This is the transcript of the podcast episode marketing your small business with Shona Chambers. You can find the video version with closed captions at the end of this post or over on YouTube.

Alexis is in italics and Shona is in normal text.

Hello. Hello. I am here with Shona. Introduce yourself. Tell us who you are and what you do.

Oh, thank you. So, I’m Shona Chambers. I’m a marketing consultant. I’ve been freelance since 2011. I used to specialise in customer insight when I worked for big businesses. And I used to work with media and finance companies. And now I work with lots of different small business owners really just helping them plan, strategize and get organised with their marketing to really make the most of themselves. And my pronouns are she and her.

Why small business?

Very good. So you’ve pivoted to focus on small business? Why is that? What made you make that decision?

I think I find the range of challenges that you get with small business owners to be much more interesting to be honest. I think you have a lot more control as well over you know, the difference you can make to that business.

I think when you’re working with big corporations you do get to work on lots of interesting projects but there’s so many stakeholders involved and things can often be very slow moving. And I think it’s great when you can see first-hand the effect you’re having for a client with the, you know, the solutions that you’re providing them.

Yeah. Yeah. I have to say that’s a lot of sort of why I shifted from doing like done for you content for bigger businesses towards like more of a teaching guidance coaching role because the impact is so much bigger. So yeah, I can, I can absolutely relate to that.

Social media for small business.

If you’re helping with marketing generally, then you must have people speaking to you about social media?

Oh yeah. All the time. Yes. Do I need to be on social media? Which platforms do I have to be on? How does that tie into everything else?

What are sort of the main questions I guess that you’re getting?

I think first and foremost, people often say, where do I need to be on social media? And often it’s the fact that they’re not looking at it from where’s my audience point of view. They’re looking at the tool itself. And I can understand why that is because, you know, there’s so many exciting social media tools that we can all be using. So it’s really trying to get them to take a step back and think about their audience.

And then secondly, it’s about thinking about what they actually enjoy doing as well because some people love being on camera and some people really hate it and they’d much rather write. So, you know, it’s kind of assessing all the options and then kind of trying to help them understand that they probably don’t want to be everywhere. And that they maybe wanna focus on one or two as the kind of sweet spot.

Hmm. Yeah. Again, that is definitely something that I feel like I prattle on about all the time. I’m just like, you don’t have to be everywhere. You don’t have to be everywhere. It’s okay to just be on one or two platforms. It’s fine. Obviously, that is, it’s definitely something that I see come up a lot as well. And as you say, people focus more on like “Well do I need to be on Facebook or Instagram?” Like the platform itself. And there’s less sort of consideration of, “Well, where are my people?”

How do you suggest that people find out where their people are?

I think a lot of it comes down to understanding your audience in as much detail as you can. So if you are a freelancer and your main audience is corporates then you probably want to be on LinkedIn because that is where they’re gonna be spending a lot of time.

Obviously, all these platforms have a massive range of insights that you can look at. And once you start an account, you can quickly see who is following you and what their profile is. So I think in the first place, it’s about kind of thinking about the, maybe I’ll use the word tribes. You know, I love Seth Godin. He’s big into finding your tribe. I think it’s about understanding the culture of the people that you’re trying to influence with your business. And maybe reverse engineering back from there.

Yeah. Yeah. I like that you said about culture cause that is a good way to consider it. And I know that there’s sort of a lot of pushback at the minute I’m finding around this sort of idea of an ideal client persona which is something that I work with, but I tend to do it from the sort of perspective of tuning into like what kind of culture is that person in? Where, what are they interested in? What are their problems? What are they looking for on social media? Where are they hanging out? So that is an, it’s an interesting slight sort of shift from the sort of traditional ideal client.

Writing a book.

So you’ve written a book about marketing. Tell us, like, how did that come about?

Well, I had written a blog about three years ago which was called 50 Free Marketing Tips for Small Business Owners. And every time I shared it I got a lot of good feedback from people. And I had it in my head for a while that it could be something to build on. And when the lockdown first happened in March last year I was at that point 100% public facing. So I used to do a lot of in-person workshops or be meeting up with clients, you know in cafes and work spaces. And sorry, my daughter is just appearing. And at that point I had to say, you know I can’t do that anymore. So what else can I do? And at that point I had the idea that I might try and build that blog into something bigger. And I just started from there really.

