Why Every Small Business Owner Must Now Be a Content Provider

This post is Day 14 of 30 Ways In 30 Days To Redesign Your Life With Photography. This series seeks to provide you with practical steps to get you from wherever you are today, to exactly where you want to be – this year! If your goal has always been to take your photography to a whole new level, hang on and start enjoying a new lifestyle you’ve always dreamed of.

I’m a huge fan of learning from the biggest names in the business. From celebrities, to business owners, to politicians, I’ve always felt if they had what it takes to make it to the top, they must have a tidbit or two of insight on how to get there. Even if you only pick up one important fact from each person, together it can add up to incredible advice.

So you’ll find a lot of biographies on my nightstand. And I love watching interviews on television and online. But something amazing has happened over the past few years.

If you watch or read about anyone from the early baby boomer generation and older, they usually provide a comment along the lines of “if I had to start again today, I’d never be who I am today. The competition is just too intense these days.”

I’ve thought a lot about that, because I have read or heard that from more than one person. Is there really that much more competition? Or is it just that times have changed, and the way we do business has changed?

Its still possible to make it to the top, you just have to do it in a different way.

Let’s take a look at someone like Elvis Presley. When he first started out, he created a record, and him and his agent took it to every radio station around trying to get airtime. They networked on a personal basis, drove from place to place trying to connect, and eventually it all paid off.

Now let’s look at someone like Justin Bieber. Instead of cutting a record, he records a video and places it on YouTube. Then he networks in much the same manner. He makes connections online, and communicates with everyone from a preteen fan to a Hollywood agent.

In both cases, they are both master networkers, and understand you have to reach out to everyone from the individual who loves what you do, to the big-shot who can change your world. And everyone in between.

That hasn’t changed. And it never will.

But what has changed is the way you approach bringing the business in, and connecting up with those that can help you do it. And in many ways, it’s a lot easier.

Why Blogging Is The Way Of The Future

There are many reasons why blogging is here to stay.

With WordPress themes, you can quickly add plugins to do just about anything, you can design and create yourself with no coding or programming gexperience needed, and you control the content you put out for the world to see.

You can quickly penetrate the search engines – Google – which means you have access to prospects and clients that would be impossible to find anywhere else.

Blogs are the way of the future, and will provide an easy stepping stone to the next wave of technology – mobile.

Mobile technology is predicted to be the gateway to the Internet by as early as 2013. What that means is the majority of the population will no longer access the Internet via a desktop or laptop computer; they will access it via their mobile devices.

We’ll be using our mobile devices for everything from looking up a place for dinner, to buying airline tickets, to paying for groceries at our local market.

What this mean today? You can’t sit idly aside and wonder how to get your name out there. You have to do something about it. Which means you have to start providing content out there to the various sources that will get you noticed.

  • Creating blog posts
  • Tweeting on Twitter
  • Writing on Facebook
  • Commenting on other blogs and articles
  • Produce videos for YouTube
  • Write reviews on Yelp
  • Add a profile to Amazon
  • And so on.

The possibilities are endless, and are increasing every day.

Competition Is Controlled By Content

If someone has been creating content on a regular basis for a year, how will you compete against them? They’ve penetrated many different resources, and are findable in many ways.

Now think about it from a 5 year or 10 year perspective. The winners of the next generation will truly be the content providers.

When we created traditional sources of advertising, like business cards, postcards and brochures, we handed them out once and they were tossed into the trash. Each of those collateral pieces could help us once, maybe twice if they were passed on, and simply disappeared.

But with today’s content, you produce it once, and it helps you forever. Until a site is deleted, it will exist there and help you in some manner forever.

Let me give you an example.

I teach a class at a local community college on social networking – blogging, using Twitter and Facebook for business. My profile exists on that site and it provides a wealth of information about who I am and what my background is. And it links back to my TheSocialGhost.com site. A client of mine was searching for a social media expert here in this area, and my name popped up from the community college site. She didn’t attend my class, but she did end up on my site. And after a face to face meeting, she became a client. She also referred a friend who is starting up a business, who has also become a client. In all, I have generated well into the five figures with these two clients alone, and it all came from a simple profile on a social site.

Do It All Yourself

In today’s world, you do have to provide content on a regular basis. But if you hate writing or are deathly afraid to speak, you don’t have to shut down your doors. There are ways to get around it all.

While Facebook and Twitter are personal in nature, and with the short bursts of information, it is easy to handle yourself, there are sources that can help you do it. The same applies to blogging, creating YouTube videos, and even content for your emails and campaigns.

If you can’t do it yourself, hire someone who can.

Ultimately that’s been the key to success.

Elvis knew what he did best – sing. His persona made him who he was, and he relied on others to do what they did best.

The same applies to today’s stars. Justin Bieber is growing into a huge success thanks in part to his initial burst onto the scene, and now is being controlled by a whole host of people.

It comes down to you can’t always do it alone.

But you can start alone. You can start up a blog and make a commitment to adding content once per week. You can open up a Facebook account and learn how to connect with potential clients. You can create your very first YouTube. Sure you might delete it in a few months as you progressively get better. But that’s what’s so exciting about where we are today anyway.

You can put up something just to try it. It can be on the verge of homemade, and no one will care. You’re trying.

And that’s the most important step right now.

So just try it. The more you try now, the quicker you’ll grow.

What are you going to do today?

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clientexperience@todaysgrowthconsultant.com' About Virtual Photography

We're the co-founders of VirtualPhotographyStudio.com and have been writing on this blog since 2004. We started Virtual as a way to help photographers stretch beyond a part time income, and develop strategies to become a Five Figure Photographer or a Six Figure Photographer. Ultimately its all about lifestyle, and if your goal is to live as a photographer 24/7, we think you should have the knowledge and the tools to do so. Welcome!

  • http://www.portraitstodaystudios.com Kansas City Portrait Studio

    First, I really like the series you are doing.

    Second, I couldn’t agree more with this particular entry. Blogs and web sites are the same now. We have utilized our blogsite to gain quick access to front page rankings on search terms that really help us. Being a visual business we not only communicate our thoughts and ideas we show samples of the many different types of photography we do. Then people can decide for themselves if we are the portrait studio for them.

    But they don’t find us because of our pictures, usually. They find us because of our content. And if they like they hit the Schedule Now button. It’s really that simple.

    Chris Lengquist
    Portraits Today Studios
    Olathe, Kansas