What is content? And how to make more

What is content? And how to make more

I often hear people say that they are “Content Strategists” or the explain how to “Create Content”.

And although I know what content is, it seems to me to be a weird and jargon-ey term that causes so much confusion.

I was thinking that we could just rename it to: “Sharing your brilliance”

Because that is all we really need to do. We all know so much and have so much brilliance to share. But to clarify: what is content? And how can you make more?

Content comes in so many different forms. 

It can be: 

Image based

Written

Video

Audio

I am sure there are more categories too that I’ve glazed over.

And then there’s the length. I’m calling them micro (or snippet), small and long.

Examples: 

A reel on Instagram = I would say that is a micro-video. 

An Instagram image post with a caption = is a written and image small piece of content. 

A Facebook text only post around 2000 words = a long, written piece of content. 

That same Facebook post on your blog with images as well = is a long, image and written piece of content. 

A podcast of the same article would be = a long, audio piece of content. 

Using Headliner to turn that podcast into a video makes a snippet of video content. 

Transcribing that podcast into a written blog with images = is a long, written and image piece of content

But more important than the classifications and definitions is the purpose.

For a long time I found it really hard to create content and I did not enjoy creating content.

I spent a long time creating content with the idea in mind that I had to do it to reach clients and that content would help me sell my services. The only content I was able to make easily were “how-to” videos. I think these felt easy because they were of service to my clients with low expectations of reward. They were more of a selfless service. 

In the yoga tradition I studied for many years, selfless service is called karma yoga. In karma yoga you work for others and try to release your expectations of reward. 

Recently, I have been loving creating content. Short videos, long videos, short written posts, longer writing. All kinds. And I think what has changed is my frame for why I create content. 

Now, I create content as a practice for myself. As more of an enquiry and creative expression. The things I think about it are more like: 

“How can I say this in 60 seconds?”

“I wonder if anyone agrees with this?”

“How clearly and simply can I explain this in writing?”

“Can I explain those instructions in writing?”

“I wonder what my peeps think about this idea?”

And now I never really think: 

“I need to create this so I can sell my offer/service”

If I want to offer my service I just do it. I create a separate post, or separate piece of writing that speaks directly to the offer. 

Sometimes, while I’m developing offers, I do some research and get excited about that topic so I’ll naturally share about it, but since I separated my selling and my content, my content feels a lot cleaner and a lot free-er. I feel that I can experiment more and genuinely share with people who I care about. 

This is my story around creating more content. 

I wonder – what do you think about when you try to create content? Could those thoughts be hindering your ability to create content like mine were? 

“I pay my respects and acknowledge the people of the Yuin Nation, traditional custodians of the land on which I live and work. I also pay respect to all Elders — past, present and future.”

Do you just want to talk to me about your business and website?

I’d love to chat. You can book a free chat and we can discuss website set up and all of the other things I mentioned here. We can even set it all up of ryou and save you the headace. 

Go ahead and book a free chat here: 

How to figure out what you should blog and write about

How to figure out what you should blog and write about

Great!

You’ve decided that it’s time. You are ready to start writing and sharing your brilliance with your audience and the world. Your next thought now might be: What you should write about?”.

In this blog I will share some ways to generate ideas for your writing so you can have a big list of inspiring topics to dip into whenever you sit down to write.

This information also applies to “what should you make videos about” if you are into making videos.

A couple of important things to consider are:

What topic/s do you want to write about?

and

What do your ideal clients seek information about?

1. Talk to your people

Current Clients

If you are doing sessions with your ideal clients, you are getting great ideas on tap. Every session can provide you with ideas for writing.
What was the client’s challenge?
What did you do to help them?

I’m sure you’ve had days like me where you seem to say the same thing to about 5 people in the one week. THIS is great information to share as a written blog or video.

Friends + Market research

Current clients are a reliable source of ideas but you may not have many or any of those yet!
Other people that are YOUR people are your trusted friends. You could also have market research conversations with people who would be perfect clients with no pressure for them to buy from you.