And, you know, I think one of the things I would say to anyone else who is thinking about writing a book perhaps as a consultant or specialist in something. It’s really just, you’ve got to start. You will feel like those feelings of imposter syndrome. But you know, you have to just kind of push through that and realise that you have got something good to add the people. So that’s, you know, what I would say. If anyone else was thinking about doing it.

Yeah, I think that’s the same, the starting is such an issue for a lot of people, whether it’s sort of writing a book or even just getting a social media post out there cause that’s, again, something that I the people sort of come to me and they like, they get lost in that planning stage and that like, oh, but I need to tweak it. And I need the perfect this and the, and I need or need to already know how to do this thing. I need to know everything about how it works. And it’s like, you can learn that as you go.

And a lot of it, especially with social media possibly less so with writing a book but a lot with social media, you are always shifting and changing your plans as you go because you’re being led by your audience and those stats that you you’re seeing. So yeah, just start is just sort of regularly given advice. But it really is good advice. It’s given all the time for a reason I think.

Leveraging free social media platforms.

So in your original blog post about sort of the free marketing techniques, was social media in there?

Oh, absolutely, yeah. I think at the time I wrote it I was, one of the tips I’m very keen on for people who have a low budget or they want to make the most of it is joining in with Facebook days, that you get on different Facebook groups. Like when you were allowed to promote your business. And obviously it’s important to stay within the guidelines. But even within that, you can probably post on a different Facebook group every day of the week which is a great way of getting visibility. So that was, yeah, that was one of my tips.

Pinterest is another one I’m very keen on and I think a lot of people don’t use it and they don’t understand what is. And that was another one of my tips about, you know, setting up boards that are really useful for people within your target audience. And, you know, making sure that you’re there and making the most of these great free tools.

Yeah, yeah. On the Facebook groups actually there is my episode one is all about Facebook groups. So if you want more information about Facebook groups and using those then you can hop back there.

And Pinterest is definitely like it’s been at the bottom of my list because it kind of bridges that gap between social media and search engine. And so it’s sort of this weird mishmash of the two. So it’s one of those things that I keep looking into. And then I’m like, I don’t have a time right now to invest in figuring that out and getting it all set up, organising all of that. But it is definitely a really powerful tool.

I think if you’re only on, especially if you’re a small business owner. So I think for me, I think if you’re on, if you choose to be on sort of one platform like Facebook or Instagram or LinkedIn or Twitter it is, and you’ve got a little bit of time extra Pinterest is a pretty good shout. Because there is such a broad amount of people on there and broad amount of interests and it’s that sort of permanent feed towards your blog or whatever you’re doing which you don’t get quite the same on social media. Because stuff on Pinterest lives much longer than it does on social media, which is a huge benefit. And I think it’s also a good place to repurpose your other social media posts. So if you’ve had a really good performing Facebook post it’s a great idea to then turn that into a pin and probably a blog post or something else as well if you didn’t do that. So yeah, Pinterest it’s on my list of things to actually get together. But we’ll see when that happens.

No, no it’s great. And I think Pinterest as well once you’re off and running with it. In terms of what it needs from you, it’s a lot less than a lot of the platforms and it can be so powerful. So I think, you know, they say, well, I think they’re making a lot of changes over there as well. So they used to say that you needed around 30 pins per day to really start to make an impression which I think for any of us who are kind of maybe Instagram people, that makes you think, “Oh my goodness what am I going to share with 30 pieces of content a day?” But it’s very different. So you can have one blog article and you can have up to three, four, five, you know pin covers that linked back to the same thing. And I know that now they’re making some changes. So they’re rewarding quality over quantity. Which is always good on any platform. Isn’t it?

