Whether you've been on Instagram for a while, or you're a complete newb, I'm going to dazzle you with 3 easy ways to use Instagram for your Etsy shop (or any other ecommerce site!).
Firstly, Instagram is THE place to go for a quick jolt of inspiration on travel, food, home life, dogs, etc. It's also a place to share your intimate moments, side-hustle snapshots, and creativity on steroids. In other words, Instagram smacks you with a hit of dopamine and tickles those pleasure centers.
But before we move on to what the app can do for us, let's make sure we have a handle of taking great photos. It all starts with photos, and I have just a few tips that will help you create stunning visuals.
Better Instagram Photos:
1) Use natural light. Whether you're photographing jewelry or baby clothes, natural light is going to be your best friend. Get near a window or go outside (just stay out of direct sunlight).
2) Use a nice background. Ideas are endless here. Use a light or dark background with little to no pattern. A rustic wood tray painted white can do the trick. A large piece of gorgeous paper from Paper Source can work as well. Try and choose something you can use for all of your products. *Use stock photos for digital items like planner inserts and other printables.
3) Use complimentary props. Professional photographers have props at their fingertips, and you should think like a professional! What compliments your product? A succulent? An iPhone? Both? Use things your customer might use in the real world. Have fun with this!
Want 8 free Instagram images? Jump inside the FREE resource library.
Now that you're an expert on taking images, let's move on to 3 easy ways to use Instagram for your Etsy shop.
1) Instagram Multiple Images
Until very recently, Instagram only allowed for 1 image upload per post. Now we get up to 10 photos that people can scroll through. You can see there are multiple images by the ghosted icon on the top. Use this option when you have multiple views of a product or if you have several products you would like to showcase. This gives you more eyes on your products in less time. Thanks, Instagram!
2) Instagram Stories
This has to be one of my favorites because it gives more of a real time glimpse into your everyday. People want to learn more about you and the products you make. They also want to know how you source them and how they are made. Stories allow you to go just a little bit deeper into your business and connect on a more real level. *Listen to this 5 minute 'social bit' on Instagram stories and how to access them. I challenge you to post on your Instagram story today!
3) Get a Linktree Account
I just recently found out about this great resource. At the time of this writing, we only get one live website url link in our profile. You can change this one link everyday if you want to, but it gets to be a hassle. With Linktree, you can use your one and only link, but send people to multiple places. These are screenshots of the 6 Figure Chick's Instagram account. You can see the linktree link in her profile. When someone clicks on the link, they are given multiple options on where they might like to go. Genius!
Now it's your turn. Are you using Instagram's features for your shop? You can tag me @cannonsocialmedia to let me know you've got a story to share.
Cheers to Creativity and Business!
PS: Click on the button below to join hundreds of other creatives inside the free resource library. I'd love to have you!
Are you running video ads on Facebook for your product or service?
Video in general has exploded on Facebook over the past year, and video ads have proven to be less expensive and higher converting in many cases. But there's one giant mistake advertisers are making with their video ads. *I'm raising my hand here, too!
I'm currently running ads to a webinar for my latest course, The Front Page Guide to Etsy. I decided to test a simple video ad and run it on the desktop, right column and mobile news feeds. The video ad was working well, my copy seemed to be resonating with the audience I selected and all seemed good. Until I saw a big mistake.
As I was looking at the reports for my ads in ads manager, I decided to look more closely at how each placement was doing. The right column was getting clicks, but not conversions. I took a look at the ad in preview mode on the newsfeed, and that's where I found the mistake.
When you run a video ad in the right column, it doesn't play automatically like in the regular news feed. But it does have a nice play button over the image, which gets people to click. Here's an example of my ad in the right column.
When running video ads in the right column, there are two places to click. On the nice big play button AND in the copy just below the video image.
Here's the mistake!
If you don't put the destination url link inside the text of your ad, the awesome video ad that you're paying for doesn't send them anywhere!