The sole purpose of those conversations is to find out what they type in the Google search bar when they look for solutions or what questions and challenges they have around your topic of expertise.
You can do this more informally by being a great listener at parties and gatherings.
People are a great source of ideas.

A side note about your own ideas

You may not have a problem thinking up great ideas on your own.
Yay! 

Why are you reading this article?? LOL 🙂

Your own ideas are great, however I would make one loving caution about your own ideas. 

You may find that when you write from your own well of ideas that your writing doesn’t do as well as you had thought. As in: it doesn’t seem to get a response from your audience. 

If this is happening, I would suggest that you may be writing at a level too far ahead of your current client’s level of growth or understanding. 

Sometimes I write articles that I think are gold and no-one gives any hoot about them. And other times, I create something that I think is throwaway and that everyone already knows and people go mad over it. 

So, if you are experiencing this, I encourage you to have some conversations with friends who are like your ideal clients. Have those client or market research conversations to make sure you are speaking the right language for where your people are right now. 

2. Use the Google search 

Bring to mind a topic you want to write about. I used this method for MailChimp. 

(i) Type the idea into the Google search bar and don’t click search. 

Have a look at the drop down. 

Do you see a bunch of suggested search ideas?

These are ideas for blog articles or videos. 

(ii) Further down the page it might say “People also ask” with a bunch of questions and drop downs. The headings of these drop downs are also great titles for your blog. 

These two options give you ideas that the Google robot has noticed people asking a lot. So even if you don’t have conversations with people because you are clear on your topic, this method can help tease out a lot of ideas that a lot of people have definitely searched for in Google.

Creating articles that help you be found via Google search is a method of blogging that uses Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). Google is a search engine, and you can focus on optimising your website and blogs to show up better in Google search.

If you are interested in how to grow your business with a blog, I have a course about that. I delivered it with the brilliant Melanie White. I also have an SEO course with the ONLY person I recommend for SEO, Karen Phillips. This one is called “How to get the right website visitors”. Both of those courses can help you with your SEO if this is important to you and your business. 

3. Use the YouTube search 

Similar to the Google method above, you can type your topic or vague idea into YouTube and see what other content exists on the topic. Simply type your idea into the YouTube search bar and look at the ideas that drop down. 

Once you have mined those ideas, click “Search” and have a look at the kind of content other people are creating and the other titles being used. You can write an article with the exact same title if you like!

Now listen though: DON’T GET INTIMIDATED IN THIS STEP

Even though other people may have already created content that you want to create, no-one is quite like you. You have a particular configuration and lens to see life through that is of unique value to the world.

So PLEASE still go ahead and write that blog!

4. Use Keywords Everywhere

Keywords Everywhere is a free tool you can add to your Chrome browser. It enables you to see more when  you do a Google search, when you do a YouTube search and when you view YouTube videos. It actually does way more than I use it for. I am not a major ninja at it but this method of using it simply will definitely help you find writing ideas. 

So, once you have installed Keywords Everywhere to your Chrome browser and you look at your results using the above Google and YouTube methods, you will see a bunch more info on the side:

These are just more things to, hopefully, spark inspiration for you. The beauty of these methods is, Google is such a large database. Millions (or billions) of people are using this every day. And it’s free for you to mine for ideas. Yay! 

Have these ideas been helpful for you? Let me know how you go and tag me in your social media post if you used this method 🙂

“I pay my respects and acknowledge the people of the Yuin Nation, traditional custodians of the land on which I live and work. I also pay respect to all Elders — past, present and future.”

Do you just want to talk to me about your business and website?

I’d love to chat. You can book a free chat and we can discuss website set up and all of the other things I mentioned here. We can even set it all up of ryou and save you the headace. 

Go ahead and book a free chat here: 

Why can’t I do what my mentor tells me??

Why can’t I do what my mentor tells me??

Do you find it hard to follow the instructions of your business mentor? 

Do you see the sense of what she is saying and really want to get your business up and growing, but there is some kind of block?

I would preface that question by asking you this: 

Do you have another job? 

Are you currently still employed? 

