
You also get to change your mind.
I will change my mind and try new things as long as it takes to find what works for me.
And… if you don’t want to create content?
That’s perfectly OK, too.
As long as you can drive traffic to your products and services (paid traffic, referrals from previous customers, etc.), and you’re good with how things are running in your business, that’s all that matters.
If you do want to create content, you have to make sure enough people see it.
Whether that’s social or paid traffic, you need people to consume it.
At the end of the day, the best type of content you can create is the type you enjoy.
From there, you can work on getting better. Fine-tuning it, drilling deeper, making it more entertaining, and learning to edit your own work (that’s an art form in and of itself!).
And of course, if it’s not fun, don’t do it.