Are you creating content?
How often are you writing a blog post? Once a week? Twice a week? Once a month?
How about your newsletter? Are you sending something out once a week?
Oh, and videos…are you posting a video consistently?
Don’t forget guest blog posts… they help your SEO. How often are you getting those out?
It’s no wonder that an entrepreneur who is in the business of content creation gets overwhelmed by HOW MUCH content they “have to” produce.
You could even throw into that mix podcast, webinars, and speeches as well. … Oh my.
But beyond the struggle of just PRODUCING – the legwork or typing, filming, editing, etc. – there is the challenge of figuring out WHAT to create.
…or perhaps, to be more specific, what SHOULD you create?
Let me ‘splain.
As en expert in your field, you know a whole heck of a lot that you can share with the world. And you’ve also discovered that you can get paid – handsomely – for this knowledge. Excellent!
But, getting paid and producing content means that you are faced with a very tricky crossroads.
What do you share with paying clients? And what do you share online for FREE?
Now, you’ve probably seen 1,000 marketers who have told you to “give your best stuff away for free.”
BUT THEN, a little voice whispers in your head….”psst, if you give all your best stuff away for free, then what the hell will you create after you’ve given it away? I mean, it’s your best stuff. Give the treasure away, you have no more treasure.”
And there you have it, the two thoughts that leave you at a content creation standstill.
And this is why you procrastinate. This is why you’re not consistent. This is why you aren’t making as big of a splash in your industry as you could.
At the heart of these two paralyzing thoughts is a SCARCITY mindset around what you are creating.
So, let’s examine and attack these two and put them into submission
What do you give to paying clients and what do you give away for free?
The simple rule of thumb here is: tell them what they need to do in your free content; tell them how to do it for your paying clients.
In your free content, you are likely opening your readers’/watchers’/listeners’ minds to possibilities that they didn’t even know existed.
They might not know that it’s possible to eat a ton of food and still lose weight.
The might not know that certain business models aren’t scalable.
They might not know that a few body language cues could be signals for influential opportunities.
When creating content for free, you could ask yourself:
- What do they currently believe to be true that isn’t?
- What opportunities are they not currently aware of?
- What pain points are they still trying to solve?
- What are they currently doing that they think is a good idea, but isn’t?
- What are they avoiding, but shouldn’t?
…just to name a few jumping off points.
Then, the how is what you get paid for.
In your free content, you are likely writing about the highlights of going from point A to point Z. From beginning, to success. You might also share a few star nuggets in between – points D, I, and R, as it were.
But the magic sauce really lies in all those other connection points that wouldn’t fit in your 800 word article, 10 minute video, or 30 minute podcast.
You’ve likely given them enough information to get them on their way and see milestone successes, but not quite enough information for them to know how to fully navigate through typical challenges or speed bumps.
There is another point of view for what to share for free, and what to hold back.
And this school of thought is….share it all for free. The what and the how.
The logic behind this is…
There is no power in the knowing. The true power only shows up in the doing.
So, your clients will pay you to help them do. While your readers, and the like, will view you as a valuable and trusted resource up to when they see the need and/or can afford to hire you.
Now, if you’re wondering, which school of thought do I personally follow when it comes to what to share for free and what to get paid for, the answer is: both.
Sometimes I give away everything and the kitchen sink. And sometimes I tease out enough content to just get the consumer of that content going.
Typically, the differentiator is a logistical one.
There are situations and topics that it makes perfect sense to give the consumer a full behind-the-scenes look. And then there are times when that would make absolutely no sense whatsoever. If I were to give them everything, then they would be overwhelmed…they wouldn’t see how all the pieces fit together…they wouldn’t have the practice to watch it play out…etc.
I do believe that both approaches are absolutely legitimate.
I also find these two guidelines to be empowering for me to feel free to give my best stuff for free…without any doubt or guilt.
If I keep creating content with my best stuff for free, then what else would I have to say NEXT?
Ah, yes. The business version of “will he still like me if I put out?” conundrum.
Well, strictly speaking from a business perspective, I can confidently say that the answer is “Yes” to that question.
And here is why….
When you hold back from sharing your best stuff, you are actually holding YOURSELF back.
You stay in a scarcity frame of mind. You become miserly with your thoughts.
And your thoughts are just like any financial currency. If you hold on to it, it will never grow. But if you invest it, you will get an ROI. Expanded thought.
I believe that all experts should evolve.
I don’t care for comedians that have been doing the same jokes and routines for years. I don’t like keynote speakers who have a stale speech that they’ve been delivering since the 90s.
I believe that if an expert isn’t evolving, then they are no longer an expert.
For example, Tim Ferriss broke out into the marketplace with The Four Hour Workweek – a book about work/life hacks that will help you make more money in less time.
Then, he evolved to writing The Four Hour Body, fitness and nutrition hacks to help you get the “perfect” body in less time.
And lastly (so far), The Four Hour Chef, hacks on how to be the perfect cook, without all the snobbery and fuss.
Three completely different topics. There is, of course, a through-line in his work. He is all about how to get the best results with the minimum required effort.
Another example, Ramit Sethi who is best known for his book I Will Teach You To Be Rich. His psychology and finance know-how brought a unique angle to the world of personal finance.
And just the other week, I saw that he is now launching a program to help job seekers land their ideal job. This is from a guy who hasn’t worked a “real job” – meaning, as an employee – for over a decade. He’s a business owner.
He has evolved.
Now, my point isn’t whether or not these two examples – or countless others – were right or wrong, successful or not in their evolutions (though these two, in particular, have been successful in their iterations).
The point here is that they would never have been able to reach those next levels of evolution, if they first hadn’t shared the BEST of what they already knew.
So, what phase of your evolution are you missing out on because you’re holding back?
What new insights are not being revealed because you haven’t been shining a light for others in areas that you know to be true?
What can you give to your followers now that will force you to grow for the future?
Without sharing it all as much as possible, you will never be faced with the next-level of challenges to solve. Which means, you won’t be able to serve your clients at a higher or deeper level.
Don’t stagnate your growth.
What one thing, of your best material, can you share TODAY – as a blog post, a status update, or a video?
Start the evolution, now.