A successful photography business is built upon planning ahead. One of the most vital things to plan ahead is your editorial calendar, which is the basis of all of your future marketing.
In this training, we reveal some editorial hacks to not only help organize your content, but build momentum in your photography business. It’s time to plan to plan!
Transcript of Video Training
Paul: Hey, everyone.
Melissa: Hey, we’re live.
Paul: We are live.
Melissa: Welcome, welcome, welcome.
Paul: Yes. I’m Paul.
Melissa: I’m Melissa.
Paul: We’re here with Photographer Entrepreneur. We’re so excited to have everybody here.
Melissa: Yes, welcome to our monthly training, so always a fun time.
Paul: Real quick we want to thank 17hats for sponsoring our training. They help us out every month so we can dedicate our time and research and everything and bring you the best of what we gather, what we put into practice, what we use in our multi six figure photography business, to be able to help everybody as well. So Melissa, how are you?
Melissa: I’m doing good.
Paul: You’re doing good?
Melissa: We have a little guest here too.
Paul: Oh, yeah.
Melissa: He may pop in or out. Oh, here he is.
Paul: Like on cue, like on cue.
Melissa: This is Bentley.
Paul: He’s our mascot.
Melissa: Yes, so he is going to pop in and out. He is learning slowly that as we do more of these that he wants a little bit of attention, so we’re trying learn along with him the best way to accommodate him and also accommodate everybody else. So he’ll be popping in and out.
Paul: Yeah, so he’s our official mascot.
Melissa: Yeah, so say hi to Bentley. Hopefully he’ll behave.
Paul: Melissa, I know this month’s topic, do you want to explain to everybody?
Melissa: Yes, yes, so today we’re talking all about editorial calendars. We’re in the fourth quarter of the year, so this is really a key important time to talk about your calendar for 2018 because again, remember we’ve been talking all along, it’s all about planning ahead for success. This is the time of year where we’re starting to kind of get in to the … Paul, I’m going to say it. We’re going to hunker down … Paul doesn’t care for that term that much … hunker down and really get ourselves and our blankets and kind of hibernate, getting ready for the holidays. We just kind of tend to stop, kind of stop business, and we’re all guilty of it. Once October hits and then it’s Thanksgiving mode and then Christmas, just forget about it. People just zone out and go into that mode. But now is the time to really start planning, and when you have a good editorial calender in place, you can really start to build momentum in your business so that when you start off the year, you really have that momentum going.
Paul: Yeah, and I tell you what, just what Melissa said, that this is a hibernation time of the year. The weather shifts, it’s getting a little colder in most areas in the world, and what happens is that a lot of us, we start internally hibernating as well. We start slowing down, start getting distracted ourselves, start focusing on other things.
There’s nothing wrong with some of that, because we definitely need to find balance in our lives, but at the same time though, is what happens though, is to be successful in business, you have to keep the momentum there, right? The challenge is that as you’re going through the year, you start to come down and what happens is it’s harder to ramp back up into the new year.
So what happens a lot of times to a lot of entrepreneurs going into the first quarter of the year, they have a really weak first quarter. They’re really, really slow and they’re struggling, and a lot of times it’s because they shut down going into this last quarter of the previous year. So what happens is a lot of people go in, and I know this is always backwards, so I got to do it the opposite of what I think. Going into the new part of the year, what happens is we slow down because we get distracted with everything that’s going on in life, but what happens is when you do that, you’re now off the radar with a lot of people.
People aren’t thinking photography, they’re not thinking of your business, whatever it is. Even themselves are distracted, right? And we might do some Black Friday specials, we might do a holiday thing, but in general, like a general thumb, we get distracted, we’re emersed into all the family things and the traveling and everything else that we’re doing, but what happens is we have New Year’s Eve and we get really excited. We’re like oh yeah! Let me tell you my New Year’s resolutions. Here’s all the things I didn’t do last year, and it’s going to be different all of a sudden this year, and you go into January first.
Now, there are industries that are set up, there are businesses like your local gym, that are set up, knowing that the majority of the money that they make all year long is based on the people that will start showing up the first two weeks of the year, and then they end up feathering off and not showing up, and they still make money on them.
