January 13, 2020
Social media is a fabulous (and mostly FREE) way to grow your business. It’s worth it to take content creation seriously and to approach your content marketing with a plan. I’ve had great success with my system of pre-planning my content and it’s made a big difference in my business. This process will take an hour or two, so make sure you prioritize the time to really sit down and work through it. If you have little ones at home consider having someone watch your kids or waiting until they go to bed so you have a chunk of uninterrupted time to concentrate.
Set a timer for 30 minutes and do a complete brain dump of all of your business ideas, strategies, goals, and knowledge. Include everything, even things that feel silly or out of reach. Once you have that all written out, look over your list and see what categories emerge. How are some of the items related?
Group your ideas into categories. An easy way to sort them is to choose different colored pens or highlighters and assign a color to each category! You’ll also want to make note of any ideas that are best suited to a specific season or holiday.
Look over your ideas and determine the two (or three if you’re feeling ambitious) platforms that will work best with your content. These platforms will be the bulk of how you share your ideas and advice with your audience. Don’t overwhelm yourself! If you’re starting from scratch, choose a platform you’re already familiar with. Facebook and Instagram are my reliable go-to’s!
Your platform will be based on your business goals. If your number one goal is to drive blog traffic, Pinterest should probably be your primary platform. If you’re more focused on sharing video content, Instagram (stories and IGTV) or Facebook (Facebook Live) would be better options.
Remember that brain dump from Step 1? Now we’re going to dig into those ideas and find content that will resonate with your audience. Look at each idea and try to break it down into bite-sized pieces to share.
For example, if one of your ideas was “time management tips” you could break that out into more specific topics: using an app to track your work time, time blocking, how to prioritize tasks, how to effectively use a planner, minimizing distractions, the importance of taking breaks and so on. That one idea is now at least six different posts!
With your content, remember that done is always better than perfect. Just remember to inject your personality into what you are sharing! And always have someone else read what you write before you post, especially for longer pieces like blogs. If you have the resources to outsource some of your content, consider hiring an expert copywriter to take over some of your writing tasks. (I use Emily Writes Well to help me with my blog!)
Choose your topics and write out your content for a month at a time. Sitting down to plan in one big chunk will help you work faster and will take away the stress of trying to plan content on the fly every day. Now that I’m seasoned at this process, I actually plan out my content for three months at a time!
Consistency is super important regardless of the platform you choose to use. Determine how many times a week you are going to post to these platforms, and make it a priority to stick to your schedule. There’s no need to be on your phone 24/7, but you should try to carve out thirty minutes a day to engage with your audience and respond to messages.
Just a note: I suggest sticking to your desktop computer for answering emails. I believe it’s unprofessional to answer an email from your phone, and you always want your clients to take you seriously.
To help with your consistency, there are many ways you can recycle and reuse content over the course of a month. I blog four to eight times a month, but I then use the content from my blogs to create Instagram posts, Facebook posts and I even create graphics for my Pinterest. A great blog can easily become a killer IG TV post! You don’t have to constantly come up with new ideas if you’re strategic with your existing content. (Big shout-out to Amy Porterfield for teaching me this amazing trick!)
Don’t start and stop with different platforms! If you hop from place to place, you’ll never develop a dedicated audience. Growth and progress take time (as all good things do) and you need to commit to your platform and see it out over the long haul. If you move from Instagram to Facebook to Snapchat to YouTube, you’ll waste a lot of time figuring out each new platform and you won’t actually see any growth or leads.
Be responsible to your chosen platform(s) and nurture your audience. Respond to questions, comments, and DMs. Interact with other people’s posts. Be social!
Pre-planning your content takes some time upfront, but it is so worth it! Now that I’m a mom, I need the flexibility planning ahead offers me. If my son is sick or needs my attention, I don’t have to worry about falling behind on my social media marketing. There’s no stress and all of my content is intentional and purposeful.
My goal is to help uplift, encourage and support other fellow entrepreneurs who are either just starting out with a new business or are moms trying to juggle owning a business and raising a tiny human at the same time! I am here to serve you! Connect with me on Instagram and let me know how these tips helped you or ask any specific questions about my process!
DOLLY DELONG IS A WIFE TO A SUPER CUTE COMPUTER NERD, MAMA TO A LITTLE DROOL MACHINE, AND A FAMILY, WEDDING & BRANDING PHOTOGRAPHER BASED OUT OF NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE. DOLLY IS AN 80S BABY THROUGH AND THROUGH AND LOVES HER 80S PANDORA MUSIC STATION, WHICH SHE DANCES TO ALMOST ALL THE TIME. WHENEVER SHE HAS A SPARE MOMENT, SHE ENJOYS WATCHING TV (I.E. SURVIVOR), SHE EATS WAY TOO MANY SWEETS AND LISTENS TO PODCASTS WHILE RUNNING OR WALKING. TO WORK WITH DOLLY DELONG PHOTOGRAPHY, PLEASE EMAIL HER AT THEDOLLYDELONG@GMAIL.COM OR FILL OUT HER CONTACT FORM HERE.
IF YOU ARE A SMALL BUSINESS OWNER, PLEASE CHECK OUT HER FREE PDF RESOURCE HERE WHERE YOU WILL RECEIVE A 37 PAGE DOCUMENT ON HOW TO NAVIGATE THE WATERS OF SOCIAL MEDIA AND YOU WILL ALSO RECEIVE ONCE WEEKLY EMAIL CONTENT ON HOW TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS USING VARIOUS MARKETING TOOLS. (IT’S FREE CONTENT!)
Thanks for visiting!
-Dolly (aka Blaise’s mom)