So, but one tip I’ll give you that other people have said, Oh, that’s a good one when I’ve mentioned it. I quite like to keep a place where I’ve got all my recent PR and I’ve got a PR Pin board so that if anyone who’s interested in working with me in that way, so somebody who might say “Oh, would you like to write me a guest blog?” I can say, well, here’s the list of everything else I’ve done recently. And you just send them that one link and it goes to Pinterest. So that’s something I’ve found really handy.

That’s a really good idea. Actually, yeah. So what else are you sort of coming up against with your clients? Because there tend to be general themes and I am guessing that this sort of past year those themes may have changed slightly. So what are people struggling with at the moment?

I think, so one of the things I did last year was a bit of a series on Instagram called Your Marketing Doesn’t Work Because. And I’ve done a couple of talks for people on that too. And then the original one I think I had five or six points. And I added one recently, which was, you know if your marketing isn’t working at the moment it might not be you at all you know, especially just after Christmas because normally January is this land of, you know, half the people hate it half the people love it and they’re out there and they’re trying to change their lives. And I think this January was very different. Not only because a lot of people suddenly were dealt the blow of home-school, you know, So you’ve got people who’re feeling pretty shell-shocked anyway. They’ve just had Christmas cancelled as a lot of people felt. And now they’ve got the kids at home for weeks on end. So in that period, if you were trying to do anything and you were finding no response or little response it might not be about you at all. It might be about them. And I think we’re all so, you know self-obsessed really in the sense that we feel like everything is about us, especially on social media. If we do a post and it gets no response or it gets the less response than usual, “Oh, it must be about me.” You know, did people not like my account anymore?” But it’s about thinking that people are actually really under the cosh right now. And you know, you might need to change your approach because you might need to be more supportive right now. You might be more of a cheerleader right now rather than just sort of going out there with the same messages and wondering why they’re not connecting.

Yeah, definitely. And I think that is something that I tend to to talk about generally, but there is this balance between because something that I get a lot is that the algorithm hates me. And that’s just, that’s a whole other topic, but there is a balance between yes, there are some algorithmic issues but also what is your content? Is your content actually interesting to the people that you want it to be interesting to? And then there is sort of this push and pull between the two.

So yeah, there is, I think when you look at your content and you’re thinking like, “Well, is this like has this post not performed because it’s just a rubbish post or is it because external factors be that the algorithm or be it, you know, things going on in the world. And that has been a big issue this past year because there’s just been this consistent stuff going on in the world at different places in the world depending on where you are. And so what has done well and when things have taken off and stuff, has been massively affected by that. And I think a lot of small business owners especially have got to a point where they feel I guess exhausted by it and like they can’t keep on top of it. And I think for me, the really like the important thing is to keep up the consistency. So like keep up the consistency but also like give yourself a break on beating yourself up if stuff isn’t doing well.

And ultimately don’t be afraid to repost something but down the line, you know. If you had a post and you believe it’s a good post and you think it just wasn’t, it didn’t get the reach because other stuff was going on or something like that. You can absolutely post that again a bit later on and see like, was it actually the post maybe? Or was it other stuff going on. And there is sort of this fear of reusing content which I imagine is something you would advocate for.

Oh, absolutely. I think, you know, if you’ve done really well with something before then, you know you should definitely share it again because as we all know people are in different places at different times. So, you know, you can look at your stats and it will tell you that, you know, at 3 ’til 6 that’s like your peak times to post. But also it could be that, you know, it’s just that maybe people are, there could be something that was going on at that time and they just didn’t see you.

So yeah, definitely reusing content is a good idea and in different ways too. So, you know, one of my tips I give people is to start off with a big piece of content. It could be a podcast. It could be blog posts. It could be videos. And then work down so that you strip your content so that you kind of use every single bit of it.

And, you know, a podcast I was listening to yesterday I noticed a really clever thing that in the show notes they give you bite size snippets that were said during the podcast, and they’re all set up to Twitter so that can be straight away shared to Twitter. And I thought that’s a really good use of technology that, you know, you can make that happen.

Yeah, I like that you can also embed like click to tweets in blog posts and stuff as well. I think that is something worth trying if you’re trying to, well, even if you’re not on Twitter so much. But Twitter is a good way to sort of share content I think even if you’re not growing a presence on it. So yeah, giving that sort of option and making it really easy for people to share especially without having to type stuff out themselves does definitely make a huge difference I think.