But the trick is, is that that’s the same thing in your life, and if you think about it, your business, is that if you start at zero on January the first, you as well as all your competitors are going to be doing the same exact thing, and that is like going on steroids to try to get out there, get their name out there as hard as possible because they’re like oh my goodness, I have all these bills that are coming in from the holidays. I need to start making my payments, so I need to get some money in.
What happens though is you went to invisible. You took away your momentum going into the year, and now you’re trying to ramp it back up, and that’s where the peaks and valleys of our business comes from.
Melissa: And it’s so much harder to get that momentum going, so that’s why this is so important. Today we’re going to share with you a couple of hacks so that you can keep that momentum going and building it and building it so that when the first of the year comes, you’re not unprepared, you’re not stuck. So that’s really what this is all about, and giving you those hacks so that you can really, really prepare. Now Shaun’s in here. Hey, Shaun, how are you?
Paul: Hey, Shaun, how’s it going?
Melissa: Thanks for joining us today.
Melissa: Do you want to go ahead and dive in?
Paul: Yeah, let’s go ahead, yeah.
Melissa: Okay, so the first thing we want to talk about is planning your editorial calendar ahead of time. Now, when we talk about editorial calendar, we’re talking about a couple different things, and I want to make sure we clarify that, because if you’re anything like us or maybe like me, I know I’m not the only one that has this problem, where I collect notebooks. I have one here that if you were to look next to me, I have one, two, three over there. They’re kind of-
Paul: Hoarder, she’s a hoarder.
Melissa: I’m a little bit of a notebook hoarder, and that’s something I accept about myself, but at the same time too, I do make an effort to really consolidate my editorial calendar and the work that we do as far as with the business. When we look at our editorial calendar, it’s really looking at consolidating into one source, that you have this source, whatever calendar or system that you have, that you have everything from your promotions, everything from your editorial work, and what I mean by that is how you’re going to build your audience and create that rapport all year long, not just trying to get people to buy all year long, and then everything else in between, from networking events to personal time, getting everything in on on one calendar.
Paul: Right. Now think about that. You can this quarter purposely take some of that down time that you have, because … I’m telling you not to hibernate and I know you’re going to hibernate.
Melissa: Yes, and we’re all guilty of it.
Paul: But you have the ability right now to purposely by design lay out your year in advance. Of course you’re going to have some things that will pop along the year, right, but you have the ability to purposely design. We see it every year in every business. People at the 11th hour, they’re like, “Oh, my goodness, next week is Valentine’s Day. I need to come up with a quick fire sale promotion.” It’s like that’s too late, it’s too late. You should have done something a couple of months ago.
So here’s your opportunity to sit down with a system and actually put into place, like sit down and think about it and sketch it out, like what is the perfect world? Let’s take a step back though and say okay, what social … because a lot of this is social media these days, but what social media channels are you in? Are you trying to be all things to all people and you’re burning yourself out and you’re in like 25 different things? You’re on YouTube and you’re on Instagram, you’re on Snapchat, you’re on Facebook, and you’re all over the place, and all day long your head’s spinning because you can’t keep up with it all?
Isn’t it interesting though that most people, they gravitate, they’re known for a very specific channel. We have friends of ours that photographed our wedding, they are bloggers. They are known for it and people know when to show up and what to expect. They don’t get overwhelmed being in like 30,000 different places. They might update here and there, but their commitment, like their routine commitment, you’re guaranteed twice a week for them, they’re going to have an update on their blog, and all they’re doing is then feeding their blog into the other channels.
But you know people that are like YouTubers. You know people that are very specific that are Facebookers or that in the Instagram. When you try to be all of them all at the same time, then you’re spreading yourself thin to the point you get overwhelmed, and then you start shutting down and doing none of it.
So what is the channel that you’re going to be known for, and I recommend that it’s … it’s kind of two fold, but what do you like doing the most? Do you come across on Lives well? Well, there’s Instagram Live, there’s Facebook Live. This might not be your thing. You might be somebody that likes to write, and maybe doing posts on a blog and then feeding that in the social media channels is your thing. You have to understand that it’s going off of what’s the best way for you to deliver your message, whatever it is, but at the same time making sure that your audience is there as well.
If you’re going after, for instance, like in photography, like the Senior market, well, they might not be hanging out on Facebook all day long. They might be on Instagram and Snapchat. They were on Vine a lot there for a little while, and that disappeared, and they were on Periscope for a little bit, so some of these things come and go, right? But it’s like if you try to do all of it, you’re going to get overwhelmed.
