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Ep. #68 – Tips for repurposing your content with Beth Hackmann

August 2, 2022

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Planning on repurposing more of your content but don’t know where to start? Or you’re struggling with recycling and expanding your content’s reach?

In today’s episode, we’re chatting with Beth Hackmann, an experienced copywriter who helps creatives scale their businesses through powerful, personality-packed copywriting. According to Beth, creating and publishing content is not a “one and done” sort of thing. You’ve spent a lot of time and energy creating a piece of content, it only makes sense that you get as much mileage from it as you possibly can.

Tune in to hear Beth go through tips that are guaranteed to help you get the most out of your content repurposing efforts. She digs deeper into content repurposing, from idea management to choosing the right platform for your repurposed content and so much more!

Episode Outline:

  • Introduction  00:59
  • Getting to Know Beth Hackman 04:45
  • Beth’s Entrepreneurial Journey 05:48
  • Tips For Business Owners Struggling with Copy 08:15
  • How to Get Better Results at the Things You Struggle With 11:36  
  • The Benefits of Having a Consistent Brand Voice 13:40
  • Creative Ways to Repurpose Your Content 17:09
  • Idea Management: What It Is and How to Do It 24:07
  • Why You Need to Hang Out Where Your Ideal Client Spends Time Online 27:30
  • Choosing the Right Social Media Platforms For Your Business 33:06
  • Are You Having Fun in Your Business? 37:40
  • Lessons Learned From Beth’s Entrepreneurial Journey 41:51
  • Parting Thoughts 44:57

Links and Resources:

Bethscopycorner.com

Snag her free resources for photographer and creatives

Connect with Beth Via Instagram

Groove coworking app

Introduction 

Hello, and welcome to this little bonus episode of The She Calls Her Shots Podcast. I have just been so overwhelmed in a good way, with so much amazing content and guests and podcast episodes that I want to share with all of you. So I’m excited to announce these little bonus episodes that I’ll be putting out here and there to give just a little bit of extra added value just because I love getting to show up and share and have these conversations with you. So in today’s episode, we are talking with Beth Hackman who is the owner of Beth’s Copy Corner. It’s her own business that she started. And we’re diving into how you can best repurpose your content. Because as creatives, one of the conversations I find that I have with other business owners is that we feel like we’re constantly spinning our wheels, trying to create content that will resonate with our ideal audience. But one of the things that comes along with that is we start to feel really burnt out and overwhelmed because we feel like we’re on this copywriting hamster wheel all the time. We’re always trying to create content. We’re always feeling like we’re running out of things to share and things to say. So in this episode today, Beth is going to share some tips on how you can repurpose your content in a way that’s not only sustainable, but that also feels really fun. Her energy is great, she has such a lovely personality. If you hop over to her website, it’s just a fun mix of colors, it’s very beachy-themed. And it’s just one of those places where you just feel really warm and welcomed. So if you are interested and you love the conversation today, I highly recommend you go and check out her website. She’s got a ton of blogs and free resources to share with you as well. 

But to give you a little bit of insight, Beth helps creatives convert community into clients and help to scale their businesses through powerful personality-packed copywriting. So Beth does have some services, she offers full service, done-for-you email marketing, and website copywriting. She also does have some coaching sessions for those who aren’t ready to completely outsource. But I’m excited for today’s conversation because I really feel like you’ll leave this conversation and you’ll have some tactical things that you can do today to repurpose some of your favorite content, and some of the things that you feel have done really well that have resonated with your audience. So that way you can feel like you’re not constantly on that content hamster wheel. So without further ado, let’s go ahead and dive into the conversation with Beth. 

Krista Marie:

Hello, Beth. Welcome to the podcast.

Beth Hackmann:

Hi, I’m so glad to be here.

Krista Marie: 

Yeah, I’m so excited to be connected. I’m excited to talk about copy and content today. It’s one of my favorite topics because I struggle. Honestly because I struggled with it for so long, and then when I started to find my groove, I realized how much of a game changer it was. So I’m excited to talk with you about that today.

Beth Hackmann:

I’m excited to talk to you as well. Yeah, I think a lot of people struggle with it. So no shame in that at all. 

Krista Marie:

Yeah, everybody is creative in different ways. 

Beth Hackmann:

Like I can never be a graphic designer.

Krista Marie:

Oh, that’s so funny, though. Because I love your website. I was looking at it before we started recording. I was like, Oh my gosh, this is so fun. I mean, maybe you had someone help you with it. But I was like, all this branding and like all the design is so fun.

Beth Hackmann:

Well, thank you. Well, I hired someone for my brand identity, my logo and colors. But Squarespace is a really easy user platform.

Krista Marie:

Yeah, I’ve also been using Squarespace for a while. 

Beth Hackmann

Yes. So I like playing around with my own brand. I just hope I can do it for others.

Getting to Know Beth Hackmann 

Krista Marie:

Yeah, I totally get that. Oh, I love that. Well first things first, tell us a little bit about who you are, what you do, where you live, help us just get to know you a little bit. 

Beth Hackmann:

Yeah, of course. I’m Beth. Nice to meet you. I live in Saskatchewan, Canada. So I live in this little town called Moose Jaw, which is so Canadian. And I actually just moved here a few months ago, My husband’s job brought us up here. So he is working on his engineering job and I get to just follow him around since I work from home and own my own business. So I am a copywriter, I do lots of email marketing, I do websites, I do some coaching. And I just really work with creative service-based entrepreneurs, photographers, graphic designers, podcasters, influencers, community leaders, you name it. I work with them. So that’s what I do, and I absolutely love it. It’s super fun.

Beth’s Entrepreneurial Journey

Krista Marie:

When did you start your business?

Krista Marie:

Yeah, I started freelancing about January of 2020. I picked up a little side gig with somebody on contract. And then I graduated in May 2020, which was not exactly the ideal time to go into your career. So I had a lot of wasted weeks and lots of tears trying to get a full time corporate job. But while I was doing all of that, looking for the job, I was still freelancing on the side. And something inside of me just switched one day where I was like, what if I just stop putting all my effort into applying for jobs where I have to work for someone else. And I put my effort into continuing to get more clients. And so that naturally transformed into my business. And I started building my brand and making my business. I niched down to copywriting from marketing VA work that I was doing. And that’s how I started. So here I am, about two years later, and I love it.

Krista Marie:

That’s so fun. I know, it’s such a strange time. I feel like either people started businesses or even for me, as a photographer, I branched out in the things that I was doing. It was one of those moments where you’re like, alright, if I’m going to do something, now feels like the time to do it.

Beth Hackmann:

Right. We all had a collective midlife crisis

Tips For Business Owners Struggling with Copy

Krista Marie:

Absolutely. Oh, that’s so exciting. I’m excited to talk about this today. And I know before we hit record, we were talking a little bit, because I know that myself, as a creative, I consider myself a creative in a very visual sense. But I know that I struggle, and I know a lot of other photographers who struggle with the copy. I don’t know what it is. It’s the creative side of the brain, but it’s a whole different part. And I know that that can be a thing that blocks us because it’s one thing, as a photographer, or as a coach, we can talk about other people some of the time, but we really have a hard time talking about ourselves, we really have a hard time getting our services and the point across of what it is that we do. So for working with creatives, do you have any tips or suggestions that you can throw at us right off the bat of, if you struggle with writing copy, here’s some things that might help in the process.

Beth Hackmann:

Yeah, absolutely. I think it’s important to narrow down what exactly you’re struggling with. Are you confident in your brand voice? Sometimes people wonder what a brand voice is. Sometimes the issues are more in terms of punctuation and grammar and spelling and that kind of stuff. So once you define what exactly it is about copywriting that holds you up, and causes you that stress, then you go to the answer and find the solution. For a lot of my clients, I have discovered that they struggle a lot with their brand voice. When they write, it just feels flat. It doesn’t sound like them. They could have the loudest, most bubbly, sparkling, unique personality when they speak to people. But then once they try to get that into a blog post or an email or on their website about page, it just sounds like a robot. And that’s totally normal. That happens all the time and everyone struggles with it, even copywriters struggle with it, too. Something that has really, really helped me is I developed this brand voice clarity worksheet. And it basically walks you through different questions and different exercises to discover your brand voice. It’s just like when you work with a graphic designer to develop your logo, or to find the fonts that look good on your website, and all that stuff. It’s just like that, but it walks you through the specific words to use in your business. There’s a lot of phrases that we all naturally tend to gravitate towards. And it helps you identify that. So defining your brand voice, I think is really key. And there’s lots of resources out there to help you do that. And I think that really helps give you clarity, because it can also help you get ideas on content, it can help you be more confident in who you are, and who your brand is. Another tip I would have is know your ideal client and look at the words that they’re saying about you. A lot of times, I will have my clients go look at testimonials from their previous clients. And I will have them underline, highlight, circle, any words that they’re seeing repeated from their clients. So if a photographer has a lot of clients saying that they really loved how she was a fly on the wall, on their wedding. I’ve had a lot of photographers say that their clients appreciate that they are a fly on the wall, on their wedding day. And that she was good at staying out of the way. Not getting too involved, not imposing herself on the wedding day. She was just there to stand back and capture it. And so I helped my client see that is what your client likes about you. So use those words, the things that they said in your copy, because that’s what’s gonna speak to the people who you want to continue working with.

How to Get Better Results at the Things You Struggle With  

Krista Marie:

Yeah, that makes so much sense. And I know for me, when you mentioned to get really specific about the things that you struggle with, that was a big one for me, because I thought for a really long time that I was just bad at content creation, or like writing copy. But what I realized is I’m bad at writing it. When I started this podcast, it’s actually a good example. Because I never thought that I would have any information that would be valuable to share with someone. I just thought that I was bad at it until I realized oh, actually speaking about things comes really easily for me. But if I were to try and sit down and write this first as an entire blog post, I would struggle with that because my brain tries to piece everything together. So it’s really helpful for me to realize that I don’t actually struggle with the thing that I thought that I struggled with. Maybe there’s a way that I can tweak this to start with audio and then transcribe it or do it into a different format, then I can get copy. And I also have a friend who really struggles with grammar and saying things correctly. So she ended up buying Grammarly and she talks about how helpful it’s been. So, all these things where it’s like really narrowing down where everything might feel like a struggle, but like you said, there’s probably like one thing that feels harder than the rest of it.

Beth Hackmann:

Exactly. Yeah, Grammarly is my best friend. I have a whole degree in English and I still get caught up on Grammarly every day. So that’s a really great tool. And I’m also just really passionate in reminding people that copywriting and content creation in general can be a learned skill. I mean, there are a lot of things that come more naturally to me, than they might to somebody else. And vice versa. Canva, graphic design doesn’t come naturally to me. But there’s a lot of things that I’ve been able to pick up through courses or following certain people or having coaches help me with different aspects of it. So I think it’s definitely a learned skill that anyone can be taught. And it’s really, really important to recognize that definitely. 

The Benefits of Having a Consistent Brand Voice 13:40

Krista Marie 

And you mentioned brand voice. I always have a story that makes me laugh because for the longest time in my business, I worked full time while growing my business on the side for over nine years. And when I used to put my Work Out Of Office app for my business, I always took the route of what I used for my day job. Someone would email me for my photography business, if I was going to be away for the week, it was like, “Hi, thanks for your message. I will be out of the office.” I literally just took the same email. I don’t know why I never thought about it. There were just certain things you don’t really think about. And it wasn’t until I either messaged somebody or I saw someone’s thing that where they had this whole thing and I was like oh my gosh, that’s so fun. And then I looked at mine, I’m like, I don’t even sound like that in real life, why would I say that in my email, this makes no sense. It was this disconnect that I had that I just wasn’t putting two and two together where not everything really matched. In some situations, I sounded very overly professional and then in real life when you hear me talk on the podcast, you’re like, that didn’t sound like you at all. So I think it is so important to think about those little things of how you’re showing up and understand how formal you want to be, how formal does this need to sound and making sure everything matches.

Beth Hackmann:

That’s such a good point. Something to keep in mind when you’re talking about how I sound so friendly and not super formal in person. But then my email response used to be very professional. And that can cause a disconnect with our clients. So creating that consistency from the initial touch point all the way until you send off your final wedding gallery to them, I think that is so important. It really helps them feel valued as a consumer, and it helps them subconsciously, have trust in you because you are consistent. 

Krista Marie:

And I think going back to voice, I almost had to ask myself, would I say this if someone called me? And I’m like, No, you’re right. So I was like, Okay, how would I respond if someone called me on the phone or some other form? And I was like, Okay, this is more of what it would sound like. And so that was really helpful. Because words, sometimes for me, it looks good. But it doesn’t mean that it’s actually on brand.

Beth Hackmann:

Something that can help you in that specific sense. If you think you’re a better talker than writer, there is a tool in Google Docs, and I’m sure that Microsoft Word has it as well, where you can just voice to text, everything. So if I’m driving, and I have an idea, I’ll just open that up, and I’ll speak and it’ll just write everything down for me. And that is a really easy way to recognize, oh, wait, this is what I say when I’m speaking. That’s what I actually sound like. And so that can help you recognize the words and the way that you phrase sentences, that can help you with that as well. 

Creative Ways to Repurpose Your Content 

Krista Marie:

Yeah, I love that. I wanted to ask that first, because I know that that can be a really big pain point for a lot of creatives who want to feel confident in their copywriting. But the thing I was really excited to talk about today was repurposing. Almost along those same lines, because if I’m going to sit down and I’m going to write content, I want to make sure that I can get this into the most places possible, or at least maximize its value so that way, I’m not constantly feeling like it’s already a struggle, so I don’t want this to be the thing I spend 90% of my time doing in creating new content. So I’d love to chat through, and I know you have some tips for us on the best ways that we can repurpose our content.

Beth Hackmann:

Yeah, absolutely. You mentioned that you were doing your business on the side for nine years while you still had your full time job. That is such a common situation that people find themselves in. And I think, in any situation, it’s important to be efficient with our time, but especially for those of us that are starting our businesses or are in the beginning stages and are ready to grow. We have to be efficient with our time. And for all the parents out there or just generally busy people, it is so helpful to have ways to repurpose our content. 

So the first step that I have when you’re repurposing content is to think about your brand pillars. So what exactly is it that you want to talk about? What are your ideal clients wondering, what are some frequently asked questions that you get? For me, for example, that’s email marketing, website writing, the strategy sessions that I offer. And then I like to share about my personal life because I would get burnt out if I only ever talked about copywriting. My dog is really, really cute. I’m going to post about him. Let’s make Instagram less formal. 

And then my second step, which actually goes alongside the first step, is to come up with content ideas underneath each pillar. Sometimes this can go backwards. Sometimes I will come up with a huge list of content ideas, and then I’ll recognize which ones naturally grouped together. And then from there, I can create my content pillars. So I like to have a running list of ideas in my Google Documents, where I just have an idea and I can write it down and I can flush it out later, but at least I have it down out of my mind. 

The third step is to take that idea and then break that down as much as possible. So I will open up a blank document or a blank journal notebook page, and I will just brain dump everything about that topic. Even if it doesn’t sound good. I’m not worried about grammar right now. I’m not worried about it being in the correct order. I’m just worried about getting all of my knowledge about this topic on the page. So for example, I know that you are a photographer and a lot of your listeners are photographers. Something that they can think of is the topic of what to wear to an engagement session. I’ve written a lot of blog posts about this topic, I could write about it. And I’m not even a photographer, but I could write an entire novel about how to pick out an outfit, and how to choose coordinating colors with you and your partner, and what season it’s in, and all that stuff. So brain dump everything you know about that. And just get it all out on the page. 

From there, you can read over it and look at the different aspects of your topic. So you’re gonna take a little part of that, and zoom in as much as you can. So for what to wear to an engagement session, you could say, what to wear to a summer engagement session, and then do it for each of the seasons. And then what to wear for an indoor engagement session, what to wear for an engagement session at the park. And you can insert a park that is in your location, if you’re a location based photographer. And you just take the bits and pieces to really zoom in and talk about why you’re saying the things you’re saying, why you’re giving that advice. And then you can then go from there and use those pieces in different places, in different forms of content. So you can use it as a blog post to gain traction with new clients who are recently engaged and Googling that question. And then from there, your blog posts can lead into a freebie to get people to join your email list. And your blog posts maybe has 50% of the tips that you have. But then your freebie will give the most value. And now they’re on your email list. And then you can break down all of that into an email sequence that then sells your wedding packages. And then from there, you can use bits and pieces of the original content idea in your Instagram captions, or in your Tiktok, if you’re making Tiktok. You can make a podcast episode, a YouTube video. One example for this specific topic would be swiped to see some inspiration for your couples session for your engagement session. And it will just be like inspiration for your past work. And then another way that you can also use that would just say, here are my three tips for what to wear to an engagement session, but go to my blog to see more. So that way you kind of have people visiting your website, it’s really good for your website, for people to be visiting it. It tells Google that you are active and recognizable and trustworthy. And then from there, they’re being prompted to join your email list because they’re going to be seeing that call to action at the bottom of your blog posts. And then you can just send those tips out to people who are already on your email list or were there before the freebie was an option. You can write a podcast script about that, record an episode on that topic, then run that script through a transcription program, do a few minor edits, and then you have a blog post. If you want to do a podcast instead of a blog post first. You could take that and make it a YouTube video, you can really do anything with it. So you can use this process with any piece of content, starting at any point. If you don’t have a blog or an email list, you can still brain dump. If you don’t have a blog or an email list, you can still braindump about your content idea, break it down and then make it appropriate for that platform. Because you know, your post on Instagram will be different from your Tiktok. So you don’t have to use that exact step by step. But you can decide for yourself what types of content you want to prioritize and go from there.

Idea Management: What It Is and How to Do It [24:07]

Krista Marie:

Yeah, love that. And that was the way I succeeded with content. It was the way that you described it, where it’s step by step and like breaking it down, because you don’t really realize how much you know about certain things until you really start to break it down into those small pieces. The one question that I have for you on that is that originally, I thought that I struggled with creating content. And then I did it this way and realized I had a lot of content. And then I got overwhelmed because I had so much content. So do you have any tips for after brain dumping and after coming up with all of these ideas, a structure or workflow, or even like a spreadsheet, or like any sort of system or tool that you can use to make sure that you’re not overwhelming yourself with too much content? Do you have any tips for now that we have this brain dump of ideas, a system or a workflow that we could put it through to help us stay on track?

Beth Hackmann:

Yeah, I like to use Google Docs a lot. I have an entire folder that’s just dedicated to content ideas. But then from there, I have different sheets that have my captions written out. And then my different freebies or different blog posts written out. But the way that I decide when to post is by using a calendar and a planner. I’m a super visual person so I like to use the app, it’s called preview. There’s others like it, there’s Planly, there’s Later, you have to be careful because there are some hackers that will steal your Instagram password. But I’ve had really good luck with Preview. It seems super, super secure. I’ve been using it for probably three years now. And I like to organize all my posts in that. And then in there, I can also set reminders for when I want to post. I can visually see this is the photo or this is the reel that’s going to be posted this week. But even before all of that, I plan everything out in a calendar. So I will decide that I want to use the month of May to really hone in on my email marketing services. So for two weeks, I’ll talk about my done-for-you email marketing services. And then for the last two weeks, I’ll talk about my email marketing strategy sessions. So I can break it down, where I give myself space to focus on only one of my pillars at a time. And I think a lot of that is also just a mental thing. It is not possible to pump out content for every single social media platform perfectly. And I don’t think anyone’s expecting us to do that. I know I’m very much a perfectionist type of person, and that’s something I’ve had to work through. Because you learn more and more about the Instagram algorithm, and you learn more about YouTube and email marketing and podcasting. And there’s so many options, and that’s a lot of things to choose from. I want to do all of it. But my ideal client is not going to consume my content on every single platform. So you have to ask yourself, where’s my ideal client hanging out? Where will they see me the most?

Why You Need to Hang Out Where Your Ideal Client Spends Time Online

Krista Marie:

I love that, too, because to that point, the thing that I struggled with is I felt like I didn’t want to talk about… if I was on multiple platforms, I was nervous about talking about the same things. But then I realized that not everybody is looking at your content on the same platform. So like, even if you were like writing a blog post, and showing up on Instagram with a post and a reel, it doesn’t mean that everyone’s going to see all three of those things. So it’s okay if you’re talking about the same thing. Because I always felt like I constantly post, or every single time I show up, it needs to be something that’s like a different thought. But I found that I was getting so overwhelmed then with trying to keep things different all the time that it was just a very unsustainable way of staying active on my platforms.

Beth Hackmann

And you can also think about it like, what is your priority? Which platforms take one, two, or three, whatever you feel like you can handle this season, like you said, whatever is sustainable for you. And then just focus on those, show up on those. And then if you feel like you can handle the others at a different time, then do that. But it’s really all about where your ideal client is hanging out. And then also what’s the most fun to you? What really lights you up inside? You know, like you love podcasting. I’m assuming you love podcasting more than you love Twitter.

Krista Marie:

I don’t even think I have a Twitter account.

Beth Hackmann:

Exactly. That is now where we’re looking at when we’re trying to hire you. And you have fun doing podcasting, it lights you up inside, it’s where your ideal client can be found. And most importantly, this is what I like the best about podcasting is it lives forever. It does not die. An Instagram post only has a lifespan of about 48 to 72 hours in your audience’s feed. So I think it’s important when we’re asking ourselves, what do we want to prioritize (a) where’s our ideal client hanging out? (b) What’s the most fun for you? (c) How long will this content live? And then lastly, what’s the return on investment? Because you can spend three hours making a reel and writing the post for it. And reels do perform longer than carousels do on Instagram. A reel could be found two weeks later, maybe the sound will blow up in a couple of weeks. But is that how you’re getting your ideal client? And in a year, no one’s gonna be watching it, you know. But in a year, people could still be finding your blog post through Google or through Pinterest. So you have to count the time you’re spending and the money that you are spending into the different content that you’re creating. I really liked email marketing, because it has a super high return on investment rate. It’s $36 to every $1 you spend. So that’s why I live and breathe email marketing.

Krista Marie:

Yeah, I know. Email marketing can feel really daunting for someone who doesn’t have an audience. But I think this goes back to probably the reason why you don’t have an audience is because you haven’t created the content on platforms that are going to be more sustainable. Or the ways to get people on your platform, and then creating the longer forms of content that then you can break up and use on your social media and break up and use in other places. But I know because I did this for a long time, I got so into getting the Instagram captions and that’s exactly where I wanted to be. And that’s where I lived and spent a lot of my time. And if I would have just zoomed out and created blog posts, like one blog post could have housed like three or four social media posts in it. And I wish I would have just zoomed out a little bit and just made it a little bit easier for myself.

Beth Hackmann

I totally understand that. Because I think it was last year, maybe the year before, I spent so much of my energy on Instagram. I still love Instagram, I’m not hating on it. I just got really burnt out because I put all my eggs in one basket. And as I learned more about blogging, I realized that I should have put attention toward that. But I also have fun on Instagram, I’ve made lots of friends there. So there’s a give and a take, and it depends on what season you’re in. I also really think one of the most important things to do is just to listen to your gut when it comes to the whole thing. Because people will tell you, you have to post one reel a day, or three Tiktoks a day, and you have to do that consistently for a month, and then you will blow up, and then one of your posts will go viral. But the thing is that, if that’s not sustainable for you, then you need to release that pressure off of yourself and find what works for you in this season. And if that’s only posting once a week, if that’s running an email newsletter once a month, instead of once a week, then that’s great, that’s amazing, and your audience will still appreciate and love you for it. No one’s expecting you to show up 24/7 perfectly, no one’s ever expecting you to show up perfectly, period.

Choosing the Right Social Media Platforms For Your Business 33:06

Krista Marie:

I also think, for me anyway, like, no one’s going to notice if you’re showing up a little bit less. Like people get so many emails anyway, especially when it comes to email marketing, if you’re still showing up at all, people will notice that you’re still there, they’re not going to notice it. Unless you go from showing up every single day to once a month, I’m sure people might notice. But on a regular basis, if you’re showing up two to three times a month versus once a month, you’re still there and being visible, and like people still appreciate it. For me, the way that I look at Instagram really changed because again, that used to be where I created all my content for, and then I realized I got really burned out from it. And I was like, I want to use the platform differently. I want to use Instagram, I want to have fun, I want to post the things nonbusiness that people will be able to relate to. You were talking about your pillars, and it’s so important to figure out what are my business pillars, and what are my non-business pillars? What are the things that I’m gonna connect with people outside of it? And for me, I’m redoing my Instagram strategy right now. So my actual Instagram page will change because I’m approaching it in this new way. But in my stories, I connect with people over Harry Potter or some nice indoor cycling that I do or my dogs or random stuff. So it’s getting really clear about how you want to use the platform, because I got really tired of only talking about business stuff and feel like I was constantly talking about that. I was like, Oh, this doesn’t feel like how I want to use the platform. But I’m fine with that being my blog. I want my blog to be a place where people go and I’m not going to talk about my dogs and Harry Potter. I’m not going to do those kinds of blog posts, but I will do that on my Instagram. So it was just re-shifting that energy. And it made such a big difference because now it’s more fun to be able to show up on the right platforms.

Beth Hackmann

Yeah, that’s so so good. And the thing is that it’s all about finding what’s appropriate for each platform, too. You can make a blog post about your dog and Harry Potter and what you did this weekend and all of your thoughts and feelings. You can totally do that. But that’s not going to draw in brand photography clients necessarily,

Krista Marie:

No one’s gonna be Googling that necessarily, probably on my page. If they stumble across and while they’re there, great, but probably not. 

Beth Hackmann:

And that could totally serve its purpose to help somebody who’s browsing your website connect with you. And that’s great. But it’s more appropriate for a blog post to be about educational things that people are actively searching Google for. And then Instagram stories, people expect to see a picture of your dog, or a picture of you at the lake this weekend, and that kind of stuff. And they like it too. They want to connect with you personally, people will connect with your face, they will connect with your common interests, and they will want to work with you because of that, as well.

Krista Marie:

Yeah, my Instagram strategy, especially as a photographer, I used to get so stressed about the grid, and what does it look like. I used to get overly concerned about all these things, and the strategy that I’m changing into actively as of right now, I just want to have more fun with it. And it’s so interesting, too, because I feel like in the past, posts did get a lot of activity, and I did get a lot of likes, and I did get a lot of engagement. And now I’m noticing that I could put all of this like heart and effort into a post and then like nobody sees it. And so it was an easy no brainer of, you know what, now I’m gonna change this energy into other things. So now it’s almost giving me permission. Now that they’ve changed the way that posts are seen and stuff. I’m like, I’m just gonna have fun with this because if I get five likes on a post, cool. At the end of the day, someone’s going to just come to my page and scroll and see the vibe. And as long as the vibe matches what I want them to know about me, the pressure is off on having everything be so perfect. I’m now allowing myself to just have more fun on it and not stress about it quite as much. So as stressful as it is that they’re constantly changing stuff. I’m like, you know what, I almost prefer it that way. Because now I can put my energy into the other things that I actually think will be a little bit more long term beneficial.

Are You Having Fun in Your Business? 37:40

Beth Hackmann:

That’s so important. I’m a type seven on the Enneagram. I don’t know if you know what that is but it’s just based on…

Krista Marie:

I definitely do. I’m a nine. 

Beth Hackmann:

Amazing. Well, I love to have fun. If it’s not fun, chances are, I won’t keep doing it. 

Krista Marie:

Yeah, it has to be fun for you. If your business isn’t fun, I always talk about how we have to be in this for the long run. And if your business gets to the point where it’s not fun, you’re gonna throw in the towel, you’re not gonna do it anymore. 

Beth Hackmann:

I’m not going through all the pressure and struggles of working for myself, just to boss myself around. I got into business on my own to not have a boss and to be able to work on my own terms, and to have the freedom to do life the way I want to. So I’m not going to pressure myself into doing it the way that I don’t want to. And I think that’s important.

Krista Marie:

It might work for somebody else, and that’s totally cool. But if it’s not fun for you, it’s not going to be sustainable.

Beth Hackmann:

The things that are meant to be are going to happen and people will tell you that you have to do things a certain way. I think there’s a really big culture of “bro marketing” where you have to do strategy with everything. And you have to harp on people’s pain points, and you have to post X amount of times a day, but only like this and use your hashtag like this. Okay, but what happened to just being in a community and guiding people along and not taking advantage of them because they’re not as good at something as you are.

Krista Marie:

Also, I actually did a podcast episode on over strategizing because I struggled with that for a while. I tried to get so prescriptive in making sure the posts were the right kind of format and I said the right things and all this stuff, and everything felt so stale. I felt so burned out. I didn’t want to share for fun anymore, I was way over strategizing. And then I let myself literally stop and only share fun stuff, only share me working on behind the scenes stuff and I started booking more clients, I started getting more work. And that was so interesting because, I don’t want to call it a balance, but you really do have to be very mindful of all this because I think there’s a time and a space to create, like what you were saying, create your pillars, break down the stuff you want to talk about, have an idea of what you want to talk about. But don’t get so prescriptive of, I’m going to share this. And then I’m gonna share this, and this is how I’m gonna talk about it. As soon as you start to do that, especially on a platform like Instagram, where people are sharing their vacations, and all this stuff, it almost just doesn’t quite match. And there are some people who do really well with that. And they thrive with that boom, boom, boom, and all this this kind of stuff. But I realized, for me, it was not going to work. I just can’t use the platform like this. 

Beth Hackmann: 40:54

Yeah, that totally makes sense. I like how you’re using the word prescriptive, because I feel like that’s not addressing the root issue. That’s just a bandaid on top of it. Whereas the root issue is, is this actually working? Or am I doing it just because it worked for somebody else, and they’re, quote, unquote, an expert. And they told me I need to do this if I want to succeed. I think it’s important to define success for yourself, and if that looks like posting three Tiktoks a day, then kudos to you, that’s great. You’re gonna blow up on TikTok way before I ever do. But that’s not what success looks like to me. For me, it looks like giving myself the space to enjoy posting and to have ideas, like the running list of ideas that I have. And then to put my energy toward that once or twice a week, but not every single day.

Lessons Learned From Beth’s Entrepreneurial Journey

Krista Marie:

Yeah. So true. I love that. Well, as you’ve been growing your business, as you’ve been working through everything, there’s growing pains all the time, no matter where we are in our seasons. Is there anything that in the last couple of years that you’ve learned that you would love for someone who’s just starting off? Or is there anything that you’ve overcome recently that you just feel compelled to share with someone if they’re going through some struggles or pain points?

Beth Hackmann:

Yeah, absolutely. I think that something we all deal with every now and then is loneliness, and lack of community. Because we sit at our computer all day, and we work by ourselves. And we might have kids, we might have other friends who also run their own businesses. But at the end of the day, sometimes it can feel a little bit lonely. And then for me, that has often led to not being able to focus and to having really poor time management skills. So the number one thing that’s completely transformed my business and the way that I work with my clients and the way that I work on my own business, because we have to have time to decide for ourselves and for marketing ourselves, and for building out our own services and whatnot. The thing that’s helped me the most is this app, it’s called Groove. And it’s a virtual coworking app. And basically, you hop into a Groove with up to three other people. And you all have five minutes to talk about your goals for the time period, then you have 50 minutes to work. And then at the end of that you have five minutes to regroup, talk about the goals that you met, and all that stuff. So there’s a lot more to it. It’s very nuanced. It’s more than everything I just said. But it’s this app, and I have been doing it for, I don’t know, maybe three months. And it’s just really helped me with my time management. And yeah, it’s also given me a space to be social. Even though it’s still on a screen. It’s still nice to connect with other people who are also, you know, working from home or whatnot. It’s like you’re doing something together, you know?

Beth Hackmann:

Yeah, sometimes I feel like that time box when you’re like, Okay, I’m gonna sit down. I’m gonna do this for 15 minutes, you actually can get a lot done when you actually give yourself that time box.

Beth Hackmann

So many times I sit down at the end of the day, I’m like, what did I even get done today? And it’s like, I started this task. I started this task, I did half of this thing. I did most of this, but I didn’t actually finish anything. And so I feel like once I have that allotted time and space to take care of something. It’s been really, really helpful. I know I can get a blog post done in two Grooves. I know I can do research for a website in one Groove. You know what I mean? That’s been something that’s been really helpful for my business. It’s a really great tool.

Parting Thoughts 

Krista Marie:

I love that. I’ve never heard of it. I’m going to look at it, and I’ll link it in the show notes too for anyone who’s interested. I love that. Well, Beth, this has been so good. And let us know where can we connect with you? Where can we find you? I know you mentioned you might even have a resource to be able to share. So just let us know all that.

Beth Hackmann 

Absolutely. Well, I love to hang out on Instagram. I’m in the stories a lot. And then I will post every now and then. My Instagram is Betho_G. And then I also show up a lot on my email list and my blog, my website to see both of those is Beth’scopycorner.com. And I also have a free resource for any photographers out there called Email Marketing for wedding and elopement photographers. So that’s a free resource I have coming up, and it’ll be on my website underneath the Resources tab, and I have my brand voice clarity worksheet there as well, for anyone who really liked a conversation earlier about brand voice.

Krista Marie: 

Amazing. Great. And I’ll link to all of those things. So if you want to get the wedding and elopement guide, you can grab that link and then you can grab the General Resources link too. Thank you so much, Beth. This is so great. Thank you for being on the show today.

Beth Hackmann:

It was so much fun to talk with you Krista. Thanks so much for having me on.

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I'm Krista! Wedding and Personal Brand Photographer based in Northern California. I’ve been photographing weddings & women business owners since 2010, and I fall more in love with my job everyday. When we work together, I help create a stream-lined, easy and smooth process so you feel FULLY prepped, ready, and EXCITED to take your photos!

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