Building Visibility Comes From Doing The Work
Being found by others comes from you putting in the work.
The work you do to support others, will ultimately support you too. Building visibility starts from you being prepared to put in the effort. Sporadic posts and a dormant website don’t cut it.
This article demonstrates how, for people to notice you and become accustomed to seeing you around, you have to put in the elbow grease. You have to be disciplined and dedicate time to the graft.
What Are You Doing To Be Visible This Week?
Now is the time to create, produce, and promote. It doesn’t have to be flawless. Ask yourself, what good advice can you give, what problems can you solve in between sales?
In a recent You Are The Media Lunch Club Online event, John Espirian shared with everyone that the worse thing we can do at the moment is to go silent. Being out of sight means you become out of mind.
John talks about keeping your presence ‘ticking over’ and keeping ‘top of mind’ with your network within LinkedIn on the latest You Are The Media Podcast where he also picks out what you can do to reinforce who you are, what you stand for and resist from sales by stealth.
Putting In The Work
The return you’ll get from creating the work is that people will get to know you and become familiar with your message. From this, the possibilities are huge. Putting in the work is all about creating and following through with ideas, it’s about visualising and looking ahead, rather than just responding and reacting when things feel desperate. And it’s also about keeping going (read this article on why we have to keep going).
And Being Mindful Of Potential Pitfalls
Here are some reasons why you might stall in your creative efforts and how you can overcome these very real obstacles:
The fear of being judged
when I was in the final stage of editing The Content Revolution, the manuscript sat dormant in the draft folder for five days as a written email with the text attachment, ready for the publisher. This was because pressing ‘send’ would be the moment when everything changed, when things would be beyond my control and a step nearer to being published. All that went through my head was that the work was not going to be good enough. This held me back.
It is far easier to not start something and keep ideas whirring round the safe space of your head or remain unshared and unseen by others on your screen. No one wants to deliver something only for it to be thrown back at them.
One of the reasons I started You Are The Media was because of all the events and conferences I’d wanted to speak at and all the proposals for doing this that I had to cast aside, fearful of rejection. If I created something that I could lead i.e. if I created You Are The Media or something like it, I would be creating a platform that would give me an opportunity to step forward. In the end, I couldn’t reject myself.
Too much time editing.
I set myself a ticking clock every week without fail. The deadline is publishing the weekly You Are The Media email every Thursday morning. If I miss that, a week has been lost. Making sure that the work you produce is immaculate, is an indulgence. In that time, your competition may have created, shared and moved on.
During the coronavirus, I have been working with a fantastic client where every week, the team has to step up and produce a short video. They know it doesn’t have to be high quality, it has to represent them and their voice. That voice is their brand. Time is not forgiving to those who sit on the editing process. It also gets tiring and demotivates everyone involved.
Mistakenly placing greater emphasis on acceptance, rather than frequency of voice.
Seeing a collection of likes naturally feels good as it shows you’ve gained acceptance and some form of engagement from others. However, when all you’re producing is infrequent posts without an overall, guiding narrative thread, you’ll do more than lose continuity, you’ll be losing the opportunity to build your brand.
You need a plan in place, so you don’t deviate. You also need a central theme to your narrative that can help support your voice and help people make an association with you (click here to read content themes to use your side).
Adopting the wrong metrics.
This is where you find yourself placing heavier emphasis on results rather than building a body of work that contributes to building your brand. Default metrics have always been skewed towards page views, clicks, likes and shares.
This makes sense when the reward is reach and a lot of work is campaign-led. However, when you produce your work and distribute it with momentum you become known. In Mark Schaefer’s book Known, digging deep becomes a commitment. Mark says, “I recommend that to do this right, you should be ready to devote about five hours a week to becoming known. And you should be ready to commit to 18 consecutive months of effort to prove your ideas. That is a lot of effort.”
How To Get More By Way Of Return For Doing The Work
Let’s paint a picture where you’re putting in the effort and achieving the visibility and buy-in you’re looking for.
How can you become more efficient and maximise those content efforts? (By maximise, I mean continue building a growing, loyal audience, generating more enquiries, better clients and revenue)
This is all about maximising the impact of what you produce and making your work go further than that initial diligence on your part.
It works like this. You create once and cut many times. I like how Katherine Ledger calls this COPE, Create Once, Post Everywhere (with thought and strategy).
For instance, your content becomes your script. Here’s the proof – in early April I shared how to get your first 10 email subscribers. The time invested was approximately 3 1/2 hours which generated the following:
✅It became a You Are The Media Bitesize Podcast (you can listen here)
✅It became the main article in the weekly YATM email
✅It became a 30 minute (free) presentation that I wanted to test out as a new YATM ‘webinar’ format
✅It became a presentation for Dorset Growth Hubs Online Business Summit (Friday May 1st)
✅It became a presentation for Festival Of Enterprise (Tuesday 12th May)
Whilst there was no fee associated with the work, the call to action was to attract new subscribers to YATM.
It was effectively a lead generation tool that attracted a new audience that came to see what YATM was for themselves.
The reason this particular article was chosen as the one that could act as a mechanism for extending YATM’s reach was because of the reality of the proposition – that achieving your first few subscribers is within everyone’s grasp. These days we all know that there’s no such thing as minimal effort resulting in huge uptake. There are no workarounds for bringing in thousands of new subscribers in a few weeks.
Don’t Over-Complicate Things
Creating content becomes easier when you realise that sharing the basics – things you may have known for a while because of your particular experience, things that people want to know but are afraid to ask precisely because they are entry-level – will have an appeal that resonates with people. And this can come straight from your own knowledge and understanding – you don’t need to pretend you’ve a Ph.D. in marketing or position yourself precariously as the world’s foremost expert.
The more you invest your time in sitting down and doing the work and not being led astray by a fear of being judged, criticised or striving for perfection, the greater the opportunity to distribute your narrative across a range of media.
Now is not the time to sit in a corner and wait for the time to be right. The time will never be right, as there will always be an excuse. A quote in Steven Pressfield’s The War Of Art says, “It’s better to be in the arena, getting stomped by the bull, than to be up in the stands or out in the parking lot.”
When you’re prepared to hunker down and create work that you then put as much effort into promoting and sharing, you find a rhythm that not only makes it easier for people to trust and commit to you, but that also helps you keep going. And that momentum and sense of responsibility is what it’s all about.