Find something that’s natural to you, because otherwise you’re going to sabotage yourself. No matter what you put in your calendar, in your schedule, you’re going to sabotage yourself, so make sure you go full circle when you’re going to do this editorial calendar, when you’re going to look at all this. You can be purposeful. That’s the whole trick people don’t realize. You can set things up on purpose so you’re not so overwhelmed all year long.
Melissa: Yeah, and this also goes to not just the events and the promotions that you’re doing personally, but things that you want to attend, so as part of your continuing education, are there conferences and workshops that you know every year happen, to block those off. In your local market, Chamber events, or meetings or whatever the case might be, those meetings happen all the time. They have internal conferences and workshops, and you can mark that out as well, and it even goes into your personal time.
So for us, one of the things that Paul and I love to do is we love to go to festivals. That’s one of our things that we just love to do, and there’s certain festivals throughout the year that we always look forward to. And as part of our own personal time too, we block off that time in our calendar because again, you don’t want that moment where it just sneaks up on you, because life happens, we all get it. We’ve all been in these situations, and then you’re scrambling around last minute where you realize you can’t go because you over-committed yourself, you overbooked, you double-booked, so taking the time really now this time of season to really plan it out. If you have to schedule a meeting with yourself to sit down and do your plan, and in a couple minutes we’re going to talk to you with another hack of exactly how to start really realistically doing this planning and planning your whole calendar out for an entire year, because you can do it really easily. It doesn’t have to be overwhelming.
The other thing too that I think we were talking about is how important it is … this is all about giving. Giving, giving, giving, because again, with your editorial calendar, it’s not just those promotions where you have like a flash sale or mini-sessions or whatever the case might be. You want to put that stuff out there, but you also want to nurture your audience, so think about those ways that you can nurture your audience and build that into your calendar as well too. Give more, because when you give more, you’re going to build that rapport, you’re going to build that like, know, and trust factor, and it’s just going to start to really come back to you in the long run to really pay off.
Paul: Right, and again, that’s one of the things that we see that people fail the most at when it comes to putting their promotions out there or creating a dialogue between them and their audience, is that they’re only hitting their audience when they want to take, and this is not a take-take-take world these days. You have to give, and you see that with a lot … everything going on these days is turning the … advertising promotions is turning to content. Facebook and Instagram, all those, they reward people that will engage in content, and people, if you’re just throwing out, saying, “Hey, buy my stuff,” people aren’t going to like that, they’re not going to share that. They’re not going to tag their friends most of the time.
You have to be very creative, you have to think outside the box, so just make sure that whenever you’re putting all this together, that there’s a silent little seller, and keep that in mind, that when people do see you just being active and that you’re a giver.
What you’re doing is you’re positioning yourself in the mind of your consumer, of your audience, that you are the expert, so you don’t have to drill them all day long “Buy my stuff, buy my stuff, buy my stuff.” Just by talking about things that are relevant to them, not necessarily to you and your product and service, but talk about topics that are relevant to your audience. That will get them engaged, get them excited. It positions you as an expert, and there’s an infinite amount of content that’s out there in the world, that you don’t even have to recreate everything.
Melissa: Absolutely, absolutely. Now that we’ve talked about how important it is to plan, and we know we need to plan, let’s talk about some of the nitty-gritty stuff, because this is all top level, but let’s get into some details, because I’m all about the details. So how do we exactly do this?
So creating systems so that you can manage these large projects. This is key because a lot of times we have great ideas, especially when we’re planning our content, and when we start to plan and figure out what kind of promotions we want to do, figure out what kind of things we want to talk about throughout the year, but it can be overwhelming because you have all these great ideas, but it’s like how do you break it down?
This comes down back to a system that I learned, which is really, it’s called chunking down. That’s when you take this large project, this big looking thing that seems so overwhelming, and breaking down this project into smaller tasks. It’s so important, because when you begin to chunk down large projects, things become less overwhelming, and when you look at it from a big scale, like we’re working on a big project ourselves right now, and if you were to look at it, like just from the perspective of what we’re doing, it’s overwhelming.
