Reframing Content Marketing and social media is something I have to do occasionally.
Otherwise, I’d probably lose my mind a bit.
My challenge is that I enjoy doing it, but it can also feel like a chore.
Before we get into that, let’s do a quick catch-up.
This is the first episode of September, and I can’t believe we’re down to only four months left in 2023. I’ve been back in California for eight months now, but it still feels a bit like I just got here.
This past weekend was Labor Day weekend in the States, and it actually felt like fall! Since I spent the last two fall seasons in Costa Rica, I’m going to soak up every bit of the “fall feels” that I can.
And that’s with a trip to Costa Rica for almost a month (and I’ve got another one planned for January… woohoo!).
It was a rainy, cool weekend; I enjoyed some pumpkin spice coffee and scents (candles & plugins, what can I say) and made sure to take some downtime to simply enjoy the moment.
That was a little fall teaser as the sun is back (which I also love), and it will progressively be getting warmer again, but it doesn’t look like we have any heat waves in the near future (working back up to the low 80s).
One thing I did for myself this weekend was spend a good chunk of time going through some training I’ve invested in.
It was Laurel Portié’s $7 FB Ad Strategy program (I literally cannot believe the value of this…), and then I picked up Joel Erway’s “Power Offer Workshop” (which is only $27)- which was recommended by Laurel in her program.
I probably spent five hours on Sunday going through the training and taking notes (I retain things much better when I write them down). I had a couple of major takeaways from the training I’ve gone through that inspired this episode.
First, Laurel Portié is a breath of fresh air.
The woman is incredibly smart; she’s extremely generous with her time and knowledge, and she’s made me think of advertising in a whole new light.
Not many ad people talk about driving traffic to content for validation (Amanda Bond does as well), so when she started referring to Power Content, I was super intrigued.
Let’s look at Reframing Content Marketing first
I have always been a huge fan of content marketing.
It took me a while to find my groove (the podcast really shifted everything for me), but once I did, I fell in love with the process and mastery.
It’s changed a lot over the years and will continue to with AI, but I’m here for all of it.
In a conversation with my friend, Jason Resnick, last week, I told him how frustrated I get with SEO and keyword research. I understand it, but searching for keywords to rank in Google and then creating content around those words feels ass-backward to me.
If I want to do an in-depth post specifically for search, that’s one thing, but as a general concept, it feels incredibly forced for me.
I write relevant content that I want to create, first and foremost.
I live by my “Core Content Value,” which is that “I want people to feel better for having consumed my content.”
More specifically, the three elements of my Core Content Value are:
- People will learn something
- People will feel inspired
- I’ll connect with them on a deeper level
This is always my intention when creating content.
The thing with creating content based on keywords for a personal brand is that you may solve one specific problem (how-to content) for someone who is searching for the solution you’ve provided, but that doesn’t mean they’re interested in the content you create that isn’t quite as tangible.
So when Jason shared a recent video and post by Rand Fishkin of SparkToro, which validates all of this for me, I was thrilled.
It’s a 5-minute Whiteboard video with transcripts. Watch or read “Why the Worst Search Marketers Start Content Strategy with “SEO Keywords” 5-Minute Whiteboard” here.
I won’t go into more detail with this here, but basically, he’s telling you that your content should be created based on business-centric goals.
Which was the entire purpose behind Content Creators Planner and now Create It – The Content Planner.”
Can I get an Amen?
I also follow Jessica Stansberry on YouTube and am on her list. She has two channels, and the second channel, under her name, is brand new. She’s been talking on her Hey Jessica channel for a while about not creating video content based on SEO or keywords because that doesn’t necessarily create a “sticky experience” (my words, not hers).
Her Hey Jessica channel has 200k subscribers, but she launched the new channel so she had more freedom with what she created.
My take on all of this is what I’ve always believed.
YOU are the differentiator with your content.
It’s not because you know how to follow formulas and frameworks or have great SEO. Your personality, perspective, and unique take on things are NEEDED.
For some people, that might be a little fear-inducing… do it anyway.
That’s the first piece of my Content Marketing reframe.
The second piece was completely and totally inspired by the training I watched this weekend.
Think of it this way: 👇
Your business goals ==> Your Content ==> Sales
I know that’s incredibly simplified, but that’s the point.
We over-complicate things.
In the training with Laurel, she starts with a Power Offer, which is what you’re selling. Your Power Content should support that.
I won’t go into any specifics with this because it’s paid content, and c’mon… It’s SEVEN dollars a month… sign up.
Once you have your Power Offer created, it’s much easier to create your Power Content. Which you then use to validate your offer.
Jason and I recently learned this the hard way when we offered a Black Friday Cyber Monday workshop. We didn’t validate the offer ahead of time, didn’t get enough sign-ups, and canceled the two-part live workshop.
Side note: I was kind of relieved (I think he was too). We both have enough on our plates right now. I feel like this was the Universe telling me to stay focused. 😉
However, had we followed the formula for Power Content and used our audiences to validate this ahead of time, it would have been a no-brainer (I’m floored at how many people opt out of Black Friday Cyber Monday. No judgment, but it’s a missed opportunity).
This reframe has probably been more of a reminder than anything else.