Non-social media marketing methods.

Before we started recording you mentioned about growing, sort of taking care of the things off social media and not having everything be about social media. So tell me why you think that is a good idea.

Well, I think for one having a website that works for you when you’re not doing you know, when you’re off doing something else is a great idea. And, you know websites need a lot of work on them really to keep them actually working for you and getting your ideal customers to your inquiries. So in a sense, I’m always thinking about, you know what more I can do on that side.

Email marketing.

And I also think having an email list is another thing that I would want to consider because you know, that can really help you to convert people when they’re ready to buy from you as well. So having an email list that you nurture and send out valuable content to. And then, you know, I’m always surprised at how you can get an inquiry two years later from someone who’s been on your mailing list. So I think often it’s not about the short game it’s about the long game. And so having those other tools in your kit so to speak can be really helpful. And, you know, as you’ve already mentioned the algorithms can change. And I think having a good profile where you share valuable content that is attractive to your audience is important. And maybe it’s more about working on that than, you know algorithms working against you. But there aren’t any algorithms to your inbox. So if you’re growing your mailing, you know obviously you can end up in the promo tab or spam, but again it’s reminding people that something’s on their way to them that’s valuable.

And I think that’s the message with all of this isn’t it? That we’ve always got to be thinking of what’s valuable for our customers, and the more we do that the more we will connect.

Yeah, I have to agree. And like for me, from the sort of social media point of view is I do think it’s important to have an email list, a website, somewhere else that you own because ultimately you don’t own that social network. And if Facebook or Twitter or anybody decides that they are going to shut your account down. They can do it. They don’t need to give you a call and be like, “Hey, we’re gonna shut you down now.” You can just wake up one day and it is all gone. And if that’s the only place that you have contact with your audience that’s your entire business down the drain. And that is not a great place to be in.

So as much as I am like, “Yeah, social media is amazing, it’s great.” I do think you should be on social media but I do think you also need to have be directing people off social media to somewhere that you actually own and that you can control. And how you do that is up to you. But yeah, email lists are really nice.

Although I have to say, I have a mixed sort of mixed feelings about email lists because like I don’t know about you, but my inbox is just, ooh. So, I tend to find that actually most of the stuff that comes in is like email lists. So I go through and unsubscribe from things quite regularly. Not regularly enough. So I do think there is a line because I find that some people, quite a few businesses actually I find that like as they grow they start emailing more frequently. So if I signed up to like a once a month email list, I suddenly find that I’m getting once a week or several times a week. And at that point I’m like, this is not what I have barely have the time to read once a month. Like, I can’t do this. And I do, I personally, I don’t know if this is a personal thing but I wish there was some sort of way to be like I would only like to receive this many emails in this amount of time because I think there are absolutely people who benefit from regular emails whether that’s daily or weekly. But I think there are also a lot of people who benefit from having a bit of space between those emails. And sort of everything condensed in one email. I wish that was sort of a commonly used option on email lists for me. I don’t know what you find?

Yeah, I mean, I agree with you. I must admit, once I subscribed to somebody I tend to stick with them. I’m quite, I think because I generally subscribe to people that I really like in other places first. So I generally will subscribe to podcasts guests, news that as I quite often will take that step. And you know, if I hear them on another show, I think, “Oh, they’re interesting. How can I stay in touch?” So that drives that action. But I agree, I have unsubscribed from some people where it got ridiculous. You know, I feel personally, if you’re emailing someone every day for no reason, I understand when people are running a challenge and things you have to get more contacts. So, but I suppose it’s that I think for a lot of people it’s about pushing for the sale which is what drives that behaviour. So for me, I email once a week, I always have done since I set the list up, it’s a tips email. And generally I don’t get many unsubscribes. And I like to think it’s because I consider that the email for me is all about value. I’m probably not selling enough, you know but people often send me nice feedback. So I think, you know, But I agree, you don’t want to be pestering people. We have less time than ever.

