Having joined Passle 6 months ago, I thought now was an opportune moment to reflect on what I had gotten into and what (if anything) I had learnt over the past half a year.
The first thing that struck me was that by writing 1 piece of content per week (only 15 minutes of my time), I have learnt or discovered something new each and every week - that can be something about Artificial Intelligence, a new marketing trend, insights on Snapchat's IPO etc. Writing content means I actually expand my breadth and depth of knowledge each and every week as I try (& usually fail) to create something of interest.
The harsh reality is that 99.9% of people are not interested in what I have to say and that is perfectly ok. I know that my post is not going to go viral and that I am probably not next in line for a Pulitzer as it will only be seen by a few curious university friends, my colleagues and maybe my Mum. But when I write my Passle post, I am not doing it to be for the whole world - it is for the small number of people within my own business ecosystem. Those are the people that know me and who are actually interested in what I do/say. These are the people I want to influence or at least know I am there, staying forefront of mind.
Furthermore, when I'm heading off to a meeting and the person sat opposite Googles my name and searches for me on LinkedIn, there will be something tangible to show that I actually have some idea of what I am talking about - that I read, research and reflect upon what's going on, the current trends and how it will impact the market place in which I work. This allows me to start building a relationship with the people I encounter everyday long before I even meet them.
Secondly, we all spend so much time squirreling away at our everyday jobs that we lose sight of what is actually going on around us, with the exception of the major news stories. This key contextual knowledge is so vital for making better, more-informed decisions. So, by spending more time doing 'non-core' work, I become better at my core job.
So, for me. Writing content has three tangible benefits:
- I get to write about things which interest me - technology, marketing, social influencing etc. - and this actually is a topic of conversation when I go to meetings.
- The time I spend every week looking for something to Passle about means I am actually better at my job because, unwittingly, I read an extra 10-12 articles per week in my pursuit of something interesting and original. Broader market-based knowledge and awareness means that I know what is going on with my clients, their worlds and makes me better at my job.
- I have a digital presence and can influence those people within my ecosystem (only a very small pool of people, granted) and join the discussion.