When people click on the play button to see your video ad, the ad opens up in a large preview window and the video starts playing. Here's what my ad looks like when someone presses the play button.
I forgot to put the link inside all the text I created. I also left the url out of the video itself. With a sidebar video ad, we need to make it easy for people to click over to the destination page (landing page) in order to perform the action we want them to take.
In this case, I wanted them to sign up to register for the webinar, but there was no link for them to click on to sign up. BIG MISTAKE!
Once they click out of the video preview, it's not likely they'll realize they need to click on the text below the image to be automatically taken to the landing page. Such a small thing that can make a very big difference in your conversions and ad spend.
Next time you run a video run it on the right column, make sure to put the url inside the text of your ad, and in the video itself (if you know it isn't going to change).
Now, I have the habit of putting the url inside all the text on all of my ads. I've been relying too much on the 'Learn More' or 'Watch More' buttons, and will now include the links all over!
Let me know if you've been adding the links inside your ads.
I have been dazzled by handmade creations ever since my boyfriend's mother taught me how to mod- podge Easter eggs with napkins and real eggs.
Twenty-six years later, and married to said boyfriend, our family has been crafting ever since. My obsession is with Epoxy and German Glass Glitter with the addition of fancy paper. The rest of the ladies in my family paint, sew, and decorate.
It was always something I did on the side, like many of you. It was a way to relax after the pressures of career and then motherhood. A few years back, I went gung ho for a season and blended my marketing and maker personalities and created a shop on Etsy. Sue B. Zimmerman asked us to be on her Creative Live 3-day Instagram Marketing class, and our shop was off to the races after that.
Having different shops, online stores and working with small business owners has taught me a few things that will help you get your listings to the front page of Etsy search. If you desire more traffic, more sales, and more time to do what you love, which I'm guessing is to create more of your amazing products, then you're in the right place.
5 Ways to Get Your Listings on the Front Page of Etsy
For the past few months, I've done a deep dive into Etsy SEO and have gotten my listings on the front page of my personal Etsy shop. After big changes in my crafting business, I needed to establish a few ways to get my listings seen. The following is exactly how I did it. You can also watch the free webinar to see these steps in action.
1. Canvas the Community
A big part of listing your product is to see how your product is positioned and marketed through Etsy. A quick search on Etsy AND Google will reveal trends around your product. *Tip: we want to search on Google as well because it is the No.1 search tool and people who search on Google will likely search the exact same way on Etsy.
2. Canvas the Competition
Next, we want to take a look at the other shops with products similar to ours. If you are a hand-letterer, you'll see which shops comes up on the front page of Etsy and in the first search result when you type that query in. Take a look at which words they use in their listing titles, descriptions and tags.
3. The Number 1 Tool You Need to Use!
My favorite and free tool to help us rise to the front page of Etsy is the Google Keyword Planner. This tool reveals how many searches each query gets. For instance, did you know that the keyword search faux taxidermy gets up to 10k average monthly searches! *Tip: you'll need a Google Analytics and Adwords account (both free) to use the tool.
4. Etsy Promotion
Once you use the 3 strategies above, you're ready to promote your shop to get more awareness. Download this Etsy promotion calculator to make sure your shop listings are profitable and that promotion makes sense for you.
5. Getting to Know Facebook Ads
Facebook ads are a GREAT way to expand your customer base by running ads to blog posts or videos describing how to make your product. Once they arrive on your blog, they can opt-in to get your newsletter which might provide new product news, free templates and coupons. In order to get on your newsletter list, they'll provide an email that you can use to grow your business!
Join the The Front Page Guide to Etsy Masterclass by clicking the button below to learn about an Etsy Facebook Ads strategy.
Let me know how using these SEO strategies help get your listings on the front page and increase your customer base. Feel free to use the hashtag #myetsyseo
One of the biggest road blocks to running a Facebook ad campaign is the thought of losing money.
I totally get this. We work hard for our money, and don't want to throw it down on something that's a gamble.
