How we published 30 posts in 30 days
For those of you that followed along, you saw that we posted 30 tips in 30 days to our social media channels (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and my personal Twitter). We didn’t just post tips to our social media though, we published thirty blog posts to our website too. It wasn’t easy but here’s how we published 30 posts in 30 days.
First, what is the DIYin30 project?
DIYin30 is a campaign where we published 30 tips in 30 days all supported by 30 blog posts written each day. The objective? To create a path to success for anyone struggling to work their social media due to lack of knowledge and the skill sets related to content creation. Originally when I came up with this idea, I was just going to post a bunch of tips to social media. However as I really thought it through, I knew that a short tip on social media just wouldn’t cut it. What if I gave a tip but someone wanted to know more? I also realized that if I was going to put the effort in to create these tips we should put the effort in to give them a permanent home on the website where they could live and be re-purposed. So that is exactly what we did.
We started with a plan, and then we changed the plan, and changed it again.
My summer interns from Ball State University, Emmelyn Brandt and Jillian Wilschke, got to see firsthand what it’s like to be an agile business. You come up with an idea, you start to work on that idea, and then you realize you need to adjust that idea, and adjust it again until it feels right. As a small business, it’s easy to be agile. We were careful as we announced this project via Facebook Live, not to define it too much. That allowed us to stay agile. At first, we were going to use our project management tool, Asana, to plan out the project, but quickly realizing we needed something more flexible. I switched things up and we began putting tips on cards in Trello, one of my favorite apps to use for planning. We then started to group the tip ideas and put them in an order that made sense. We used color coded labels to tag the tips as they went through the planning, writing, and publishing stages. This made it easy for me, the project owner, to go in and see where we were and also know which tips were ready for me to grab and publish.
We used Google Drive and Google Docs to organize and draft our content.
Since this was an all hands on deck project, we knew we would need to be organized in order for things to run efficiently. Google Drive and Google Docs was an obvious choice. We made a folder for each tip where we saved blog post images, and social media graphics. Also inside each folder was a Google Doc where we drafted and edited the blog post and associated social media posts. Because we were organized we could simply communicate via Slack to say “Hey tip #15 is ready for review.” When it was time to publish the content to the website, everything was in it’s correct folder which made that part super simple.
I used Canva to create a consistent set of Facebook graphics. For the most part we just used the featured image for the Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram posts but there were a few that required some custom design in which I also used Canva. I scheduled about 80% of the content using Hootsuite and all of the Instagram posts were published using an app called Grum. Again, saving the content and graphics into the folder structure we designed made the publishing super simple and easy. No wasting time digging around in emails and folders for graphics.
We’re not “Writing Gods” but we got better and faster at writing.
In a perfect world, we would have written all of these blog posts weeks ahead of launching the campaign. That is just not my style sometimes and we were excited to get it going. So, we started about a week before posting tip #1. The first few posts went through a number renditions and edits. Both Emmelyn and Jillian got more used to understanding what I was looking for in the tips that were assigned to them and we all just got better and faster each day. It used to take me hours to create a blog post but some of these only took me 15 minutes. The more you write and the more often you write, the easier it gets. In 2013, Beth Dunn from Hubspot, gave an epic short presentation on getting better at writing. Her advice is based on one simple rule, write every single day. Here’s a video of that awesome presentation. Believe me, worth the watch.
We saw great results on social media.
It’s so easy to get bogged down working IN your business and not ON your business. I totally get that, even though I’m a professional marketer it happens to me too. Sometimes I get so focused on the marketing of my clients, I let my own process and workflow slack, which results in a lack luster marketing presence of my own. This summer I got back to publishing content and sharing helpful articles. This DIYin30 project made me the most active I’ve ever been publishing content on all channels every single day. We saw exceptional results in our organic reach and our new follower growth. Just on Facebook alone we saw a crazy boost in new page likes. See for yourself:
I went Live on Facebook again.
I was so thrilled after publishing the 30th tip I couldn’t help myself. I was just so proud of Emmelyn and Jillian for really stepping up and contributing to this project during their summer internship. I was proud of myself too. My very first intern, Katy Williams, and I came up with the idea for this campaign back in 2015 but I spent a year overthinking it. This summer, I decided, “we’re just gonna do it, and figure it out.” So I celebrated over a beer at one o’clock in the afternoon on a Wednesday with 238 people who joined me live on Facebook. I also went through tip #30 to give them some encouraging advice to stop overthinking social media and just do social media. That Facebook Live video has now seen well over 1200 views (and still climbing) and had 1200% higher organic reach than my typical posts. Plus, the comments from my watchers were awesome. If you missed the video of me drinking beer and talking marketing, you can watch it right here:
We’re not done yet.
We still believe that if you follow these tips one at a time and day by day, you’ll be a great social media marketer for your business. However, we know that’s not going to happen unless you have a tool to work through the process. So we’ve decided to publish an eBook workbook. This PDF will have all thirty tips and exercises that will ensure you put them to work. Our email subscribers will get early access so if you’re not a subscriber go ahead and do that.
I loved this project because I love helping people figure out how to communicate and reach their goals using social media and digital marketing. This is my passion and why I created this business. If you’re interested in working together, even if it’s just sitting down to create a content strategy, I would love an opportunity to help you. Just submit your info to get started.
Huge shout out to Derek McClain, our number one fan during our entire DIYin30 campaign. Derek is a digital marketer for Driver Solutions and a great peer in our social media marketing world. Thanks again D-Mac.