And if you don’t want people unsubscribing then you know, you might want to consider that. Although I have seen other people say if someone unsubscribes they’re not your right customer anyway. So in a way, you know, swings and roundabouts it’s really what you want to achieve I suppose through your list. But I mean, there’s all sorts of ways of nurturing a list as well. And I think having somewhere that people can see what you’re like which is a blog, I suppose, before social media before they decide they want even more of that content is a good idea.

So in that way it’s, they’re all joined up. The email list, the social media, the blog. They all sort of if you need them, they all work together. Yeah, I think they’re a great tool.

I think that’s the whole thing about understanding marketing. You have a toolkit essentially of different things at your disposal and it’s about understanding them all and deciding which ones are right for which different contexts as well I suppose.

You know, you’re very good at your on camera things. You know, I like watching you and you’re very engaging in that way. And I think video is big now as well isn’t it? So a lady that I gave a little bit of advice to recently. She was saying she was encountering real resistance with getting her monthly newsletter done. And when I asked her why? She was just saying that for some reason for her it was the writing of it. So I suggested instead that she did a video every month and emailed it to people which she’s now done. And I think it’s, you know, really helps her. So I think marketing is always about playing to your strengths and not feeling like you’ve got to do it the way other people do.

Yeah, definitely. And that’s actually, you say about how video is so popular at the minute. And that is something that comes up a lot with sort of clients of mine. Is like, “Well, do I have to be on video? I really, I don’t. I hate video. I don’t want to be on video. Like I’m not a fan of video.”

Everybody says like you, you know you’re so engaging, you come across really well on video. And I’m just like, “Really, really?” Not my favourite thing. But you don’t need to be on video. And this is something I find myself saying like all the time. Is like, you can show up on stories and not be on video. You know, you don’t have to go live. You don’t have to be creating long form videos. You can find like what works for you.

And something that I said, actually towards the end of last year that sort of resonated with a lot of people was like, if you hate video and you start creating regular video content, you are going to bring people to you who love video content and back yourself into this corner where you then have to keep creating video. If you’re a big fan of writing and you put out great written content, you will bring people to you who want written content. So as much as I do think it’s important if you can to create similar content in different formats because there are people who respond much better to video than written content or whatever. Ultimately, I think you need to be focusing on what you actually enjoy creating and also what you’re good at creating.

Because yeah, there were a lot of people who have found sort of that they are like backing themselves into that corner of they’ve started doing this specific thing because it’s popular because that’s what you need to do. And they’re like, “I hate it.” And it taints your business I think. Because then every time you come to create that content, you’re just like, “I hate this. I don’t want to do this.”

Marketing with people not to them.

Yeah. Yeah. I completely understand that. I think a book that I’m reading at the moment which is properly very well-known, it’s Seth Godin’s The Practice. And if anyone is interested in him, he’s very much about doing things with people not to them. So he, I think coined the phrase permission marketing, which, you know, I love that idea that you know, when you’re marketing with somebody or in a relationship with them then it should feel that way. That, you know, you’re trying to understand what they’re like. And you know, they’re getting more of a feel for you.

And you know, in the book he really talks about how important it is to create a practise that works for you. So if you love to write, you need to write. You need to show up for yourself and get that writing out there because there’s no point having it somewhere secret that only you can see it. So, you know, if you’ve got that gift get it out there to the world. And I think similarly, if you absolutely love talking to people and that’s your gift, get it out there to the world. But you don’t have to do something. As you say, you don’t have to do something you don’t like. But you do need as he calls it, a practise. And I think when you and I speak about it we might call it consistency. And it’s that, you know, having something that you commit to doing on a regular basis, your podcasts, my newsletter, blogs that you know people know is coming and they can look forward to it. And you don’t just leave them high and dry for a month at a time. And that’s something that, you know I’ve spoken about to people recently about what you can do to maybe keep things ticking over when you’re not feeling at your best for whatever reason, we’re all human beings.

We’re dealing with a really hard time at the moment added to all our normal problems. And I think, you know, for me it’s about making the most of tools that show up for you. So, you know, you know way more about that than me with the scheduling tools. And, you know, having ideas to keep things going on the marketing front when you’re not feeling particularly amazing. And yeah, just keep showing up really.

