Social media gurus and coaches are a dime a dozen these days. From top household names like Tony Robbins and Brian Tracy (yeah go ahead and sign up for their free newsletter) to lesser know people like – well – me. My name is not on the tip of everyone’s tongue when social media is mentioned, except for my tight circle of friends and clients. I am building my legacy slowly and with a well thought out business plan that has changed several times in the past nine months. The highlight was my debut as host of my own radio show, The Social Networking NewsHour in June. It is gratifying to see the hundreds of people downloading my podcasts. I guess I am getting more popular by the week.
That being said, sure, I subscribe to many of my competitors’ blogs and ezines, not to replicate what they are doing, but to keep informed of social media trends and, I admit, to compare pricing and offers. There are several people I admire and am jealous of, to an extent. They regularly brag of a seven-figure income and packed webinars and seminars with hundreds of people in attendance. Of course I wonder how they do it, but then I stop and remember, my company is only nine months young.
There is a definite keeping-up-with-the-Joneses pressure in this industry. The key is to remain true to myself. To do what feels right and comfortable. Just because one “expert” prices a product at $1,000, doesn’t mean I have to follow suit. When another coach gives away a 30-minute free consultation and I believe forty-five minutes or an hour is better suited to my style, then I do it.
Raising prices comes with building credibility and proving I’m worth every penny. Do to that, I focus on building a pipeline and a following that will willingly write or record a nice, heartfelt testimonial. Under promising and over delivering.
The concept of quantity comes into play. Would you rather have many, many clients paying a lower price or just a handful paying top dollar? That was my thought as I prepare to launch my Social Networking Made Easy Membership. Expose many people, at an affordable price to my style and content and develop more advanced and specialized programs from there. It works for me.
How about you? What is your strategy for building your empire, especially if you are a coach or mentor in your field of expertise? Please share.
Most Sunday nights I sit down at my Mac and write my weekly blog post. Sometimes the thoughts and words come out fairly easily and other times I fret all weekend about what to write in my blog. As a social media consultant and mentor, I teach others how to blog, so one would think I would be an expert. But, alas, even a teacher of blogging sometimes has writer’s block.
In the interest of helping you figure out what to blog about, here is my standard list of hints and tips:
- Write about your passions. You cannot go wrong. Even if they don’t relate directly to your business. Your target audience wants to know about you as a person. That’s what I did last week.
- Speaking of target audiences, be very clear who you are aiming to please and choose your topics accordingly. If you are a real estate agent, writing about moving and packing tips is relevant but writing about a new movie is probably not.
- Address your audience in words they will understand. Don’t get too technical and use jargon that no one gets. A good example again is the real estate agent. If you are writing about interest rates, which many people do not understand completely, keep the language simple but thorough. You don’t want someone getting more confused than they might already be about interest rates.
- Choose a topic that is broad in scope that will appeal to your audience. You can repurpose it at a later time if you see many people leaving comments and saying they would like to know more. Then you can narrow it down to more specifics.
- You are the expert in your field, so write about your expertise. For example, if you are a cosmetics rep for a large direct sales company, write about how often one should moisturize and the best practices and techniques. Show off your experience!
- Use visuals to convey your story. Infographics are also excellent in a blog. Break up your words and make your blog appealing.
- Tell a story; convey a case study about one of your clients, convey a testimonial without going for the hard sell approach.
- If all else fails, record a video and turn your blog into a vlog. Sometimes speaking the words is easier than writing them.
How do you inspire yourself to write your blog when the thoughts don’t seem to flow?
My blogs usually have to do with social media. I carefully write them, thinking about strategy and keyword placement, just like I tell my clients to do. Write first, then go back and move some words around to optimize keywords. However, in this week’s post – that is all the social media strategy advise I will dole out.
Why? Because my daughters begin school soon; about two weeks from now and I am feeling melancholy. My oldest one begins her senior year. She has already started filling out her college applications (Berkeley, USC and UCSD in that order) and working on her essay prompts. I will miss her terribly when she leaves home, knowing that once we drop her off, her life truly begins as a young adult and I am left behind as the grieving (although thrilled for her) mother. She is my first-born, my baby, my child who is tuned into my moods and thoughts, who keeps me company and gives me her unsolicited opinions on many things I do (or don’t do).
My youngest is just starting high school. An innocent freshman who is terrified to be let loose on a huge campus of over 3,000 kids. She was in Special Education until one month ago. No more accommodations for her, no special treatment; she is being thrown to the wolves and she is not ready emotionally. After nine years of IEP programs, hand-picked teachers, plenty of time to complete homework in class and more time for exams, the State of California has decided she no longer needs any services and she is free to mingle amongst the “normal” kids. She is not ready, but I can no longer fight the system. It’s time for her to go it alone. And I am dreading it.
It’s hard to be a mom to two completely different children. One who readily accepts my advice and respects me and one who is emotionally inept and functioning at a sixth grade level, if that. I worry about them. Even though they will be attending the same school this year, they are not close and my older daughter is too involved with her studies, sports, and friends to pay much attention. My younger one won’t admit to anyone that she is scared and wouldn’t lean on her sister anyway – not cool – as she would say.
So this year my ears will perk up when the phone rings during school hours, hoping it’s not a “come and get your younger daughter” call. My eyes will be glued to the mailbox, which I can see from my home office window, waiting anxiously for the college acceptance letters to remain unopened until the oldest comes home.
The end of feeling secure that my youngest is safe and the beginning of truly letting go of my oldest to find her place in world. Do you feel sad or blue when school begins and your children are reaching new milestones? Please share, misery loves company.
05 Aug 2012
I’m not a big fan of rules, but I am a big fan of manners. Especially when it comes to Facebook and online etiquette. Lately, I have seen things in my newsfeed that were just darn right inappropriate or, what I would label – TMI – too much information! So, here are some pointers for you if you suffer from this same problem.
1) Adjust your settings if someone is over-sharing. Just click on the top right-hand corner next to their name in your newsfeed and select All updates, Most updates, or Only important updates. You can also unsubscribe from the person, unsubscribe to all updates by the person or Hide story or Report as spam if it’s really abusive and offensive.
2) Sharing photos is huge on Facebook. Keep in mind that whatever you post is in a public forum. Pictures from your latest vacation is fine – if you keep them under ten or so. No one really wants to scroll through them all. You can send the entire photo album to a friend privately. Pictures of you or others in comprising positions or situations is not appropriate, especially if you have an active business page linked to your personal page.
3) Tagging people in photos is usually acceptable, but if you are tagging someone for the first time and you do not know them well – send them a private message and ask if it’s OK with them. Similarly, if you do not want to be tagged without your knowledge, set your privacy settings so you get an email first – before the tagging goes public. You can approve or disapprove at your discretion.
4) Think carefully about your content. Engaging posts are fun. Asking questions to get opinions about something seemingly meaningless is not. An intriguing, humorous picture and asking people to write a caption is creative. A gross picture or religiously slanted comment is tasteless. Make your content count – be memorable and authentic.
5) Posting innocuous statements like ” I meant to do that an hour ago” says nothing. What does that even mean? Something like “An hour ago I finally got up the nerve to apologize to Sue” is detailed enough to draw some comments and questions that you should be prepared to answer. If you post something that leaves a doubt in someone’s mind about what the heck you mean, be prepared to spill the beans, all of them!
Social media is just that – social. Think about what you are saying and how it will be interpreted on the other end. If you have to pause before you hit “post” because you are not certain you really want it to be broadcast publicly, you probably shouldn’t do it.
What kind of posts bother you the most? Have you ever posted something you later regretted?