Of the many reasons my clients tell me that they don’t write content, the two most common reasons are:
- They can’t imagine adding the task of writing to their daily to-do list much less be able to sustain the practice.
But even more elemental than that is:
- They don’t understand the value of stories as their primary content
As an exercise I do in my Intensives and Writing Salons, I ask my participants to write to a prompt. They mine their memory banks for situations, experiences, and consulting sessions in order to satisfy the prompt. I ask them to tell a story and what they write is nothing short of beautiful.
The bookkeeper talks about auditing her clients’ books and discovering all sorts of ways to save the client thousands of dollars and correct a handful of blatant bookkeeping mistakes that their current bookkeeper is woefully unaware about.
Or the photographer who described the process she takes to create major photographic projects for her nonprofit clients and how one was so well received that the nonprofit added a new layer: having the project travel the state where it was viewed by thousands of people to rave reviews and who would not have seen it otherwise.
And the healer who described her early childhood with an emotionally distant mother, one who loved her, but who was more interested in being seen by her well-to-do peers at important fundraising and social events. Her mother’s distant nature pushed this client to do work that demonstrates for her clients their worth in the world, their place, and that they are infinitely loved always.
These three brave women didn’t hesitate for a moment to share their narratives. Their stories. Their content.
I told them these were blog posts. They looked down at their writing, a little startled. I told them to post them on LinkedIn. “Really?” they said. They looked incredulous.
“These are examples of content,” I said. “Well done.”
I told them to write another when they got home. And another after that. And tell the stories in their elevator pitches at networking events (I heard the bookkeeper do this already and she was terrific and engaging.), and add them to their About Me pages as demonstrations of the value they provide their clients.
Stories—we tell them every day. Every single day. To ourselves (do you ever daydream?). To our friends (ever gossip?). To our clients (via blog posts, LinkedIn posts, tweets, Instagram posts, Medium.com articles, and newsletter articles).
What story are you telling today? And where are you telling it?