If You Are Making This Mistake as a Content Creator, You Are Losing Too Much Money and Probably Wasting Your Time

Photo by Wolfgang Hasselmann on Unsplash

It’s not new.

I see this all the time. So many content creators spend hours and hours online, creating content on different platforms, completely driven by an insatiable need to be seen.

They fire content after content, spurred on by a hellish dopamine high and itching for the next dose of notifications to let them know they are doing great. 

Needing to be seen and heard is not a bad thing in and of itself. This is an essential part of what makes us human and what drives us to apply ourselves to our best work. 

The problem starts when content creators miss the point on why they are needing this recognition in the first place. 

If the point of creating content is to be seen, to get Likes, Claps, Followers, and go back to repeat the cycle, then you are missing an important ingredient to content marketing.

To make it worse most creators have no money, and endlessly daydream about a time when they can make cents off their content. Yet they still make a mess of their content marketing efforts.

Here’s a definition of Content Marketing that I pulled from Google:

What is Content Marketing?

content marketing

noun

  1. a type of marketing that involves the creation and sharing of online material (such as videos, blogs, and social media posts) that does not explicitly promote a brand but is intended to stimulate interest in its products or services.
    “social media is an integral part of content marketing”

Read that again, then pay attention to this tiny phrase –  intended to stimulate interest in its products or services.

The mistake you are making is focusing on the first part-  creation, and sharing of online material (such as videos, blogs, and social media posts) 

And not enough time on the second part-  intended to stimulate interest in its products or services.

Why are you wasting time online just creating content after content with no plan for making your content work for you?

The purpose of your art and creations should be to fulfill you and serve the world. Unfortunately, you may be headed straight to the frustration camp if you exhaust yourself by being a good content Samaritan, and never putting on your business cap.

If you are like me and you love the idea of growing an online audience with your content, so that you can potentially monetize with digital products, then this is for you.

Here are 4 things you can do immediately to go from someone who simply creates content to someone who creates content that makes money.

Know what you are selling

Truth is, most people create content. Only a handful know that their content should sell something. Don’t be so focused on feeding the machines of these social platforms, pumping content after content, and forgetting completely what you are trying to market and sell. 

Or worse, not have anything to sell at all.

And there goes a serious problem. 

Most content creators have nothing they are selling. 

They are simply just creating content, chasing the algorithms, getting high off the feedback, and running around this sick wheel. 

We are all selling something.

Whether you admit it or not, life as we know it is a business.

You have something to give the world. You are in business when you realize that your gifts to the world can be paid for. 

The purpose of your content should sync seamlessly with your purpose for being and should support that.

Whatever it is that you decide to sell or offer as a service, create your content in a way that supports that.

Don’t just have followers, have contacts

If you want to make money online long term you need Contacts.

I started a brand new Instagram page at the end of 2019 to grow a niche community of content creators. The very first thing I did was make a concrete plan for how to grow on Instagram quickly. But not only that, I also had a clear strategy to grow my email list through Instagram to generate contacts off the page. 

All I did was create a simple, yet powerful eBook as a lead magnet and offered this to my followers in exchange for their emails. I did this even before I ever got 1000 followers on Instagram.

Know this and know peace: You do not own your Followers, but you own your Contacts. 

This is where the dreaded email marketing comes in. 

Unfortunately, most content creators hear about the importance of email marketing almost daily, but it never seems to be important enough to take action. 

Every content creator I know wants 10,000 followers on Instagram or Twitter and wherever else they can get attention online. They strive for more and more followers and focus on this number that is logged in their social profiles.

The sad reality is you may have followers on a particular platform, but it is nothing but stats on that platform. 

That’s it. 

The number of followers you have is just a simple, almost useless statistic to show how much of your life and energy has been invested on the said platform. 

You don’t really have these followers if you don’t have them on your own private lists and community.

If you want your content to make you money long term, invest some time in learning how email marketing works. Stop putting this important step off. Start growing your email list.

Commit to Contacting your Contacts regularly

If you have a list that you do not keep in touch with, how can you say you have a list?

Just as you create content on your blog, on Youtube, or on Twitter, you have to create content for your email list. 

Most creators who start growing their email list give up the process before they get to 1000 followers. 

Unfortunately for most, growing an email list is not as fun as posting posts on Twitter and Instagram. You don’t get the overload of Dopamine that you’ll usually get from social media. If anything, email can sometimes crush your confidence. 

You send one email out and ten people unsubscribe. 

You feel defeated like you are not good enough. You take this feedback as a heavy blow to your ego. 

The feedback from emailing is not always as tasty as Likes and Comments on social media. 

Soon you stop contacting your list completely and a once-thriving email list goes cold-stone dead.

You have given up even before you start.

Make writing these emails to your list easier. Have a special type of newsletter for just your subscribers or even repurpose your blogs or Twitter threads as emails. 

James Clear has a newsletter he sends out every Thursday called 3-2-1, Tim Denning has Unfiltered, and Mark Manson has one called Mindfck Monday.

Perhaps adopting this kind of style might be your mojo. 

Remember, people who regularly read from you are more likely to buy from you when you do have something to sell. 

Shamelessly call people to Action. CTA is the lifeblood of your content efforts

On the internet, most people are a bunch of scrolling zombies. They are in a trance state, high AF on dopamine and completely lost. 

You have to constantly tell people what to do. 

Every piece of content should have a call-to-action. 

I like to think of content as an Ad. A marketing campaign in and of itself. Here are two questions I ask with every content piece:

  1. So what?
  2. Now what?

I may have written a great piece of content but so what? What does it do for the reader? How does it change their perspectives or make them think differently? 

Second, if I am lucky and I can hold people’s attention with my content, now what? What do I want them to do? Where do I lead them next?

When you know what you want people to do, tell them to do it. 

Every time. 

Do you want them to join your mailing list? Tell them.

Do you want them to read another post? Point them to it. 

Always know what you want people to do after they have consumed your content and tell them before they drown off back into scrolling zombie mode.

Have a clear plan to convert followers into buyers

Again and again, creators come to me at the last minute asking for help with making cents off the attention they have received online. 

A Tiktoker I last spoke with was so frustrated because she had suddenly gone viral on Tiktok and now has 500,000+ followers without a plan on how to convert these followers into buyers. 

To make it worse, she had skipped out on step one- knowing what to sell. 

Now, not knowing right off the bat what you’ll offer as products or services is okay in the beginning. Most people including myself have come to find out over time what we really like to offer. 

But this is not enough reason not to create anything at all. 

A simple strategy could be starting out with a lead generation funnel that has a Trip-wire offer in the backend, or a 5-7 day email sequence ready to go. 

Never make the mistake of setting up your lead generation funnel or opt-ins, without having pre-written emails all stuffed and waiting for your subscribers.

Did something stick out for you while reading this? 

Don’t be one of those who find new inspiration and do nothing with it. 

Commit yourself to implement these ideas in your own process and slowly haul yourself out of content hell to content marketing that actually works.

And when you are ready to monetize online, if selling digital products is your jam then here’s an extensive list of 32 Digital Products you can create that will make money this year. 

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