But right now, Facebook is the best place to advertise for a few simple reasons:
So, now that we've established why we should be advertising on Facebook, let's save some money doing it!
The first thing is to create great content. Blogging is one of the best ways to do this. It let's Google know that you are an expert in your niche, and that your website is not a stagnant cesspool. Ha!
If you've already got some blog posts in the tank, a good second step is to create content upgrades inside of those posts. If your post is about how to create a successful Instagram account for your dog, then your content upgrade might be a checklist on '10 Steps to Lapping it Up on Instagram with Your Dog.' This would be a button linked to a .PDF file in Dropbox where your readers can access it.
Once you've got your content established, it's time to start running money-saving ads on Facebook. First, identify your most popular blog posts. Do this by heading over to Google Analytics-Search Console-Landing Page. Here are my 10 most popular posts.
Pick out three of your favorite posts, make sure they are optimized in the following ways:
Now create a custom audience on Facebook for each of the blog posts you decided to run ads to. We aren't running the ads yet! We are prepping to slash ad spend so stick with me.
If this is new to you, simply go to Ads Manager-Audiences and click 'Create Audience' and then 'Custom Audience.'
Now, enter all the urls you'll be sending ads to.
This is where a lot of people miss the mark! They don't put the time in BEFORE they place their ads, so money isn't so much slashed, but spent. Prepping for ads will save you money, I promise.
At this point, we want to think about our call-to-action one more time. What happens after they click on your ad, resonate with your blog post, and decide they want to receive your weekly news? Where do they land after they opt in?
My suggestion is that you send them to another page that can also be pixeled as someone who 'opted in.' Creating a custom audience for everyone who landed on this page, means we can eliminate them from seeing the ad again, thus, slashing our ad spend. Woot!
Let's briefly talk about the ways we've slashed our ad spend without even running ads yet:
Wow! You've been very busy.
Now, let's learn how to slash ad spend within the ads themselves. I want you to 'begin with the end in mind.' We want trackability. This is the key to slashing ad spend. We want to track both, people who land on our posts, and people who convert into subscribers as a result of our ads. We'll go through a similar process for creating an audience to create a Custom Conversion.
You are a rock star now! You should have the glowing confidence that you are not wasting any money and that you'll have a successful ad campaign.
Ok. We've arrived! It's time to run ads to 'ad slashing audiences.' People who already know you, your work and your brand. We'll run ads to:
Let's recap, shall we? What we've in this initial slashing step, is pixel everyone who lands on our posts and opts in. We've created a custom conversion that we can track. In this example, we want to know how many people converted and opted in to download our Instagram Doggie checklist.
Now, comes the fun part. Out of these three blog posts, one will emerge as the golden child of your content. At this point, you can turn off the other ads and begin to scale the one doing well. You can slowly add money to this breakout winner and turn off the other ads.
Remember a while back I said to begin with the end in mind? Let's say you're thinking long term and you want to create a whole workshop around Insta Dogs. You'll want to get as many people as possible to opt in to your checklist because these people could eventually become paying customers for your long term goal.
With a strategy in place, you're slashing ad spend and have a clear path for what your ads will accomplish for you.
If you want to learn the step-by-step process for placing a trackable and money-saving Facebook ad, download my personal checklist below.
We are going to optimize the Gold Antler on the left. Let's take a look at how we are currently listed on Etsy when someone searches for Gold Antler.
Since our antlers can be used to decorate the home, we want to optimize for the 'Home & Living' category. The competition isn't very large, so a few tweaks should help us out. Let's click on Home & Living to see what we can find out. We showed up in this category, yay! However, we are in the 6th row. People may not scroll down that far, so we want to see if there is anything else we can do to get in the top 3 rows of the front page. Right away, I can see that my photo isn't the best. So let's add a few more photos to our listing and change the main image.
I made the mistake of only posting one image in my listing. It doesn't show people how big it is or how it looks in relation to how they might use it in the real world. So let's add a few more.