But when we have smaller tasks and checkpoints and goal points that we reach, it becomes less overwhelming. We’re able to celebrate more because we hit those small checkpoints throughout the process, and we have those wins, so that’s going to motivate you to just keep going and keep going and work on this large, large project.
Paul: Right, and again, think about it. If you put everything into a system, you’re now taking the pressure off of you waking up every morning having to remember or having to know what to deal with. You wake up and the system basically dictates and tells you what to do, so now you’re taking away the overwhelm. You have more clarity and more purpose, because instead of waking up every morning and reacting and just saying I need to come up with something, you have a better clear vision with a content calendar to put things in place to have it.
Again, great time of the year to do it. If you’re a little bit slower in your market … and again, there’s our mascot, he just came in. This is Bentley. We rescued him a few months ago.
Melissa: He decided to jump in.
Paul: We’re going to get him a little T-shirt. But it’s something that … knowing the content calendar is you don’t have to leave it up here any more. You don’t have to wake up every day stressing out, thinking what do I need to talk about or what do I need to do? This is being more purposeful and actually putting the right message consistently out there that’s going to guide your audience to again, come back to like, know, and trusting you, because they need to feel comfortable.
And I know you hear it all the time: like, know and trust. You have to understand from a human being standpoint, if I don’t have those three characteristics about you, I’m not going to buy from you. So if I don’t like you, I will find somebody else that I can relate to better. If I don’t know you, if I feel like something a little, just a little mystery, I’ll know. If you give me a warranty on something or a guarantee and your tail lights disappear, your warranty disappears, that’s not somebody that I want to hire.
And trust is so, so, so important. You can like and know somebody, and you have friends. You love them, you like them. You know them, but if you don’t trust them, you don’t want to give them your money. And it’s funny … yeah, there’s the little guy. What we learned is when we do the webinars, he wants our attention even more.
Melissa: I know, all the time.
Paul: Because he likes, knows, and trusts us.
Paul: And he’s fighting for the attention. That’s exactly what we do with your clients. Don’t lick them though.
Melissa: Don’t lick your clients? Don’t lick your clients.
Paul: No, that would be horrible. But it is a system.
Melissa: Yeah, it is, and when you leave it up to yourself, we end up failing ourselves, because it’s humans. We get lost into the day to day thing, so having a system in place is important because it creates that consistency. Again, you don’t have to think about it. You have some sort of system in place, so you know what exactly you need to do to get the topics out there, the content written to get it delivered to do what you need to do.
So for us, what we use is 17hats. They have a great system within it where you can actually create projects, and within those projects you can have checklists, you can have emails. You can have reminders to yourself. Again, it’s one of those things that when you wake up, you see exactly in this big, big project what needs to be done, what’s been accomplished so far, what’s coming up, what the deadlines are. Everyone can be on the same page, so we can look at our project and basically manage our project within those little tasks.
Paul: Yeah. What I’m excited … very frankly, this morning we woke up to an email from 17hats. This is just weird timing that you just said that, that you can actually now in the system schedule an email.
Melissa: Oh, yeah, that’s awesome.
Paul: So I think talking about content [calendar 00:17:09], like specifically, I know we didn’t have that planned, but that just came out.
Melissa: No, it’s great.
Paul: I think that again, being purposeful, like this time of the year we have our thing called Santa Experience that we do, to think that there’s certain past clients that have that in the data base that we can actually schedule, so I could batch it out today and have them roll out a week or two from now, not even really thinking about it, because I had the time today, but maybe I’m not going to have the time a week from now when it needs to go out, that by doing this purposefully, that … and the thing about it, we could just schedule the emails for next year.
Melissa: Yeah, absolutely.
Paul: Like we could actually just schedule all the emails in and not think about it, and just have them hit and go out to everybody even next year, which would be really awesome.
Melissa: This actually leads to our next point here with editorial hacks, is creating a year’s worth of content or however long. In general you should always be about three months ahead, but you could create a year’s worth and in a very short amount of time. It’s a very simple system, so we wanted to share that with you, and having things like batching, which we were talking about before about batching, if you haven’t heard that term, it’s so key in order again, having these systems in place so that you can keep yourself on track.
So during this time again, we’re in the fourth quarter, you’re looking to the next year. What’s important to you is to really get an idea what exactly you want to share with your audience, and how you can do that is just by really having that time to sit down and brainstorm everything out. Every single type of topic you want to share, whether it’s business related, personal related, whatever the case might be, to write them all down.
