Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about what gets in the way for people when it comes to creating content and writing blog posts. Of course once you start thinking about something it starts showing up everywhere (at least for me… maybe I need to think about huge wads of cash? 😉 ).
Let me tell you that before I get into the meat of this post that I am writing from experience.
I did this too.
And no matter how many times I read or heard something about being yourself, writing in your own voice, I held myself back. I was creating content, but it was ‘safe’ content (hmm… I think ‘safe content’ may show up as a blog post soon). You know the type of content I’m talking about. It’s informative and helpful (maybe), but anyone could have written it or created it. You get no feeling for the person behind the post or why they’re writing the post.
BUT… “safe content” is better than no content.
Nothing bums me out like seeing people spend money on a great WordPress site only to have it sit there empty with no blog posts.
Although their site isn’t totally empty.
Their pages are there.
About, Services, Work With Me and Contact.
Which is good.
BUT…if that’s ALL you’re adding to your site you’re not helping anyone find you. Know you. Understand who you are and how you can help them.
I can tell you that if one of your goals with your online business isn’t about building a community, creating relationships and supporting other people you had better have a LOT of money to spend on buying traffic, because you’re not making it easy for anyone to find you let alone giving anyone a reason to come back to you.
Let’s not forget these pages.
(I’m literally cracking myself up that I wrote the word barf).
Is it still 1995 and I missed something?
Before anyone gets their feathers ruffled, let me explain my aversion to these things, because obviously testimonials are good. To a point. They need to be used correctly. Social proof? I get it.
“Enough about ME! What do YOU think about ME?”
That’s what I don’t get.
Here’s a perfect example of what I’m talking about (and I will get to the whole “permission” thing, promise). There are a handful of newsletters that I subscribe to from marketers who have been around for a while (although I don’t know how much longer I’m going to continue being a subscriber). And every newsletter is exactly like the one before. I’m not talking just about layout, because there’s value in consistency. But I honestly wonder if they’re paying attention to the varying elements they include in their newsletter, er, e-zine (I honestly hate that term. Don’t know why… just do) to see which aspects are actually of value to their readers?
Most nauseating to me?
“What People Are Saying About Us”
You can get the same social proof by highlighting someone else. YOU put the spotlight on them.
Instead of asking them to write a testimonial for how fabulous you are, how about you sharing the accomplishments of someone you’ve helped? Someone who spent their hard earned money investing and trusting in you? If ‘you’ (aka, old school marketer) shared and highlighted someone you’ve worked with, where they were, how far they’ve come and how highly you think of them… don’t you think more people would want to work with you?
Which brings me to the permission piece of this unintentional rant (I seem to be doing that a lot lately… hmm).
Many people I work with have a coach or someone they’ve hired to help them with their new online business.
Investing in yourself and your business is smart, it shows you’re committed (and if that’s not in your budget right now by no means am I saying you’re not committed, I get that too). The one piece that seems to be missing from some coaching programs or coaching methodologies is the “trusting your gut” piece. Do you have a marketer or someone you admire in your space?
Do they preach to you exactly how you should do things or do they provide you with the tools to build a business that is uniquely yours?
You’re not going to get Permission.
From your coach.
From your community.
From your friends and family (well, you might get permission from them, but if they’re anything like my friends and family who are wonderfully loving and supportive, they don’t totally get what you do anyways 😉 ).
[icon name=icon-signin]Permission to ‘be a little different’.
[icon name=icon-signin]Use your voice.
[icon name=icon-signin]Challenge the norm or go in a direction that in your gut feels right to you (ie, not what they’re telling you to do).
Talk about a brick upside the head!
This was my lesson the first half of this year (I can’t believe we’re halfway through July already).
I made a conscious choice to trust myself and gave myself permission to do what I wanted to do. Whether it was writing, creating a course or who I wanted to work with. I knew that the ‘old school’ marketing ways didn’t work anymore and that wasn’t how I wanted to grow my business anyways. I wanted to be relatable.
The past six months my business has grown exponentially.
I’m connecting with new people (awesome people if I do say so myself), increasing my profitability and having a freakin BALL!
Next time you find yourself waffling about hitting publish or writing something that goes against what the masses are saying and doing, give it a go. When your intention is coming from a place of integrity even if what you say is unpopular my guess is it will pay off.
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Want to create your own permission slip? Download the image below and have at it!