I added more photos with some real world context, and changed the primary image to reflect the one I thought was best in this group. Now when people view this listing, they'll have more images that create a story for them and inspire them to think of how they can use this product in their own home.
Now let's head over to Google's Keyword planner under Tools in Adwords.
I want to find out how people might be searching for antlers within Google. The reason why we would do this is because people generally use the same search terms across all sites. Meaning if they use the term 'gold antlers home decor' on Google, they'll probably use the same phrase on Etsy, Pinterest, Ebay, etc.
Google will help me figure out how many people search for Gold Antlers. Currently, my title says, 'Gold Antler with German Glitter Glass.' That may not be the best description. Let's see what Google thinks about my choice of headline. I'll type in Gold Antler and ask Google to get ideas.
According to Google, the term Gold Antler gets between 100 and 1000 searches each month. The competition is high, meaning that people are paying for this keyword, which is good news for me. It means that I chose a good keyword that people actually use. Let's take a look at one of my competitors and see what they are using for their title.
This shop is using a lot of phrases or 'long-tail keywords' in their title. I didn't really use any other than Gold Antler. Not very thorough. This shop is targeting Gold Antler Decor, Faux Taxidermy, Gold Antler Wall Decor, Antler Coat Rack, Gold Antler Jewelry Rack, Gold Antler Nursery Decor and Stag Head Decor.
Now, I can plug these keywords into Google Keyword Planner and see how many searches these terms get each month. Chances are, if this is a popular shop, they are using keywords that work, so I can probably just add the ones they used and that make sense for my product. But research is fun, so let's see what Google has to say about Faux Taxidermy. That's a new term I didn't think of and I'm curious to see how many searches it gets! Surprise! That term gets between 1000-10,000 searches each month. Who knew?
Right away, I can see that I'm losing out on some eyeballs because I'm not using search terms that would help my product rank higher. For instance, Ceramic Deer Head is a term I could use since my product is made out of ceramic material. It's not quite the whole head, but I can still use it. Paperweight is also a highly searched term, so I'll use that in my title as well. I also really like 'rustic decor' and 'rustic elegance decor.' Now, let's look at Etsy's native search prompts. Let's see what they say people are searching for with regard to antlers.
When I type in 'deer' I can see a few things that I might be able to use. Just 'Deer Antler' would be good. Also, 'Deer Decor.' I'll add those to my title too. I decide that the 'long tail keyword' that I want to use is going to be 'Gold Antler Decor.' This is the phrase that I want my product to show up on the top of the search page for, so I'm tucking that in the back of my mind.
Now, here is my very sad description! It really pays (literally) to take your time and fill out your description completely.
I'm missing some huge opportunities here to really position my product in the mind of my potential buyer. They have to feel an emotional connection to my product in order to see it as something for their home. First, I will replace the word synthetic with the word 'ceramic.' Let's go take a look at my competitor and see what they have in their description. This, along with the keywords I found in Google Keyword Planner, will help me rank higher in search.
Check out the difference in my competitor's description! Oh my, but do I have a lot of work to do. This must've been my last listing in a long day of listing, so I got lazy. Lazy doesn't pay off! What I like about this is that they are able to use their keywords again, and use even more like 'rustic cabin decor' and 'perfect for a man cave.' I am definitely taking notes and will go back and fill in my description more thoroughly! You can take a look at my updated listing here, if it hasn't sold already! Here is a screenshot of my dismal stats from Etsy over the past month. 26 views but only a few favorites and no sales. Hopefully, all of our hard work will pay off. I will keep checking on this listing and see how well our SEO work helped us.
Now it's your turn. Are you thinking of third-party seller sites like Etsy and even Pinterest like search engines? I sure hope this post inspires you to update your listings and test out your SEO skills. Let me know if you do. I'd love to hear how it improved your listings.
*Running Facebook Ads can be good for SEO too. Download the 3-Step Facebook Ads Worksheet for Makers and start planning your shop advertising strategy.
