When it comes to being creative and putting stuff out there, often we end up focusing on the wrong thing.
We ignore the audience we already have and put our efforts into reaching new people with the hope of growing and growing.
However, what often ends up happening is we lose our current audience in the process because they no longer feel like we’re creating for them.
Instead, you’re much better off putting your efforts into creating for the people that are already here. Those people are already interested and given time will care enough to spread the word, if what you’re putting out is good enough.
When it comes to being someone who is creative, puts stuff out there and has ideas to share there is one piece of advice I’ve heard from two people that will never grow old.
It is something worth remembering as things change and develop over time.
The advice is to not become attached to the platforms where you share your work but to use them to your advantage in a way that works for you. Instead your focus should be on the work, the idea or the message.
When you do this, it doesn’t matter where you share your work. It could be on IGTV, pictures and captions on your Instagram feed, Insta stories, IG reels, a podcast, YouTube videos, blog posts, a newsletter, Facebook, or even snapchat.
And when a platform changes or becomes obsolete you can seamlessly shift to something else.
There will always be things that you need to do but don’t necessarily enjoy.
Often it’s these kinds of things that are good in the long run but in the moment, in the short run you’d rather not bother.
If it’s in a work environment you’ll most likely get it done because you have have to. However, when it comes to your own personal work or projects you might not have a monthly wage to motivate you to get things done.
And so you have to remind yourself of the benefits it will bring in the future.
But also remind yourself that if you don’t do it you’re more than likely to regret it later on when you’re unable to reap the rewards.
Coming up with an idea of who your customer or target audience is incredibly helpful. For example, if you are trying to attract a younger age group you would use different methods than those you would choose to attract an older age group.
That could mean promoting your work on a Tik Tok account instead of setting up a Facebook page.
But you can even take things further and really carve out what sort of person would be interested in your work.
Perhaps it is someone that spends a lot of time reading, isn’t on so social media much. Maybe they are introverted or they prefer meeting people in person rather than online. Keep going with that until, you eventually begin to cultivate this conceptual idea of a person and then you’re able to look at different ways of reaching that person.
Ask yourself, ‘Would this person want updates on twitter, insta stories or by email?’
Once you can answer these questions, it can provide a useful base for figuring out the best place to share your work and promote your stuff.
If someone took a look at your instagram account, what would it show?
Would it help you gain employment in the area you want to work in or is it something you have just for fun?
I think that for many people, especially now with social media which is essentially a CV of sorts, you have the opportunity to show a much wider audience of people what you do. You could be a photographer, writer, creative director, textile artist, chef, singer, life coach or a poet.
You won’t necessarily get hired from Instagram but it can be used to showcase your work, like a portfolio.
They’re out there maybe you just haven’t found them yet.
When putting your work out there it is important to put it in the line of the people you’re creating for. If they right people never see it, how will they find it?
These days it can be easy to fall into thinking that simply having an Instagram account is enough. Of course we can’t deny that Instagram is an incredible useful platform but there are plenty of other things worth doing to find and grow your audience.
I think there are 2 main ways: creating content on more platforms and making yourself visible.
It’s about giving people the opportunity to find you. This is something I’m working on and so this post is as much for myself as it is for you.
Here are some ideas to help increase your visibility and find your audience:
- Write articles for other sites
- Create YouTube videos
- Start a podcast
- Attend events relevant to your work
- Speak at events relevant to your work
- Create sharable content
- Talk about what you do
- Host an online event
- Start a mailing list
I’ve been daily blogging on this site for 22 months now, almost 2 years.
It’s something that I enjoy doing and I love that I’ve created a space to share my thoughts on various aspects of life and my experiences.
However, I’ve recently started thinking about what changes I could make to this site and how I can make it better.
One of the first things that came to mind was posting less. In the past couple of weeks, I’ve found myself not enjoying posting so often. I began thinking about how much I could improve the site if I was no longer sharing a new piece every day and I relaised that maybe it’s time for me to quit daily blogging.
Perhaps you’re in a similar position to me or maybe you are just curious. Either way, here are a few reasons to quit daily blogging:
- You’re no longer enjoying it
- Your audience is overwhelmed
- The quality of your content is decreasing
- You’re posting out of habit rather than because you have something worth sharing
- You want more time to work on other projects
- You’re not happy with your content
- Posting daily no longer feels beneficial
The beauty of a blog is that you can create your own schedule. You might quit posting daily and realise that all you needed was a break and so maybe after a month you’ll go back to it. However, you might also realise that you’re much happier posting less.
When it comes to putting your work out there it’s really important to consider your audience.
I think these days because Instagram is such a popular social media platform, we automatically think that our audience will be on there. We think it’s the only way to find people that are interested in our work.
I think that the issue we sometimes end up having is that we can’t think of any other possible way that we can put our work out or connect with new people. It’s Instagram or nothing.
However, I think it’s valuable to seek out other ways because sometimes the truth is your audience might not be on Instagram.
One of the things that I think is severely underestimated is the need for discipline in creative pursuits.
We’re bombarded with ideas and imagery of the wild artist. The creative that is awoken from slumber with their great idea. The writers block or creative block that results in nothing being produced for days, weeks or months. Then suddenly they’re almost possessed by the desire to create.
I think we separate the idea of being disciplined because it seems so in contrast to the idea of creativity.
But furthermore because we often look at creativity as a natural thing that just comes to you instead if being something you have to work at.
Time, dedication and discipline of a creative pursuit isn’t always appealing but it’s necessary.
When viewing a piece of work it’s important to understand the vision.
What is the intention behind the work?
It’s like when their is a piece of art and people don’t get. They will criticise it and complain about it or say that they don’t understand.
Those thoughts come from the perpective of the viewer.
But if you then think about it from the artists perspective or even read/listen to the artist talk about their work, you might start to understand the vision a little more.
Sometimes it’s easy for a message to get lost in translation, especially when you’re viewing it through the lenses of your own biases, interests and experiences.