I think I bought into the hype and concern about search, AI, and SEO in general instead of trusting my gut. I’m not a newbie, and I know the value of the type of content I enjoy creating.
So that’s what I’m focusing on.
That also means I need to improve social promotion (which will tie in directly with paid traffic to content).
Reframing Social Media
I am definitely one of those people that has a love/hate relationship with social media.
I love it because I can connect with new people, share ideas, be entertained, and learn things.
I hate it because I just don’t enjoy posting – or repurposing my own content. Scheduling things is fine, but I do believe the platforms reward you more when you post natively.
Not to mention, if you schedule everything ahead of time, you need to make sure you’re also scheduling time to connect and engage.
Which feels a bit like a rabbit hole for me (I know, I need to take my own advice and do some entrepreneurial adulting here).
The roadblock for me has always been that I get way too in my head with short-form content.
I hate platitudes and absolutes.
I’ve also spent money on templates for social and then never used them.
Because they don’t sound like me.
I keep thinking these “formulas” that have worked for other people are how I “should” do things, but when I look at the formulas and templates I’ve invested in?
Men write the majority of them.
And I think I’ll die on this sword, but men & women connect differently. We’re hard-wired differently, and every single freaking time I’ve tried to force a formula onto my creativity, it flops.
Frameworks, on the other hand, allow a lot more flexibility.
I think the Formula vs. Framework will be an entirely separate episode, but think of it this way.
A framework gives you the blueprint, but you get to select the materials, the process, the timeframe… all of it.
A formula tells you exactly what to do.
“Do this,” and then.
This is where I see so many people struggle and give up.
They buy the formula, the templates, the exact process someone else used, implement it, and it falls flat.
Creating a long-term sustainable business isn’t just about copying, er, modeling what someone else has done.
You must be willing to take a risk and show up as yourself.
Remember my #JustShowUP?
That’s where you start.
You start by testing things and doing what feels right for YOU.
But you have to be willing to do it… a LOT. Just because you try something and stick with it for a month doesn’t mean it won’t work or isn’t working if you haven’t gotten the results you’re hoping for.
OK, let’s get back to reframing Social Media. I got off on a bit of a tangent there.
I’m going to do exactly what Laurel says and create Power Content.
This is 15 pieces of content that I use to validate and test an offer. I’ll start with 15, but once I have the process down, I’m going to create as much Power Content as I can.
In fact, I’d go so far as to say that will be the primary social content I’m going to create (Power Content is specific to organic social content that you use to validate your Power Offers).
I’ll continue repurposing my podcast, any videos and writing new content on my site that supports my business goals (and desire to get in front of my ideal customers) – but as far as original content for social media, this has completely changed the game for me.
All of a sudden, I see a social strategy that makes sense.
As opposed to just posting as much content, as often as possible, and in as many places as possible.
Obviously, you can do the “as much as you can everywhere” strategy if that works for you, but I want less time on social media and more time creating, selling, and engaging with my customers as possible.
I truly require a lot of white space, and this is going to support that.
In a much more profitable way, I might add.
I haven’t dug into Laurel’s $ 5-a-day strategy yet (I’m still working through the “Get Ready Protocol” part of the training), but I haven’t been this excited about content, social, and advertising in probably EVER.
The difference between where I’m at today versus, say, five years ago is not only do I have an even stronger skillset to bring to the table, but my level of focus and discipline has increased exponentially.
Not to mention the stage I’m at in my life, which is all about unapologetically being myself.
Gone are the days of worrying about how I come across, whether what I’m doing pleases everyone, and being nervous about ruffling a few feathers.
I know who I am, my intentions, and who I’m here to serve.
Playing small serves no one.
As a reminder of that, here’s “Our Deepest Fear’ by Marianne Williamson:
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our Light, not our Darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the World.
There is nothing enlightening about shrinking
so that other people won’t feel unsure around you.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.
As we let our own Light shine,
we consciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.”
It’s time to be powerful beyond measure.
Lastly, here are a few thoughts to help you think about how to end 2023 on a high note.
First and foremost, you have to get clear on what that looks like for you.
If you haven’t done the exercise of writing a letter from your future self, do it. Date the letter December 31st, 2023, and describe how you spent the last four months.
Don’t be “practical.”
Dream. Best case scenario.
Make sure to include whatever it is that matters to you:
- Time off
- Time with loved ones
Pay attention to how you feel as you write this. Really get into the feeling state of having accomplished what you write.
When it hit me the last week of August that we were almost in September, I went through my calendar and blocked off all the times I’ll be “unavailable.”
I might be working, but I won’t have any scheduled calls and may set some out-of-office autoresponders.
With a trip to Costa Rica for almost a month (I’ll be working), time off over Thanksgiving, and the plan to be off December 18th – January 5th… I realized I had less time than four months.
So, I better make it count.
I started by mapping out two pages for each month (I’ve only done September so far). I listed three priorities and what my primary focus for each priority will be each week (in addition to the weekly tasks like the podcast and newsletter).
Getting this out of my head and onto paper made it feel much more manageable, not to mention being a reminder to stay focused.
Do whatever supports you, enjoying what’s left of this year.
It’s vitally important to me that I enjoy the journey, not just the destination.