Committing to consistency.

Mm yeah. Yeah, that consistency is really important for me definitely. And I think, like you say, there were a lot of things you can implement and tools that you can use which will make that easier for you.

Like I am a big fan of scheduling. Scheduling is my thing. And I know there are a lot of people out there who sort of feel like it means that you’re not able to be spontaneous. You know, it takes the authenticity even out of social media. But for me, absolutely not. I find the opposite. And like when I’m planning my content and also for clients I find if I know that there is a whole month of content done ready to go, it’s all going out, I am able to be much more responsive to what is happening so that then I can shift things that are planned. If something happens in the world or something, they decide to launch something new or whatever. Because I have the safety net basically of all this content is going out.

And I think as well if you have like a chronic illness or mental illness like I do or you’re living with, you’re locked down with kids and all of that kind of thing being able to sort of batch create content when you get some time and you’re feeling well. And then schedule it out so that you know if you do crash and burn, your business is still going to be okay. Like things are gonna keep going is such a weight of the mind I find. So yeah, I am a big fan of like batching your content creation, reusing your content and yes, scheduling it out.

Yeah. Yep, I agree. And one of the most common things that I do with clients is help them to produce a marketing plan. And it’s something that a lot of people don’t understand or they think it’s something that has to be in a certain way. It really doesn’t.

A marketing plan it could be a page in your own notebook where you say what you’re going to do for the next quarter. It doesn’t have to be anything more than that. But I think it’s about setting intentions and working out how you’re going to follow up on them. That is planning. And planning helps us all the time. Because if we, you know you’re not always gonna be on your A game every day. So when you have a plan it helps you because you follow it and it gets you over the humps when you’re not feeling at your best.

Writing your own marketing plan.

Yeah, exactly. Exactly. And then on that point, then how would you suggest someone sort of set up a really basic marketing plan for themselves?

Yeah, I think, well I would start off with a marketing audit. I would get them to look at all of their profiles wherever they’re appearing right now on the internet. I’d get them to have a look at where they appear on Google as well maybe to understand what a client would see if they were to look for that person. So that’s like stage one.

And then probably just sit down and work out what goals and objectives that they have for a certain period whether it’s 90 days, that’s always popular or a year.

And then look at which of their profiles they want to keep and which ones they might want to bench or, you know, stop doing for now. And I always think if you’re going to do that you might as well actually shut down a profile rather than leave it there gathering dust. And the worst thing you might happen The worst thing that can happen is someone can send you a message somewhere and you don’t see it for four weeks or something, and then you feel terrible. So if you’re not really somewhere then just close it down. It’s better not to be there.

So once you’ve had a look at ideal, sorry, the audit and you know, thought about what you actually want to do then it’s sort of thinking about the ideal customer like you talked about as well. Personally, I don’t tend to go down the route of getting really fixated on, you know, one person. This is the person. I know that can help some people that tend to be more a little bit broader in how they approach that.

And then once you’ve thought about who that person is and it’s going into the marketing plan then setting, you know, the objectives and then the activities you’re gonna do to try and achieve your goal and always having a way of checking if it works. Because there’s no good you know, even having a marketing plan if you don’t know how you’re going to measure the success of that activity. So that’s probably my rough guide to a marketing plan.

Now, I think that’d be really helpful for people. Yeah, I think the measuring it is what certainly from a social media perspective is what a lot of people run into problems with because I find a lot of people don’t understand what the stats mean or which stats they need to be looking at and how that translates into, “Well did this work or didn’t this work?” So yeah, it is, it can be difficult to understand the like what those stats mean. And especially because across networks they’re reported slightly differently, they’re called slightly different things in some cases.

It’s figuring out which is another reason that I think focusing on one or two platforms is helpful because then you are able to start to learn what those specific insights for that platform mean and what they mean for you rather than trying to figure out what every possible insight means on all the different platforms and pull it all together in one thing.

Because there’s a lot to learn. You know, there are a lot of different things and they play into each other as well. So if you’re focusing on the one platform or just two platforms, it makes it a lot easier for you to figure that out as well I think. Yes.