And if you really think about it, again, once you decide what channel that you want to go onto, there’s 52 weeks in the year, so you just have to have 52 topics, and you can write out … once you do that brainstorm, just write it all down. Pick out 52 of those and there you have content once a week. Every week you have a different topic.
Paul: Right, and I’ll give you another example. Actually, I have two examples. So earlier on we were talking to a future potential client for a branding photo shoot, and what she didn’t think of, because we were guiding her also about creating a content calendar. So this is something real that we do that we consult with our clients with. She’s going to fly in from Washington state into Philadelphia to shoot with us, and it’s that we were going through, and we haven’t determined quite yet if it’s going to be a half day or a full day shoot.
She’s an internet entrepreneur and she does very well, and we told her, because she’s just so fixated on the branding shoot that we’re going to do, and what I said to her, I was like, “Well, let’s be more purposeful. Let’s think where do you want your membership to grow? What’s the things in the future? Because why don’t we, while we’re doing a photo shoot, why don’t we create photos, like collateral, that will go with your weekly calls and your follow-up and your editorial calendar?”
And I was like, “And also, instead of just thinking like the clothes that you’re going to bring in just for the branding shoot, it’s really timeless, so why don’t we think a year in advance even on the shoot?”, because we’re batching for our client as photographers, and we’re like why don’t you bring a winter and a fall and spring and summer outfits so that we can actually … because that’s the one thing that implies what time of the year it is. We’re not going to go in front of like a tree or something so you can see what time of the year it is, but the other elements, because she’s going to be, for her branding purposes, she’s going to be in like a café and a restaurant and other things, like she would meet clients.
So it’s just something that you need to think. We’re even consulting real world with real clients to think of an editorial calendar. This is part of our lives. We practice it ourselves, but thinking future, that way, that it’s something that even on your end, it’s like you have the ability right now. You could this last quarter of the year create holiday smock sessions for next year, Valentine’s Day, like somebody might do boudoir sessions or something. You could do those right now. You can get all that support, create the sessions, have all the collateral. I’m telling you, every holiday that you can think of. Go out and get some Easter stuff, whatever it is. You could purposefully pre-create-
Melissa: And that’s batching. [inaudible 00:21:10]. That’s what batching is, so those that haven’t heard that term before. Batching is really creating ahead of time a library of content ahead of time so again, it’s not the week before scrambling around trying to figure out what you’re going to write or what you’re going to post or what you’re going to say. When you batch it, you’re making a big batch of things, so it’s getting all together and then you have this library of content that’s just waiting there. The other thing, and I know we were talking about this, the concept of holding back, because again-
Paul: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. That was the second one. I’m sorry [crosstalk 00:21:40] holding back.
Melissa: As artists, as photographers, we get so excited about what we do, and we just want to put it out there and share it, but there’s something to be said about holding back some of your content, and releasing it in appropriate times.
Paul: Right, so think about … as an example, we just did a couple of engagement sessions this past week, and we already had content that we put out, and we talked about head shots and a couple of other things in our public social media space. So those clients necessarily didn’t need us to post in that moment that they were aware we were and everything. You can actually hold content back for when you have a slower time, so if you’re struggling with having like what am I going to talk about all the time, well, maybe your business is seasonal, so maybe you have a bunch of, for instance, weddings that you do in a very short period of time, but you could slowly drip out that content over the long haul, instead of like bang, hitting it really hard in a very short period of time and then having nothing else to talk about the rest of the year.
So yeah, coming back to batching, that’s something that’s very common in the social media space. Most of your bloggers that are out there that are professional bloggers, most of the professional podcasters that are out there, they don’t typically do like once a week. If they’re doing a once a week podcast, they don’t do it like once a week. They normally will take one day, do two or three weeks worth of podcasts in one day, and then have it all processed and then sitting there like a library.
It’s a system. It’s purposeful. What can you do in your own business to systematize, to purposefully think about content that makes sense, because right now you might be in that struggle state where you’re constantly in the fire sale, like you need to find a client that wants to buy your product or service right now, and really what you should be doing is dripping on them, called drip marketing.
Melissa: Nurturing the relationships.