Do you acknowledge that being a mother is another job?

The thing is: 

Sometimes we choose a mentor because we love her success. She is doing so well and she tells us that she is going to help us succeed using the tools and methods that she used to grow her business. 

 

Now let me ask you another question: 

Did your mentor have another job or children in her care while she established her business?

If your mentor is not a mum, or she did not establish her business as a side hustle

AND

If you are trying to establish your business while you have a job or are parenting 

I WANT TO YOU STOP RIGHT NOW

INHALE

SEND YOURSELF SOME LOVE 

EXHALE

I think it’s great to have a mentor that inspires you and whose ideas really resonate with you. Someone who is really aligned on a values level with you – so you don’t have to compromise your integrity. 

BUT

I know from my own experience, that certain mentors advice can become either: 

Un-aligned from my personal values

Or

Unachievable for me to exactly replicate due to my responsibilities. 

For instance, my current mentor, George Kao, works 40 hours a week and has no kids. 

So, when I see his calendar, his content output and his success, I set my levels at exactly half of his at the most.

Because I have 20 hours a week while my kids are at school. 

Plus, the emotional intensity and unexpected requirements of parenting impact on my business and my ability to be available to work. 

That’s the whole reason I wanted to be in business.

For me, being a parent is more of a priority than my business.

Don’t get me wrong, I love being in business and I love what I do, but obviously, if I have to choose between my kids and my clients, that my family is going to trump the biz.

And the other beauty of being a parent is: I don’t have to worry about whether or not I am living on purpose! My purpose wakes me up every morning with a cuddle. 

So being “purpose driven” in my business has been harder for me to clarify, because my main purpose is the family, and having a business that is values aligned, that allows me flexibility to fulfill my parenting responsibilities and generates a bit of revenue is actually enough business clarity for me. 

I don’t need to go down some values investigation purpose reflection exercises. When I have in the past, I just felt weird and confused. 

This whole rant started for me because I saw a social media post where someone had suggested something along the lines of: 

If you are procrastinating, go and do something of service to others. 

I felt really defensive and ticked off when I read this. 

I personally feel that if I am procrastinating – maybe I need a break. Maybe I need some sensual self care. Maybe I need a cup of tea in the sun or a lay down. 

I’m usually serving others all night (my kids are still in my bed nearly every night). I’m serving others from the minute I wake up to the minute they go to sleep. And my business hours are my precious creative time to serve the world at large in a sustainable and self-nourishing way.

I am not into hustle. 

And I do a lot already!

So back off sister. 

And if you are a mum, or if you are growing your business on the side of a job: maybe you just need a day off. On the beach, or the forest, with your journal. Just laying in the warm rays of the sun. Daydreaming.

Just being.

It’s ok if you are “behind” but what really is “behind”?

Please don’t compare yourself to others who aren’t in the same boat as you. 

For sure, take advice and inspiration from them. Just don’t think you are going to have the same process as them. 

What has helped me the most is George Kao’s business levels (which you can learn about in this course). AND his recommendation that growing a business from nothing will take 1-5 years if you are working 40h a week. 

So by default, if you are working 5 hours a week in your business. It is just going to take a bit longer.

But you will get there. 

Your work IS important and your time is coming. 

Let’s do this – gently. 

I acknowledge the Djiringanj people of the Yuin Nation, the custodians of this beautiful land on which I live and work.

I also pays respect to all Elders past & present.

Thank you for taking such good care of the wild, beautiful places of Araganu, the coastline and forests where I get nurtured.

Case Study: Shoshana Sadia

Case Study: Shoshana Sadia

Today’s case study is focussing mostly on the work I did with Shosh, supporting her with her MailChimp, although we have done lots of other things together like course creation, Facebook ads and website development. 

Shoshi is a “Womxn’s Empowerment Mentor and Cycle Guide”. She helps women to use their cycle as a superpower which invariably creates a lot of magic in their lives, harnessing the energy that is available and nourishing themselves when that is called for. 

