Want to know the BEST advice I could give you when it comes to your next steps in business? Well, here it is. All in this convenient blog post.
There are so many reasons not to, you could probably write a book about it – but boil it down, and the reason we avoid actually starting that business, or pushing into new, unknown areas of our current business – is nearly always because we are afraid.
That’s right. We are the reason we’re not succeeding yet. We’re literally getting in our own way – because the only alternative is to put ourselves out there as someone who knows what they are doing.
It’s incredibly difficult, and takes an unbelievable amount of guts to stand in front of your friends, or a room of potential customers and say ‘I know how to do this. Here is my work. I spent a year on it. It’s good. It’s better than those other options.’
To be frank – it’s WAAAAHEEEY easier to whine, blame the client, the competitive nature of the industry, or how ‘people don’t have money for this kinda stuff these days’, or any other list of excuses.
But here’s the secret sauce…
NONE OF US KNOW WHAT WE’RE DOING – MOST OF THE TIME.
The key – is – to – start; before you know what you’re doing. Offer things you’re not sure you can do yet, make commitments you’re not sure you can keep – and run at them FULL FORCE. Deliver.
YES, starting a business will be a constant struggle with yourself, and you’re going to have to learn the art of ‘confidence’ BEFORE you feel it – but either you administer a good ‘self slap’ and make some kind of start – or fear wins. You choose.
Ain’t nobody else’s fault tho. 😉
DON’T PLAY THE NUMBERS GAME ❌
It’s no secret that social media has become one of, if not THE biggest marketing tool that’s ever existed. And while that can be GREAT news for a small business owner – it can also be incredibly demoralising when you don’t see increasing engagement and the followers don’t come rolling in. Comparison will have you flailing down a road of ‘likes’, ‘stats’, and self-doubt.
Yes, statistics and insights are oftentimes the only way to measure the effectiveness of your online marketing, but they mustn’t be taken to heart. With changing algorithms (that, BTW, no one understands), and the increasing emphasis on paid advertising on facebook and instagram – it can make you want to stop bothering altogether.
DON’T GIVE UP!
Everyone is experiencing the same unpredictability with engagement on social media – and it’s only going to increase. We’ve can’t go back to 2010, sorry.
BUT REMEMBER – those 40 ‘likes’ that you’re feeling flat about – are 40 HUMAN BEINGS who are showing up for you! 40 valued customers that are invested in, and interested in you and your business. Don’t forget the ones that DO show up – for focusing on the ones that didn’t. Your value, and your ability are not defined by followers, k babe?
(Imagine 40 people stood outside your house right now – that’s a LOT of people. I don’t have enough mugs.)
Add value to the ones that ARE watching, and WATCH it make you money. I dare you.
IT’S ALL ABOUT YOU 💁🏼♀️
Speaking of ‘engagement’, I think one big mistake we can all make in business is marketing TOO MUCH.
Now, hear me out.
We need to market our products. Absolutely.
But if we want real, engaged followers and, in turn, customers – we can’t be constantly trying to sell them something. Ultimately, people don’t want to be advertised to – and will lose interest in what you’re selling quicker than you can say ‘PLEASE buy this’.
Think back to those early days of social media – you added people as friends, and followed those whose lives you were interested in. Humans are nosey by nature, and THAT’S why social media had such an appeal in the beginning, and continues to grip all of us, even now. No longer are we ‘keeping up with the Jones’s’ next door, but we’re able to watch the life of Hilda in Australia, whom we’ve never met – but whose life we find fascinating from afar.
In short, PEOPLE BUY IN TO PEOPLE – above any fancy new product, or display of your latest work – people follow you, because they bought into you.
In response, when we come to planning our social media strategy, we should be considering why people followed us in the first place. As we pump out content that’s designed to sell, we should be producing content including, and about ourselves – in EQUAL MEASURE.
For me, I’ve found that a photo and caption about me will get 6 times more engagement! WHAAAAT.
But it’s simple really… THAT’S why people followed ME! There are literally millions of other talented photographers to follow, but there’s isn’t ONE other Jess Withey. ☺️
NO ONE CAN BE YOU, AND THAT IS YOUR SUPERPOWER.
☝🏼WHAT A BANGER.
I get it, it can be overwhelming to think about WHAT you will post, WHEN you will post it, and WHICH words will perfectly compliment your photo and inspire engagement. But here’s one simple step to get you thinking about some new content you can share :
- What makes you different or relatable? What are some things your friends would tell me about you BEYOND what you do? Do you love dogs? Are you obsessed with soy lattes? Do you live in gym gear? Write those things down about yourself. You might FEEL basic… but here’s the thing, you want your posts to create connection beyond what you do. So things that might feel silly, might actually be your biggest assets.
That’s it for your business-y goodness, for today. I hope you leave feeling inspired, encouraged – and excited to share a little more about your world on your social media.
And hey, since you now know the power of showing up and sharing – why don’t you take a screenshot of you tuning in to this article and pop it on your instagram stories so I can say ‘hey’ and ‘thanks for being a legend’.💘