Paul: So over a period of time you’re just owning a piece of their mind so they think about you before they need you. That’s so, so key, so important.
Melissa: Yeah, so once you get that idea of what you want to do for the entire year by listing out those 52 topics, it’s then at that point that you can schedule that meeting with yourself where you basically block off a day where you’re creating content. Again, in general, three months ahead is always good, but if you have more time to do more, that’s where you’re writing your post or putting together what images you want to share, whatever the case might be, however you’re going to deliver that content, but taking in that time to really schedule it out. So again, we’re trying to make things easy and systematized so that you’re not scrambling around, and then you can really do the stuff that you do well, which is really working with your clients and having that communication and having that client experience.
Paul: We’re having an earthquake.
Melissa: I know, he’s underneath here. He found the bone, so he’s chewing the bone underneath my feet.
Paul: What Melissa said is so key. You have to understand that a lot of what we talk about with this is understand that instead of you being in the reactive state constantly, we can put you in a proactive state, and it’s going to decrease so much stress in yourself, your business. It will impact your house, your life outside of the business as well, because you’re not going to go into every single day going, “Oh, my goodness, I have to spend half the day to come up with something to stay relevant.” You’re actually going to stay relevant well in advance. You’re going to plan it all out. The system’s going to work for you, instead of you having to reinvent things every single day. That’s when things get very, very stressful.
Melissa: Yes, absolutely. Then the last thing is how to stay inspired and motivated, because again, when we’re creating content, sometimes it can be a little redundant. Again, you might not know what to share. You might just feel uninspired, so this is all about looking at your industry with photography, but also looking at other industries and getting inspiration from there, seeing what kind of things are being shared. It’s also about maybe getting out of your comfort zone and trying something new, so if you’ve never done a Facebook Live, maybe try it out. See how your audience likes it. If you’ve never done a blog before, maybe you write an article and see how that works. It’s again, trying new things so that you can keep up that … you know, keep yourself inspired and keep yourself motivated, and always striving for the next level.
Paul: Yeah, and whatever you do the first time … It’s like David, our son, he’s actually 12 today, it’s his birthday, and the first time that he had a basket- … he saw people playing basketball and he thought he was going to be really cool, and the first time he got that ball, he couldn’t control it, right? He got frustrated, and I think a lot of us as we grow up as adults, we forget those first emergent feelings that we had as children. We weren’t born and all of a sudden we were running and jumping and leaping. We had to learn how to crawl, or first even roll over, lift a head. We forget about all these things, so when it comes to doing something new, it’s going to be uncomfortable. It’s not going to be natural. I remember the first time that we … and we’re always growing ourselves.
Paul: When we did these Facebook Live, I was getting pinched and hit and scraped, and I still get a little bit, right under the frame here. Every once in awhile you see me go, “Ow!”
Melissa: But it’s figuring out that flow for us.
Paul: Yeah, because it’s even tough when we have two people, but also on your end it’s understanding and knowing that we’re not going to be perfect initially, and don’t compare yourself to others when you’re doing content. Just be true to yourself. Put out what you believe in, what you’re about, and you will attract the people that are into you, the authentic you, and who you are. So don’t try to be somebody else, that’s one of the biggest [inaudible 00:27:09].
Melissa: And also don’t compare yourself too, because you never know, if you’re just starting and someone’s been in this for years, don’t compare your beginning to someone’s end. You don’t know exactly what that person went through as they evolved. Again, if you were to see some of our beginning videos and things that we did, I mean, we went along the way and we’re still learning, but we’ve got to the point where we feel much more comfortable talking on camera and having conversations like these, but it didn’t just start off this way.
Paul: Right, and again, some of you, you might be better with the written word. You might be better with sound. It comes back to what your delivery mechanism is. It’s almost like a buffet that you went to the first time. Give everything a little bit of a taste, but then figure out what you like and stick with it. And our dog is going nuts right underneath here.
Melissa: Yes, Bentley’s like, “What is going on? You guys aren’t paying attention to me.”
Paul: We got to control this. But seriously, in all seriousness, as you can see, even like with the little guy, we could have very easily postponed or changed things, but it was like you know what, it’s about being consistent. It’s about being real, and it’s not perfect. We are not some multi-million dollar New York production studio. We are real, coming to you guys. It’s like we can relate to where you guys are at, is where we’re at as well. We’re all independent, we’re soulpreneurs, we’re entrepreneurs. We’re struggling every day, and it’s something that you have to look at that and you have to understand, like we can relate and we know exactly [inaudible 00:28:33].
