Telling Your Story
From new social media apps such as the audio sensation Clubhouse to Twitter’s soon-to-be released Spaces to those “oldies” but goodies such as Instagram, podcasts and newsletters, there is no shortage of places for telling your story, and most importantly, to BE the story.
Does that strike fear in you? Or does it make you jump for joy? Either way, for years the camera has actually been panning over to YOU, you gorgeous thing, both personally and professionally. Are you ready for your close up?
I know what you are going to say. It’s the same thing a friend of mine said as she finished the last chapter of her book about her wonderful and rich life’s story. “Who is going to care about this?” But remember that was the same thing we all said when Facebook began and look at us now.
Today, we know how much people care. Each one of us is our own publisher of our own magazine, book or TV show (metaphorically speaking). And each of these has an audience. Which is why it’s so important to pay attention to what we are saying and create content of value for those who show up for us.
TWO EXERCISES TO CREATE VALUABLE CONTENT
As I’ve been working with writers and creative entrepreneurs on personal projects and professional marketing endeavors, I’ve found a few tricks to pinpointing what is important in their stories. Here are a few exercises that are very revealing and will give you a direction that is uniquely your own in a crowded market.
- Begin with a title for something that happens in your day. Starting there, fill in the story behind it. It can be a small morsel from the day or perhaps a huge watershed moment. Either way, title it.
- Write your own Amazon blurb. What if someone you didn’t know asked you why they should know you, spend a few hours over dinner with you, care about you? These are the same things we ask when we go on Amazon looking for a book. The blurbs get us interested. They pinpoint what the story is about, why we should care and ultimately if it’s right for us or not. Both of these exercises help you reverse engineer how you see yourself and what your story is.
WHERE ARE WE TELLING YOUR STORY TODAY?
Spontaneous conversations are cropping up all over Clubhouse. I’ve been having fun on this new (ish) social media app. It’s a drop-in audio chat that is like a live podcast, radio call-in show, and party line rolled into one. The other day I was simply testing a room and people I knew began popping in. It reminded me of running into people in the hallway of a conference. I miss those random and spontaneous conversations!
Web strategist Jeremiah Owyang calls social audio apps like Clubhouse the “Goldilocks” medium …” Text is not enough, and video is too much; social audio is just right.” Read more of what he has to say about social audio apps here.
Personally, I like the serendipity of Clubhouse: Dipping in and out of rooms where conversations are going on. It’s like wandering onto a playground and playing a pick-up game whenever you feel like it.
Many of these pick-up conversations aren’t happening anywhere else right now. If you’re there, connect with me (I’m @liesegardner) — because, unlike other social platforms, Clubhouse is actually better when you follow more people.
ONE VERY HELPFUL BRAND THERAPY TIP
While on the subject of social media, let me drop a little cautionary tale. Pay attention to your Instagram passwords and recovery emails. This past year there might have been changes in your personnel. Were they tied to your Instagram account? When staff is in motion their connection to your social media accounts might be the last thing you check, but be sure you have a recovery email and mobile phone on the account that YOU have access to (I always suggest a gmail that you can always get to). If you don’t it’s VERY hard, if not impossible in some cases, to retrieve it.
Photo: Image: @kenyan_library on Instagram. I highly suggest following him if you are a lover of words, books, cats and gorgeous photos of all three!