If you want to have a better relationship with your womb, you can grab her free Womb Meditation or if you want to go all the way to SuperHero status you can take the 5 week course, “The Cycle”. Or you can just follow her on Instagram for loads of inspiration and tips to make the most of being a woman creatrix. 

When I started helping Shosh with her MailChimp she was finding it hard to get her emails to look good.

She found that the formatting and fonts were always weird when she copied the text over from a word doc or from her socials. I also noticed lots of in-text links instead of buttons because she didn’t know how to get sexy buttons. She wanted to have reliable templates, so she could use that one good email with text, buttons, images and colours in place and then just duplicate it to create automated email nurture sequences and to send out campaigns.

Shosh has the lowest paid version you can get on MailChimp, so she gets 3 audiences, and automations but she felt like there was more she could do using tagging and segments if only she knew how. 

All of this together meant that she didn’t feel comfortable sending out emails to her gorgeous people and she wasn’t hosting free webinars, masterclasses or launching her course. Because she couldn’t use the tool. 

We did a mixture of things to get her MailChimp account ship shape and highly functioning. 

One thing Shoshi was nailing already was creating landing pages in MailChimp and using tags to deliver freebies all through her one list (before she upgraded to paid). But some of those landing pages weren’t as sexy as she hoped. Step one was a revamp of her landing page header images and text formatting. 

What I was seeing was inconsistent fonts and way too many different fonts in general.

I recommend choosing one font for headings and one font for body text. No more than that 🙂

So I edited the landing pages to have consistent font use and sizing which gave us an immediate relief. 

I also created a new header image for the landing pages that was just like the images on the website banners.

Getting Shoshi a template she could use for all emails and automations was another easy fix focussing on these 3 things: 

  1. Consistent font types
  2. Consistent font sizing
  3. Creating branded buttons

Once I set these, Shosh had a template email she could use for campaigns and automations. 

There was another trick too: the address had changed but that wasn’t showing up in the footer even though Shosh had edited it in the email. This is because the “From” address in the footer isn’t set on a per email basis. There are actually some settings in your account info you need to go and edit. You go to Account > Contact Info and edit your address there. So that is fixed too!

The final step was to set Shoshi free to create gorgeous emails for herself. I did this by making short, screen share videos of how to set the fonts, how to create the buttons and a number of other things she does on the regular like moving people from one list to another. I use a screen recorder tool and do the task with verbal instructions which I then send over to my clients so they can follow along and do it themselves. These recordings are available as long as the interwebs exist as a future resource for my clients. 

Shoshi hardly needs me for MailChimp related support at all these days and can use her email marketing smilingly and confidently.

“I pay my respects and acknowledge the people of the Yuin Nation, traditional custodians of the land on which I live and work. I also pay respect to all Elders — past, present and future.”

Do you just want to learn how to master MailChimp?

I’m currently delivering MailChimp mentoring in a group program which will probably run again later this year. I also love helping people 1-1 with MailChimp so feel free to book a free chat or check out the MailChimp mentoring info here: 

Is MailChimp any good?

Is MailChimp any good?

When I started my business I was using MailChimp. 

You could get so much for free! But is MailChimp any good?

I have really mixed emotions about this. It’s not that MailChimp is bad. I just have trouble saying it is good. 

I think that the team at MailChimp wondered the same thing as me: 

What do you get any better than this in the paid version??

And over time (5.5years I’ve been in biz) I have seen MailChimp change their appearance and functions, the names of things (lists are now audiences) and most of all they’ve changed what you get for free and what you get on paid versions. 

Let’s go a bit deeper. 

I do not adore MailChimp but it is not bad. I just have a lot of trouble saying it is good 😌 🤣

I’m going to commit right now to: not going on and on about what you used to get for free. And if you have an account from before the major changes to the free pan you will find that you still have all of your lists and automations intact – so DON’T DELETE ANYTHING!! Just rename things and make the most of it. 

Rather than rubbing it in about how much better it used to be I will contrast it with alternatives that are free services. 

MailChimp is a free or paid email marketing service. If you’re not clear on what email marketing is or whether it is relevant for your business, I have a video about that here.