We don’t have a team of people that are doing our content calendar for us. We have to use these type of tools to keep us on track, because I tell you what, before Melissa came into the business, and some of you know this story, but before she started organizing and structuring things, the artist side of me was I was all over the place. I was attracting business, which is half the battle, but then it was falling through the cracks because I wasn’t consistent. And if anything, that’s one thing that keeps getting drilled into us no matter what, is showing up and being consistent.
We just took David this past weekend to this … he’s into Minecraft. I’m not sure if some of you parents can relate to this, but there’s this little conference convention expo thing, so one of the big YouTuber guys, he’s up on stage and he’s talking. The kids are asking him a bunch of questions, and one of the kids asked, “How do I build an audience? How do I build a following?”, and he went through a lot of [inaudible 00:29:27] and he came back around and he was like, “You know what? It’s consistency.”
It’s like you have to show up and be consistent. You don’t have to be great, you don’t have to be excellent, you don’t have to be the best. You just have to be consistent, and without a system, you’re not going to be consistent, and that’s one of the biggest challenges, one of the biggest struggles, is you need to make sure that you’re consistent. I can’t reinforce that enough, and by doing that is through the tips and hacks, some of the tools that we talked about today.
Melissa: Yeah, yeah, so just to review again with today, again, it’s all about planning ahead of time, setting aside that time to plan. It’s not going to happen just by thinking about it, you have to actually set aside that time to plan. Finding a system to put things in place to really break up … oh.
Paul: Let him go.
Melissa: To really break up larger projects into smaller projects so that again, you can create that momentum and create those little wins for yourself so that again, you’re getting more accomplished and a big project doesn’t seem so overwhelming.
Then again, batching. Batching is huge, really sitting down when you have those sessions planned and figuring out what exactly what you’re going to deliver and how you’re going to deliver it to your audience. Writing it out ahead of time, planning it out ahead of time, getting your images ahead of time. This is the time now to start batching it out, start planning it out, so again, you’re not last minute going into 2018. You already have a library of content that you’re ready to deliver to your audience, and they’re just waiting for it.
Then again, staying motivated and inspired, so again, trying new things, stepping out of your comfort zone, and also looking in other industries too where you can find inspiration. We get a lot of inspiration from all different types of industries, and that’s really what it’s all about when creating that content and something new for your audience.
And one more thing too. Just because it’s been done before, it’s been talked about before, it’s been written about before, doesn’t mean that your audience doesn’t want it, because it’s coming from you, and you’re a unique individual. You have a lot to offer, so definitely don’t forget that about yourselves. Just because someone else did it, someone else talked about it, maybe they have a bigger following than you, maybe they’re more popular than you, it doesn’t matter because it’s coming from your own voice, yourself. You have something unique to give, you have something unique to share with this world, and you can do it in your own way that your audience is going to connect with you.
Paul: Yes. I shouldn’t say anything else, because I’ll mess it. That was great, that was great.
Paul: Do we want to acknowledge, say hi, if you guys have questions.
Melissa: Yeah, Jason’s in here, say Jason, Cathy’s in here, Melanie’s in here. Hey, Melanie [inaudible 00:31:46], so thanks guys for tuning in. This has been a lot of fun.
Melissa: We want to thank 17hats again for allowing us to come on every month. We just love having these conversations, and really diving deep into business strategies, things that make sense, things for real life entrepreneurs, and talking about how you can really streamline your business so that you can have just a more enjoyable life, less stress, and more productivity.
Paul: Yes, and those of you that are coming to Photo Plus Expo in New York this upcoming week, we will be teaching our wedding photographer basecamp, so make sure you come and say hi to us. We’ll also be at the MagMod booth on Thursday doing a half hour program there, and also Matt I think, 17hats just emailed us and said they’re sending us a bunch of swag to give out, so if you find us and see us at the Photo Plus Expo, make sure you say hi. We’ll get a selfie with you and everything. It will be great to see everybody.
Paul: So until we talk again everyone.
Melissa: Stay profitable.
Paul: Talk to you soon.