*UPDATE - After spending some time working on all of these SEO strategies, my listing became the very first one on Etsy for the phrase 'Gold Antler Decor.' Right after the ads and I jumped past my competitor! You can do this too. Let me know how it goes!
Whether you're starting out with a brand-spanking new Etsy shop or are a seasoned Etsy seller, Facebook Ads can be a great way to increase awareness about you and your amazing creative work.
Not only that, you can use these ads as a way to build a community of VIPs by offering something of value in exchange for an email address. This email address is your welcome mat to connect with them in the future.
Now, you may have heard that ads don't work because people are on Facebook to be entertained. To laugh at Aunt Edna's fruitcake fail, or learn about trending celebrity news, but with over 1 billion users, your potential customers are likely there and want to know about you!
If you're not running Facebook ads yet, here is a strategy that might make sense for you.
The idea behind this strategy is to select a product from your shop (or a few in the same category) and create a landing page for those products. You might also create a freebie or other type of giveaway for people who land on this page.
Let's stop there. You might be asking, 'What's a landing page?' A landing page allows you to track all the traffic from your ad with the Facebook Pixel and Google Analytics.
A landing page can be a special page on your website, or one from a third party like LeadPages. Whatever you choose, you will put your Facebook pixel on this landing page, and you'll run ads to this page.
*For more detailed information on all things pixels, download this free ebook about laying a strong foundation for Facebook Ads.
Etsy doesn't allow you to place a pixel on the backend of your shop, so this is a way for you to track qualified leads. Woo-hoo!
Here is a quick and dirty explanation of your new Etsy ad strategy: Download the worksheet I created for you outlining all three of these steps here.
1) Create a landing page for your amazing products.
2) Create a Facebook Ad that sends people to this landing page when they click on the ad.
3) Create a call-to-action on your landing page. Usually this is an opt-in to a freebie or discount
At this point, because your call-to-action is so ah-mazing, they'll give you their email and First name. After that, you can automatically route them to your shop if you want to. Think of your landing page as a valuable stop on the journey to your store.
I'm excited for you to implement this new Facebook Ads strategy for your Etsy shop. Download the free worksheet that will help you outline these three step for your own Facebook Ads Strategy.
Cheers to awesome Facebook Ads.
You've spent time on an epic blog post, a perfect handmade product, or healthy eating challenge. Now it's time to shout your message to the world with a Facebook Ad. Only, how do you make sure they're working. How can you track the ROI?
These 10 steps will help you create the perfect ad for your product or service, show it to the right audience, and make sure clicks, opt-ins and sales are a direct result of your ad.
Putting these steps in place has saved me a lot of money because I can track the ROI of my ads. Before putting these strategies in place, I didn't have a real sense of where my new customers were coming from. Each of the following steps builds upon the last. Put these steps in place before your next ad campaign and spend your money with confidence knowing your ads are working for you.
10 Steps to Put in Place Before Your Next Ad Campaign
1) Install the Facebook Pixel on your website.
If you are a seasoned marketer, you'll likely already have this pixel on your website. By the end of 2016 the new Facebook Pixel will be the only one available and this new pixel needs to be on your site. If you don't have the ability to put the new pixel on your site, check with your web designer and make sure it is updated and installed.
2) Decide which conversion your ad will pursue.
If you want people to opt-in to your newsletter, the conversion goal you'll pursue with your ad is 'complete registration.' You'll add a snippet of code to the main Facebook Pixel to track this conversion. This modified pixel goes on the 'thank you for opting in' page, after your new prospect has opted in. To read more about exactly how to perform each of the steps, download your free ebook on 10 Essential Steps Before Running Facebook Ads here.
3) Creating a stunning image.
Facebook has a lot of rules around images. Free resources like Canva make it easy to create amazing images in seconds. Your ad image should be 1200pixels by 628pixels and should not include a lot of text or suggestive words like 'tips' 'tricks' or 'guarantee.'
4) Create a 5-step opt-in formula.
