Any solopreneur will tell you it’s hard to find more hours in each day. If only we could buy time as easily as we could buy caffeine to get the things done!
When you’re running your business solo – as I currently am – the thought of keeping up with orders, clients, admin tasks, billing, and then all your personal responsibilities (laundry, family, dog/kids) on top of running your business is daunting enough. And then you’re told by all those business experts to throw marketing and content creating to this ever-growing list?!
Me too. I feel the overwhelm too. But thanks to some great tips and tricks I’ve picked up from other experts in the field, I’ve got a routine that allows me to bust out content, get it scheduled, and know what I’m doing and when – no guessing, no “oh I should probably post to Instagram today, shouldn’t I”.
Keep reading for a peek inside my content creating & planning process and to pick up a few ideas of your own!
Pick your battles.
And by battles, I mean platforms. You don’t have to do everything. Read that again: you don’t have to do everything.
Pick 1 or 2 platforms you want to create content for and focus on those. Pick platforms that would be most beneficial for your customers or clients. Where are they hanging out? Where are they likely to find you? Are they searching for content similar to what you have to offer on YouTube? Google? Instagram? Are they hanging out in Facebook groups?
Know your audience, pick the platforms that work best for your business, and keep it simple to start with.
When I renewed my marketing efforts over the summer, I decided to focus on my blog, Facebook, and Instagram. Why? Because I know a lot of potential clients may be searching for content that I have to offer on Google; my Facebook page is where most of my audience currently is; and Instagram is another huge touchpoint to find potential clients. I will likely add Pinterest down the road, but for now I’m focusing on those three platforms.
Work smarter, not harder.
I’m also a huge fan of repurposing my content across multiple channels.
I don’t want to come up with separate content for each platform week in and week out. Who has that much time on their hands?!
I know that most of my audience won’t see or notice my reusing content; and even if they do notice, they won’t care.
I start with a blog post about a topic that is relevant, helpful, informative, and valuable to my audience.
[Don’t know what to write about? Don’t know if you need a blog or not? Read this for some helpful tips!]
Once that’s written, I schedule it to post to my blog at a certain date and time (more on that later); schedule a Facebook post to link to that blog post; then repurpose the highlights of that blog post into an Instagram post.
And just like that, I have a week’s worth of content across three platforms from just one blog post.
Plan, plan plan
I have a master calendar where I’ve slotted which content is going to post where and when. To set this up, I began by pre-determining how often I want to post to each channel.
This took an honest assessment of my time and workload and being okay with not doing everything. The biggest key to content planning is to do what will work for you – especially if you are balancing everything as a solopreneur.
I decided a realistic marketing plan would be:
Blog post 1x/week
Facebook post 1-2x/week
Instagram post 2x/week
As mentioned in tip #2, I repurpose my content to carry across multiple platforms each week. But what about those additional Facebook and Instagram posts each week?
After deciding how often I would post to each platform, I then outlined categories for my “additional” content to keep my posts consistent, valuable, and intentional.
These categories could be sales, general/brand awareness, personal, promotional/seasonal, etc.
I chose 3-4 categories for my Facebook and Instagram posts that were not repurposing the blog post of the week and in my master calendar, rotate which category will be used for that week’s additional Facebook/Instagram post.
For example, Week 1 might include one repurposed-blog-content Instagram post and one “category” Instagram post, such as brand awareness where I might show off a recent client project I completed. Then, Week 2 might include that week’s repurposed-blog-content Instagram post and a second “category” Instagram post, such as personal where I might share a personal highlight that ties back to my business somehow or just lowers the veil a bit to show my true self to my audience. Week 3 might include a repurposed-blog-content Instagram post and my third “category” of promotional where I create a post highlighting a special promotion or discount on a service I offer. Week 4 would continue that pattern, with that second Instagram post either utilizing my fourth “category” or starting back at the top with the brand awareness category.
Block & Batch
I don’t have much spare time during my work week and so the time that I have is valuable. Too valuable to stop what I’m doing and bust out a blog post when I have a client deadline looming.
I’ve blocked out one day a month that’s dedicated to batch-creating my content for the month ahead.
While it’s hard to say no to meetings, work a little harder to get projects completed before that day, and recognize the importance of taking time to work on my business, I know that this is a crucial step to marketing successfully.
I know that I can create more content faster and cohesively if I complete it all in one day and then schedule it to post according to my master calendar plan.
Then, during the rest of the month, I can sit back and focus on my business and just keep in touch with my content marketing instead of actively creating on a weekly basis in between all the other things on my to-do list.
The last crucial key to my content creating & planning process is being intentional with everything I post.
My audience has enough to see in their newsfeeds and inboxes. I want to give them a reason to stop, read, and stay with me!
I always create content with what will be valuable, helpful, and informative to my audience, and I always have a next action step I want them to take with each post.
Every blog post ends in a suggestion to comment, links to other blog posts, or a link to my services. Every Facebook post redirects to the blog post it’s linked to or if it’s a sales post, to a page on my website. Every Instagram post invites engaging comments or encourages my audience to read the full post on my blog or sign up for my email list.
I hope this glance at my content creating process has been helpful and that you’ve picked up a few ideas of your own! What do you struggle with in creating marketing content? Shoot me your questions in the comments!