Consistency is more than doing or saying the same thing again and again. It's also showing up where and when your potential customers expect to find you. If you create consistency in your messages, presence (both online and off), and schedule, you can form long-term relationships with your clients and customers that will generate incremental business over time.
Consistency should start with your branding. Your message should be present throughout and solidified within your website and any physical presence that you have. Your topics and individual articles can branch a bit further with the messages that you create and share through your email communication and your other customer outreach, but the underlying message should be the same across all channels and customer touchpoints.
How do you create consistent messages that are still unique and speak to your customers where they are? Plan ahead.
You can create a very simple content calendar for your social and other sharing and use a content planning worksheet to map out your website content (we have one here). Once you have your planning tools, choose several topics that you would like to cover within your area of expertise. Some of our clients choose to write or speak about one topic each month. Others choose to write or record several messages about the same topic over time, each in a way that speaks to different customers. Choose the method that works best for your brand.
Once you have a rough draft of your topics, plan out the frequency that you'd like to share your content on your website, with your email list, and on each social media account and Once you determine how often you want to share content and the types, you have a good list of the content that you need to create. For example, if you want to post 4x per week on Instagram, you'll need to create four branded images that you can share. If you also want to post on Facebook 5x per week, you might be able to use some of the same images that you've used on Instagram, but you also might want to create a blog post and a video to share. If you want to write an email to your list every week, that should probably be separate from your weekly blog post. Think about the amount of time that you're willing to dedicate to content creation and about how long it will take to create each piece of content as you finalize your calendar.
Next, consider the types of content that you'll share. Do you prefer to write? Would you rather record a video or a podcast episode? Be honest with yourself when you identify each of the methods you will use to create content since consistency is a focus. If you know that you will not create the four images per week that you need for Instagram, either cross that off your list or outsource that work. Do you want to share videos and articles written by others? Or do you want to share only your own content? This is a very brand-specific question that you'll need to answer based on the needs of your business. If do you share the content of others, that will reduce the amount of content that you need to create yourself, but you'll also direct traffic to others and give them the credibility as an expert. If you're in a highly collaborative industry or have a unique talent, sharing the content of others is a great idea. If you're in a highly competitive industry or selling a commodity, it might be bad for business.
If you do not enjoy creating any kind of content, but cannot afford to outsource that work, make content a priority for your best and most productive days of the week. Create short time blocks on your calendar for just 15 or 30 minutes of content creation each a few times throughout the day. If you can write or record ahead, you'll begin to build up content that you can use to either share with your audience more often or to fill the gaps when you want to take a break. Also, if this is the case for you, create a list of things you'd love to outsource one day and put content creation at the top. It's important for your business and someone who loves creating content will always do a better job than someone who loathes it.
So you've got a content calendar, a website planning tool, topics, a plan, and a schedule. Now go create some consistent content!