On the free version of MailChimp you get one audience (list of subscribers) and if you create an automation, you get one email in the workflow.

MailChimp is the big name in email marketing and it used by some big companies – but that doesn’t make it the best value or the best free service

Good things about MailChimp

MailChimp is great for beginners to email marketing. Mostly because they have been around for aaaages and so there are a lot of YouTube videos to help you and you probably have friends in biz who use it and could help you. 

Having said that, any of the alternatives like MailerLite or SendInBlue are just as good for beginners and will actually grow with your business quite a bit before you have to pay. 

Struggling a bit here, to find good things about MailChimp. 

It is not BAD okay. It’s just not the best free version anymore. 

And even if you pay, the first upgrade gives you 3 audiences, lifts the limit on automations and gives you MailChimp support, but you don’t have unlimited audiences and the support is pretty average in my opinion. If you’re going to pay – I don’t advise you to pay for MailChimp unless it feels way too overwhelming to shift platforms. 

If you have maxed out your MailChimp, I suggest you begin a gradual transition to another platform:

leave your existing MailChimp set up alone,

maybe export your list  + send newsletters from somewhere else

and gradually move over your automations

OR just have a Frankenstein set up with some here and some there. 

What I don’t love about MailChimp

It’s just not intuitive to use!

People struggle to send a basic email that looks good!

I mean c’mon team!

MailChimp have tried to improve the user experience over the years, but it’s still just not easy to use. Most people struggle with font appearance, and formatting. Getting it looking branded and gorgeous.

It’s not that  you CAN’T get it looking good, it’s just not straightforward.

Keep an eye out for a new video coming up about “How to create a gorgeous email in MailChimp”. This week or next week. Jump on the newsletter so you definitely hear about it.

Further to that: if you want a free email service that gives you more, SendInBlue and MailerLite are definitely better contenders. And if you want to pay, I highly recommend ActiveCampaign because their system offers more actions that save you time and do more spiffy things that MailChimp does even on the paid version. Plus – their support is instant and they will stick with you till your issue is resolved. Love those guys.

Do you have more questions about email marketing? There is not one blanket solution I will offer here, because everyone’s set up is so unique. So ask me anything below or make time for a free chat.

I also have a group mentoring program in development for MailChimp where I will teach you all my time saving and beautifying tips AND support you with your unique needs. Jumping on the newsletter is the best way to stay in the loop about that which will run later in the year.

“I pay my respects and acknowledge the people of the Yuin Nation, traditional custodians of the land on which I live and work. I also pay respect to all Elders — past, present and future.”

Do you just want to talk to me about your business and email marketing?

I’d love to chat. You can book a free chat and we can discuss your business, your email marketing or anything else you like!

Go ahead and book a free chat here:

How to Create Gorgeous Presentation Slides – my ninja hack

How to Create Gorgeous Presentation Slides – my ninja hack

Do you need some gorgeous presentation slides for: 
  • a webinar
  • a workshop
  • your online course
  • some other cool thing
  • ??

I love things to be beautiful – and I want them to be functional too. 

So Canva is cool for beauty, but then you have to be online to share them and sometimes the functionality is a bit skew-if. 

And PowerPoint (or Keynote if you’re a Mac user like me) is great for functionality but a bit average on the beauty (in my opinion).

And that’s why I’m sharing my method for gorgeous slides today. I hope it helps. 

The basic steps:

  1. Create your slides in Canva using one of their gorgeous teamplates. The templates are really great for prompting you on content ideas and flow too. 
  2. Export the slides as jpegs. It may come as a compressed (zip) file. That’s ok. 
  3. Open the zip file.
  4. Create the number of blank slides you need in PowerPoint (or Keynote)
  5. Drag your Canva images over into your slides. 
  6. Voila!

I hope this helps you today.

Want more help with your online business presence?

Do you need a hand with all the different ways your business can show up online? Video, Facebook, website, Instagram, Facebook ads, email marketing. The list can be overwhelming. 

Book a complimentary chat with me and let’s see if I can help: