A couple months ago, I went to a blogging conference in Dallas, Texas called Create & Cultivate. It was a blast—the setup was pretty, everyone was so nice, and panelists gave sound advice throughout the conference. I’d heard most of the advice before, but I stayed after a certain panel to speak to one of the experts, and she gave me advice that I’d heard for the first time.
Fast forward to 90 days later. I was paid the most I've ever been paid for an Instagram post because of what I learned from that expert. Her advice? Shoot content specifically for Instagram, if you want to monetize it.
Not rocket science. Just good ass advice.
Nowadays, everyone wants to be paid by brands. It's the new groove as a content creator. Whether it's social media content or blog posts—and don't forget about video—brands are now setting aside budgets for “influencer marketing” or partnerships with bloggers and vloggers.
So, how do you stand out and get paid by brands?
Create above average content for all of your social media platforms so you can cause your followers to react. This is also known as...
“Influencer” is the buzzword of the moment, but to influence means to have an effect on the behavior of someone or something. You can’t deem yourself an influencer. Only your audience has the power to do that.
I’m able to be paid more than someone who has 4x more Instagram followers than me because I’m consistent on every social media channel. My consistency determines my influence. That’s what makes me valuable.
There are two reasons why brands need your influence:
INTEL & IMPRESSIONS.
Let’s get into what these terms really mean.Intel is the knowledge you have about your specific audience. Intel includes:
Niches are where the riches are. You don’t need millions of followers, but you do need a highly engaged and specific audience. You can’t be vague. Are you an entrepreneurial beauty blogger? Are you into graphic design entrepreneurship? Be really specific.
I’m very intentional about what I talk about. I usually only talk about blogging with brands, influence, or consistency. When I’m not talking about those things, I talk about makeup or style. Even though I talk about a variety of things, I talk about these things on a regular basis on various channels.
People’s behaviors are always changing. Think about the last time someone wanted to land an interview on the radio. Simply put, no one is trying to be on the radio anymore. This is the same thing that’s going to happen to television. People don’t want to start radio shows—they want to start podcasts.
When’s the last time you streamed mainstream media in real time? I caught up on the last four episodes of Scandal two nights ago on my XFINITY app. If I can watch an entire series in three hours because I have the time and I don’t have to watch commercials, why wouldn’t I do that? When it comes to knowing people’s behaviors, you have to stay ahead of the curve.
C L I C K T O T W E E T.
You can’t stay on trend. You have to stay ahead of it. Research how mainstream media changed over the years, and pay attention to how it’s changing now. It’s very important that you study the past trends of things like radio and mainstream TV. At one time, radio was poppin’. Then TV came and people didn’t think TV was going to be important. The people who disregarded TV missed out. The same thing is happening with the transition from TV to the Internet.
People who take chances on the next big thing usually end up winning, especially when they’ve done their research. Needless to say, ten years from now, the Internet’s going to be a different game, so study trends and do your research.
Impressions show the impact of your influence. Impressions include:
You have to be really interactive with your audience. There’s too much content on the Internet for you to be on just one social media platform. So if you’re just on Twitter because Instagram isn’t your thing, you need to figure out how to make Instagram your thing.
How many social media channels are you on, and can you maintain your influence on all of these channels? People drop the ball on social media because they try to tell the same story on all of their channels. That’s like being the same person at work, home, and church. It doesn’t work.
C L I C K T O T W E E T.
We all know the stories of Beyonce and Oprah—how they went from modest beginnings to worldwide stars—and that’s why we stan for them. You’ve got to figure out how to tell your story.
Instead of telling brands how many followers you have, you need to tell them how many people comment on your posts and make purchases. When we watch TV, the purpose of a commercial is to convert a viewer into a customer. There’s a purpose for everything I post on social media. The purpose might not be for you to buy something from me—it might just be for you to read my blog. The point, however, is conversion.
There are people who have many more followers than me, but they only have ⅓ of the power that I have. You need to prove your power, not your numbers. You can have 20,000 people who rock with you on the Internet, and you can still make millions of dollars because you’re able to get those 20,000 people to react and buy products. Conversion is how you prove your power, and it also allows you to monetize your business successfully.
C L I C K T O T W E E T.
You must be willing to do what it takes to become a content creator and influencer. I post consistently on every major social network because when it’s easy to find me, it’s easy to pay me.
You need to create content on a daily basis. Once or twice a week isn’t enough. Everyone has figured out that blogging is poppin’ and social media is powerful. The only way you’re going to stand out, even if you’re mediocre, is by being consistent.
People don’t have the work ethic to be consistent. Being consistent sounds good to everyone, but very few people are actually going to read this post and do what I’ve suggested. I was up at 4:00 AM this morning. Why? Because I believe in Mattieologie, and I believe I’ll be the biggest star on the Internet in 2020. I can say that without ego because I’m planting the seeds that will allow me to benefit from the fruits of my labor.
People can outnumber me or outsmart me, but very few people will outwork me.
What you need to remember:
You don’t need a huge following if you can master being visible and consistent on multiple social channels.
The only way you can keep up with how quickly technology changes is to do your research, stay ahead of trends, and take a chance on the next big thing.
Every social media channel has a different purpose, so you must use multiple channels to stand out and effectively tell your story.
Conversion is the number one way to prove your power to brands. Your number of followers doesn’t mean much if you can’t get your followers to react to your content.