Recently, a good friend of mine talked about “giving herself permission” to make a hard business decision. As I offered my support, I thought of how often we business owners don’t give ourselves permission.
In an effort to stay ahead of our industries’ and customers’ wants and needs, we work hard to build a brand that will stand out from the rest.
In the best moments, we find the angle that makes us unique. We discover the customers who believe in why we do what we do. We make a mark that leaves an impression.
But in the worst moments, we get caught up in the latest trends. We think that we have to offer a certain service, make a certain product, do a certain thing. We believe we have to fit a certain mold.
And in those moments, we don’t give ourselves permission to be ourselves.
The worst of it all is that customers can tell.
This especially is true with content marketing. A writer’s voice, his or style, reveals much, and when a content writer doesn’t believe in what he or she is writing, it shows.
As Ashley Brooks explains in a recent post, good content marketing comes down to “being a person online.” When you’re connected to your writing, she explains, others will see: “Your enthusiasm and expertise will shine right through the screen, and your audience will be attracted by your passion.” However, if this isn’t the case, the reverse will happen. “You’ll sound dull and forced when you write your post,” Brooks says. “Your audience will be able to tell that your heart isn’t really in it.”
And if your heart isn’t really in it, what’s the point of writing it?
As I’ve developed my blog, I’ve come to rely on what I know. I’ve fallen back on the academic approach of simply adding to the conversation. Instead of trying to come up with a clever, “new” way for saying something that has already been written (or said), I acknowledge fellow writers in the field and respond with my own thoughts.
My posts may not be revolutionary. They may not offer something profound. Nothing I have to say will be truly groundbreaking.
But I’m okay with that.
Brooks mentions that her ultimate goal as a content writer is to help her clients create content that is “intentional,” not something that simply “checks all the boxes of a ‘good’ content marketing strategy.”
As one content writer to another, I say, “Preach.” And so that’s why, with my own business blog, I write about what I care about. I offer personal insights and experiences that I think may be helpful. I let others get a glimpse of me.
I’ve given myself permission to write content that works for me. I’d rather do that than be someone I’m not.