If you're trying to grow your new customer prospect list or email list, you'll want to create a system for gaining new valuable leads. This is what it looks like:
Step 1: Do research on competitors, peers and target market to see what topics are being promoted and what your market is interested in.
Step 2: After doing research, you'll discover how you might solve a problem for your target market. This is where you'll brainstorm ideas on how to help them.
Step 3: Create a worksheet, checklist or cheatsheet you can give away for free to your target market in exchange for an email address you'll use to provide even more value to them.
Step 4: Create a form or landing page where the exchange of the freebie and email address will happen.
This can be on your own website or on a landing page provider like LeadPages.
Step 5: Connect your email service provider.
Now that the exchange has taken place, you can create an automated email funnel to continue to communicate and provide value to your new subscriber. If you use Mailchimp, InfusionSoft or other email provider, you'll be able to integrate that with your landing page for automatic exchanges.
5) Set up UTM link tracking.
Now we're getting into some advanced techniques to ensure your ads are making money for you. You'll need to create a special link to put in your ad, so that you can track the path from your ad to your opt-in. To find out exactly how to do this, download the free ebook on all of these steps, complete with screenshots.
6) Create Form or Landing Page
I used to collect email registrations with a form on my website. This worked fine, however, my new subscriber had to wait for me to send the free ebook, or cheat sheet manually. Now, I use LeadPages to make this process automatic. This happens in my sleep or while I'm on vacation. Win/Win.
7) Create a Google Goal to track conversions.
Did you know it was possible to ask Facebook and Google to talk to each other? When you create your ads, you can ask Google to track a goal for your ad. If you want to make sure your Facebook Ads are working for you, create a goal in Google and ask Google to track your campaigns right inside Google Analytics. This is a game changer, and I show you exactly how to do this in the free ebook mentioned above.
8) Know who you are targeting by developing your ideal client persona.
All of this tracking and research is fantastic, but if you don't have a handle on exactly who you are targeting, it is all a waste. And wasting time and money is not what we want to do in our business. Identify your target market by making a list of demographics specific to who you are trying to reach. How old are they? What music do they like to listen to? Which celebrity do they get trending information from? What do they like to do in their spare time? Cook? Hike? Read? The answers to these questions will make your advertising that much stronger.
9) Now it's time to create the message for our ad.
Copywriting is such an important part in creating your ad. You want to take all the research you have done and use the same language your ideal client would use. It's the difference between using the word radio vs. stereo. Or glasses vs. spectacles. These seem like small details but could be the difference between people who click through to your landing page or not.
10) Using Facebook Audience Insights to target the right people.
With over 1 billion people on Facebook every single day, they know a lot of information about their users. We can tap into this knowledge by asking Facebook to target your exact market. Research on your market will help you target people who like Oprah Winfrey and create handmade products they sell on Etsy. The power of targeting your exact market will create new subscribers and customers who want the exact thing you are offering.
There you have it! The top 10 things you should do before running your next Facebook Ad campaign. Putting these things in place will make your ad costs go down, your relevancy score go up and your sales and opt-ins increase!
Don't forget to claim your free ebook that will explain in detail all of these steps. Cheers to tracking Facebook Ads ROI!
Are you running ad campaigns on Facebook and feel dizzy when it comes to calculating your return on investment? Have no fear. I'm going to show you how to accurately calculate ROI on Facebook Ads, and offer a calculator to make it fast and simple for you. *Get the calculator here.
What is ROI
We want to make sure that for every dollar we give Facebook, that it generates some kind of return. According to this article in The Simple Dollar, an annual rate of return on long-term stock investments might be around 7%. For people looking to invest, this gives them a number to shoot for, knowing that the market is volatile and needs to be looked at annually and over the course of many years.
When looking at Facebook Ads ROI, many only look at their Cost Per Click, and forget to calculate what their Cost Per LEAD actually is. In the example below, my cost per click on a recent campaign is .79 cents, which is very good by Facebook standards. However, my cost per lead is much higher based on other factors at $6.58. Let's break these numbers down and get to the all important ROI.
