Recently a colleague’s insightful social media post, and the comments that followed, reminded me how I’ve come to think about consistency differently. As someone who has zero interest in hustling to grow my solo business, the old adage, “slow and steady wins the race” seemed to better represent my approach.
Or so I thought.
I was already on board for “slow”. For a while now though, I’ve been quietly questioning the “steady”.
In terms of my personal energy and how I want to use my time, “steady” – broadly understood in this context as “consistent”, “regular”, “continuous”, “following a set schedule” – has been problematic.
What’s consistency in marketing? Who gets to decide? And how does a sensitive solopreneur keep up without burning out?
I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling bombarded with the message that consistency is critical to growing our business. Specifically, this is discussed in terms of marketing.
How many times and how often to post on social media. Send a newsletter. Publish a new blog post. Send emails to support a funnel.
This is paired with the notion that posting and sharing consistently leads people to trust that we’re reliable. Legit.
We’ll package this up as “content creation” and “visibility” EFFORTS.
Really, it’s a whole lot of SHOULDs placed on us as online business owners. And since we want to do the best thing for our business, we genuinely try to follow these standard “rules of the game”.
Let’s face it, these rules are everywhere in how-to messaging for online business. Even from people whose opinions I respect. Which complicates things even more.
It creates SO much pressure for the solo business owner, particularly if we experience sensitivities. Trying to keep up with this version of what consistency in marketing means can result in overwhelm, feelings of failure, negative feelings about your business, and eventual burnout for too many of us.
What if instead of trying to keep up, we made our own rules for what consistency means to us?
Our own rules, based on what feels sustainable for our energy levels, and reflecting our own values, strengths, preferences, and goals.
Even if that goes against what our own coach or mentor (or anyone else) suggests.
For example, when it comes to consistency, I can understand the importance of staying “on brand”. That type of consistency works for me. It feels more authentic and intentional. It’s less confusing to my ideal audience. And it saves me energy because I’m not reinventing the wheel every time I show up.
But trying to follow some rule about a certain number of times and ways to show up? X number of posts on social media on a certain schedule? Or a weekly newsletter? A weekly blog post? A monthly webinar? And on and on.
Who says that’s what’s required to succeed?
If your intention is to send a newsletter every week, which in reality becomes twice a month, and then you can only muster the energy to create quality content for one, is that going to break your business? Do you really NEED to publish a new blog post every week? Or do a daily Live?
C’mon! Let’s allow ourselves to take a breath and be human for a moment. We didn’t create a business to become trapped by someone else’s rules.
There’s SO much pressure to “stay consistent” but I think it’s more important as a sensitive solopreneur to move to our own natural rhythm and within our window of tolerance. For me, that is NOT consistent in the standard way we’ve learned to think of it.
You’re allowed to create healthy boundaries for your business
My energy ebbs and flows. So I try to keep my blinders on to what is generally recommended and expected. I need to hear and follow my own voice if I want to “keep up” over the long term.
To decide my own sustainable pace and give myself permission to become quite minimal in my content creation and “visibility efforts” as a result. Having a client attraction process in mind, but freeing myself from obligation to a rigid schedule. And being clear about what “enough” is for me.
I also notice others who are questioning. They are definitely out there. If you find yourself nodding as you read along, you are not alone.
So go ahead and release the pressure of all those unrealistic expectations.
It’s your business. You can trust yourself and create your own version of consistency in your marketing.
You get to determine what works best for you in terms of how you communicate about your services and go about building trust with your ideal audience.
When you give yourself some quiet space to reflect on what’s working (and not) in terms of marketing that feels sustainable to you…
What do YOU believe should be consistent and steady about what you do?
What would fall under a YES column that you want to continue?
What would move over to the QUESTIONABLE side that you want to reconsider?
Perhaps it’s time to experiment with something a little bit different based on what you know to be true for yourself.
Consistency. Visibility. Reliability.
Let’s stop allowing other people to decide what this looks like for us. Instead, find your own rhythm and flow.
Onward Sensitive ones. Slow…and conscious/intentional/or fill in your word (instead of steady)…wins the race!
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