Final marketing tips for small business owners.

Well, is there anything else you would like to cover?

Oh, I mean, I think we’ve given people a lot to think about today you know, I think for me with marketing again, you know, it’s almost like I said earlier about writing. It’s just starting, you know. And also if you feel like you’ve gone through a bad patch where you’ve just stopped doing everything. You can just start again.

And I think this is the problem. Again where we feel, we all focus on ourselves, we all see our own mistakes in such a sharper focus than other people’s. So if you feel like, “Oh gosh, I’ve stopped doing that channel. Everyone must be wondering what I’m doing.” Probably they’re not, everyone’s busy. And you know, so if you just show up again and you start again people will be the supportive people they were before. I mean, if you’ve got a huge account and you stopped posting you may lose people because you’re not posting.

But I think for the average small business owner who really shouldn’t be focusing on growing an enormous audience. It should be about building relationships with people who care about you when you show up online and may eventually become customers. That’s, what’s you’re trying to do with your marketing there.

So if you’ve gone through a bad patch and you feel like you fell off the cliff and you disappeared just come back again when you feel better and maybe think about how you could stop that happening next time and perhaps do some scheduled posts. So those things keep going out there and working for you when you’re unable to do it yourself.

You know, and I know with investment people talk about passive income. And so most of the same thing with marketing as well, you want to be thinking about the active things you can be doing. So lives and anything else that is, you know, instantaneous. And then the things like a blog where you might be getting traffic three years four years down the line. I mean, I have some blogs that still get traffic that are quite old now and I think you know, once they’re out there in Google then you’ve done it. So it’s just having that mixture really.

Yeah. If you’re stuck and you don’t know sort of what to schedule or how to start scheduling, you can absolutely grab bits from your previous blog posts or podcast or clips from videos that you’ve previously done and stuff like that. You can totally reuse those. And that is a great place to start. If you are totally stuck for like, “Oh I don’t know how to sort of batch content to create.” Is go through what you’ve already got and promote that more.

Absolutely. Yeah, I agree. And you know, maybe think about that mixture of, you know, 80% value, 20% selling because we can go the wrong way as well we can end up only doing value and then forgetting that we’re actually doing all these things not to build a big audience but to make money as small business owners at the end of the day and help our businesses. So that’s all that should be part of our thinking process too, I think.

Yeah, definitely. And there is definitely that sort of that feeling of, “Have I been selling too much? Have I not been selling enough?” I think the fear is generally, have I been selling too much? Which so many people are terrified of overselling.

But I swear like on social media, people are not seeing every single thing you post. They’re just not. So if you feel like, whereas you are because you’re creating all of your content. But most people aren’t seeing everything. But you’re gonna have like a few sort of hardcore fans if you like who will see everything you post. But they probably don’t care. They’re probably just like, “Yeah, get out there.” So yeah, I would say there definitely needs to be that balance but most people who are worried about overselling are not promoting themselves enough that’s certainly something that I find with people I work with.

Yeah, I think you’re right. And you know, at the end of the day when you started your business, you did it for a reason. And it’s keeping that in your heart and thinking about what you can give people and you know, not comparing yourself to your peers. You’re there for your customers. And they don’t know about what you know so you are the expert to them. And you can make a lot of difference with posts that maybe you think, “Oh, this is a little bit basic.” But it needs to be at times to keep everyone with you because we’re not all experts.

Yeah, exactly, exactly. I think that’s a very good point to end on. You have to embrace that sort of that you are the expert. And you’re allowed to be the expert cause you know more than those people. And that’s why they’re following you.

All about Shona.

So I’m pretty much on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook most days. And I’m @ShonaChambersMarketing on all of those.

And over on my website which is I have loads and loads of helpful blogs which people might want to check out as well.

It’s 100 Marketing Tips For Small Business Owners and that is on Amazon or on my website.

Shona Chambers, a woman with light skin tone and long brown hair, stands outside on an Autumnal day, background blurred into autumn colours, wearing light brown dungarees and smiling at the camera.

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