To calculate ROI for Facebook Ads, there are 4 important numbers to know. These numbers are taken from a recent ad campaign I did for an ebook:
Knowing these numbers will help us take a step by step approach to calculating these next important metrics that will eventually get us to our ROI:
TAKE A DEEP BREATH!
Many people running Facebook Ads only concentrate on their CPC (cost per click), but if you want to know your true ROI, calculating your CPL and CPA will get you to a true ROI.
I created the following spreadsheet for you in Google Drive to help you plug in all those numbers and instantly get your ROI. No need for you to do the complicated equations above. Click the image for the spreadsheet.
If you're running Facebook Ads to generate leads ONLY, just use the spreadsheet to calculate your Cost Per Lead. In my case, I will be creating a new program soon, and just want to generate enough leads to be able to share my new product later. Since the product isn't created yet, I don't have any sales numbers at this time.
I hope this helps you get a clearer picture of how your Facebook Ad campaigns are working for you.
I just got done sending a letter to my weekly email subscribers, who I call VIP's. Because they are! This week was all about Uber Virgins and Lost Credit Cards.
I go into details about my weekend Uber adventure, but here, I'll just share the 3 Uber strategies I learned that you can use for your small business. *If you want to get my weekly adventures and never miss a post, sign up here.
Uber is that handy app that sends a driver in their own car to pick you up and take you where you want to go. I've only used it a handful of times, but it feels a little bit like when you're in Vegas and take a taxi everywhere. Only minus the lines, bright lights and payment process.
The Uber experience is incredibly simple, efficient and feels a little dangerous, but in a socially acceptable sort of way.
I wanted to find out more about Uber's social media presence and what we can learn from it. Here are 3 Uber strategies we can all implement in our small businesses today.
3 uber strategies...
I'm brainstorming ways I can incorporate these 3 strategies in my own business. Let me know in the comments what you think and how you might apply these to your business.
Fall is the perfect time to reduce the activities in your business like a beautiful red wine reduction.
The end result of a perfect reduction is a richness and sweetness applied to flourless chocolate cake or a deliciously seared piece of meat. In a culture where it’s hip to add the next shiny object to your handbag of activities, I want to encourage you to edit and reduce the non-essentials to get to the richness and sweetness of your business and life.
You have countless things to do as a creative small business owner and it would be impossible for you to do it all. But you try and so do I. It wasn’t until I started reading Essentialism - The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown, that I started applying this notion of reducing and editing in my business and life.
The key premise of the book is to do less, only better. An essentialist asks himself, “What problem do I want?” “What do I want to go big on?” What we normally do is ask ourselves, “How can I do more?” “How can I fit it in?” What ends up happening is the experience of overwhelm.
In business, I’ve had to say no to many things in the last year after saying yes to just about everything. Now, I’m only focusing on a few key things that will make the greatest impact. I’m adopting another popular principle, Pareto’s Law which states that 80% of profitability (not just revenue, but profits of time, happiness, etc.) comes from 20% of our output. Instead, I was spending 80% of my output on what I thought was essential to generate the same amount of profit.
In life, I was spending a lot of time on non-essential thinking about the future, the past and my imagined state of both. Imagining what could have happened or what could be. The book helped me to focus only on what I could control in this very moment right now. It helped me to focus on facts.
How can you apply this notion of editing and reducing in your business? Which social media activities are driving the most traffic to your website? Are these the same social media platforms sending qualified traffic that actually convert?
Are people just liking your Instagram photos but not clicking on your profile link to find out more?
Take some time this Fall to do some analyzing. Make some edits and reduce your activities to what is most profitable in time, happiness and revenue. You’ll find yourself in the sweetness and richness of an essential life.
P.S. I have ways to help you focus on the essentials right inside my free resource library. What season of social media are you in? Facebook Ads? Email Marketing? Social Media 101? It's all inside - see you there!