We talk a lot about being consistent with your messaging when it comes to pace (at least weekly), voice (fun, professional or somewhere in between) and platform (social networks, email newsletters, marketing pieces). One of the questions that we hear all the time is “How do you come up with things that are worth saying to your audience?”
I have been doing this for so long that it comes naturally. I have to remind myself that not everyone has experience writing, thinking like a blogger, or paying attention to the things that happen every day that are worth talking about. You might be doing this kind of activity for the first time in your professional career.
I thought it would be good to walk you through a day in my life and show you the many opportunities that occur to talk about your staff, your company, your clients and more!
Before I do that, here is a quick list of things that you should consider talking about:
September 7th, 2011
6am – Personal and Business – For Me, They Are The Same Thing
Got up and went to LifeTime Fitness with my brother Mike Terry who works for Ingenix. Talked about the fact that Adam Rector from Beautiful Outdoors was coming by the house today to give me an estimate on some landscaping work in the back yard. Mike mentioned that he needs to have some work done in his back yard as well and wanted me to have Adam give him a call. (Later in the afternoon, I did refer Adam to Mike = Word of Mouth Referrals in Action #1)
8am – Creating my Daily To Do List, Checking Emails, Etc.
Came back to the house to clean up and get to work. Checked my email and started making follow up calls… this involved a list of people and companies that is too long to even try to include here. Took me about an hour.
9am – Mic Rocks, T-Shirt Talks
One of the things on my follow up list was to talk to Mic about the “Avoiding People That Suck” T-Shirts. The article he wrote was a huge hit and Brett Gibson at AdventureTech asked when the T-Shirts would be available! (Mic is creative and driven and I could have written a blog article about him!) He is working with a good friend of his, Molly Beacom at Image Market on pricing, etc.
10am – Public Service Announcement
Started errands, including going to Commerce Bank to make a Blue Gurus deposit and then to the post office to mail off my quarterly estimated tax payments. Yes, they need to be sent by September 15th, so count this as a friendly reminder to get on that if you do quarterly estimates.
11am – New Client
Got a call from Donna Rimbo at Christ Church in Overland Park. She was referred to us by one of our clients, Tommy Wilson at the Downtown Council of Kansas City. (Word of Mouth Referrals in Action #2) We had a great conversation for 30 minutes about a potential project we could do together. I told her how we do what we do. She mentioned that their committee had been talking about this project and when Donna mentioned that she was going to talk to Blue Gurus that one of the committee members started raving about us. (Yay!) She said based on our brief conversation, the strength of the referrals and the respect of peers, they are not looking at other companies to help them with this project! A new client for Blue Gurus and a testament (nice word choice?) to what we keep saying about the power of word of mouth and building a positive reputation for doing what you say you are going to do.
12:30pm – Technical Work
My friend Matt Simpson, owner of Infusion, asked me to help him out with a client project involving WordPress. I spent 90 minutes getting the project done and following up with Matt on next steps. Oh, and scheduled lunch together for September 21st at Nick and Jake’s. I had to include this detail because so many people say “I don’t care where people are going for lunch.” Hey, if you don’t care… fine. It’s part of my story though. You won’t care about every part of this story, that is normal and even expected. Some people live near Nick and Jake’s. Some people own Nick and Jake’s. Some people love or hate Nick and Jake’s with a story of their own. You get the point… it’s not just about what I had for lunch.
2:30pm – Writing My Blog Update
Sat down to write my blog update with nothing particular in mind. Thought about all that had happened today and thought about the fact that there are dozens of stories involving people and companies that might be worth talking about. Realized we hadn’t done an article on the blogging process, so why not document the day!
If you read this whole article, you prove my point. This thing was WAY TOO LONG. You must care about me, Mic and Blue Gurus to have gotten through it… and that is the whole point. People want to hear what is going on in your life because they CARE about you. In a 9 hour period today, I connected with dozens of people, representing dozens of companies. Helped my brother out. Earned a new client through a word of mouth referral. Did billable work for a client. Crossed off the majority of the things on my To Do list.
I could expand on any one of these stories to create a great article that talks about specific people and companies. (Did you recognize any of the people or companies? Do you know them? Have you done business with them?) This stuff matters. Look at what you and your company are involved in on a daily basis and tell your stories!