First 100

danielle geva toronto

Hey Danielle,

Could you help me out? I’m writing an article about starting blogging.

Let’s say you were to go back to when you first started blogging. How would you get your first 100 Facebook fans?

1. Write an article

2. Post a link to the article on your Facebook page

3. ???

What’s the next step? 

Go back to when I first started blogging? Well, that was around May of 2010. How would I get my first 100 Facebook fans? I’d have to create an account first.

After disagreeing with Zuck’s views on privacy, I deleted my personal account. But then in late 2010, I had to create another account for managing clients’ pages (which I also ended up deleting).

There are hundreds of reports, which are saved somewhere in the cloud, with details of my recommendations, methods, and results for growing an audience on social networks. Thing is, most of the specific advice is outdated.

Best practices are meant to be broken, and the people who push boundaries get the furthest.

You can google the latest tactics for inspiration, but successful marketers are the ones that devise their own experiments. If you’re starting a blog today, treat it like a business. Start with a marketing plan, and then use trial and error to figure out what work best for attracting your target audience. Oh and remember to avoid making the pinball machine mistake. Getting 100 fans might be a strategy you consider to increase readership, but it shouldn’t be your high level objective.

Celebrating Milestones

Why to Wake Up Anniversary Danielle Geva

Today is the one year anniversary of my first book, Why to Wake Up.

Welcome to a rare Thursday post. As much as possible, I try to post on Wednesdays. Why? I don’t even remember. It’s probably a combination of consistency and some outdated stats about readership and engagement. But today is a special day, so made up rules be damned.

Today marks the one year anniversary of Why to Wake Up. Exactly one year ago I published my first book, and this time I plan on properly celebrating the milestone.

When I first started consulting, I celebrated every achievement. Closing new clients was a big deal, as was completing projects successfully. Then as the years went by, the novelty wore off. I stopped acknowledging personal milestones, and client ones felt more like checking off boxes. When a client secured funding, I’d insist they celebrate. Then I’d ignore my own advice, and focus on the next steps.

I wish I took a moment to recognize major achievements, and even find new minor ones to be proud of.

The thing is that I’m only realizing this all now. Habits stick unless you actively work to change them, and that can only happen once you decide change is needed. Meaning the same behaviour continued even after I opened my new art shop. I missed out on truly celebrating completing my first new piece of artwork, making my first sale, and being a part of my first art show. I may have shared my appreciation on social media, but these awesome accomplishments didn’t register as deserving.

During a recent milestone birthday, it finally clicked how hard I’ve been on myself. I treated achievements as meeting the bare minimum expectations. Then I would obsess over how things could have gone better. Even now, I’m tempted to write about the millions of mistakes I’ve made. But today I’m not going to think about self-improvement, or plan the next project. Instead, I’m finally going to take the time to proudly reflect on how incredible it feels to have published my first book.

Visit the shop to order your own signed & numbered copy of Why to Wake Up.


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How to Accelerate Community Growth with a Podcast

How to Accelerate Community Growth with a Podcast

Listening to podcasts has quickly become everyone’s favourite new pastime.

Podcasts don’t feel like the result of careful planning by a marketing team. Instead, listeners are the silent participants in a conversation they can’t wait to share with their friends. An emotional connection forms as the host’s voice reaches listeners with unedited discussions and personal stories.

While others compete for eyeballs and are quickly forgotten, you can leverage a podcast to grow an engaged community that will generate positive returns for your business. Here’s how best-in-class marketers are incorporating podcasts into their content mix to accelerate the growth of their community.

Reach podcast fans through existing audio platforms

When deciding on a podcast hosting solution, you should find one that makes it easy to distribute your episodes to podcast listeners. Audio platforms like iTunes, SoundCloud, TuneIn, and Stitcher help podcast fans easily discover and listen to your podcast. These people might have never heard of your company, and now you can reach them every day on their commute.

Plan your distribution strategy before you launch your podcast, as you would for any other piece of content. Understanding how to increase your discoverability on each of these platforms will maximize the reach of each episode. Start by searching for related podcasts to see which ones rank well and learn from best practices.

What keywords are they using in their title and description? How many ratings and reviews do they have? How do they structure their show notes? These are some of the areas you can optimize for better reach.

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Beyond the sign up form: 10 places driving new subscribers to Mypodnotes

danielle geva podcast call to action union square

Finding the right call to action for growing my newsletter took a couple of weeks to refine, but I’ve finally settled on the copy. Here’s what I decided to go with:

“Get weekly notes from the podcasts everyone is talking about”

It starts with “Get” because verbs put people in the mood to act. In this case, it encourages them to type in their email and click the subscribe button. The idea of receiving value is also more enticing than a statement about the newsletter’s content.

Then there’s the frequency to set their expectations. People who don’t have time to listen to podcasts are probably too busy for a daily email, so I wanted to eliminate their concern of being bombarded with emails. This is just an assumption, so let me know if you’d prefer to receive a daily email, an email for every new Mypodnotes post, or an email for specific podcasts. (Update: due to popular demand, daily emails are now available. Enjoy!)

The last part of my call to action appeals to people’s fear of missing out, as the final push to motivate them to subscribe. I bet while you were reading “podcasts everyone is talking about”, it immediately triggered a flashback to a podcast recommendation from your friend or a story your coworker heard in an episode you need to hear.

Your call to action might not follow the same formula, and that’s okay. Find what works for your audience by asking friends or an expert copy writer. After you’ve crafted your own call to action, here’s where to get your first email signups.

1. Website Header (Smart Bar or Welcome Mat)

mypodnotes welcome mat

2. Navigation Bar

mypodnotes subscribe navigation bar

3. Call to Action Button (Button or Widget)

mypodnotes website button

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Think like an entrepreneur

danielle geva think like an entrepreneur

Life is a journey, but I’m impatient so I spend all lots of time reading career blogs trying to figure out what I should be doing next. Recently, I read that INTJs aren’t motivated by compensation which is why freelancing isn’t ideal. I gravitated to consulting because structure is boring to me, and clients in need of startup marketing always seem to find me. But in between clients it feels weird to spend any time thinking of how can I make money over actually helping as many companies grow.

Career advice starts by telling you to find the intersection between what you’re good at, what you like doing, and what people are willing to pay for. So I end up stuck wondering if I should hop on the learn to code train because I can’t seem to check off all three. The problem with this perspective is also that it’s all about the individual, especially talented ones and I already know I’m more of an agent type of person.

Then I look over at jobs, to see which companies actually need me and where can I make the most impact. There’s a huge demand for startup marketers, and even more applicants. Interviews aren’t my forte, and the process ends up being more about the resume and how many connections you have to the hiring manager.

I’m sure I’ll always spend time over-analyzing the meaning of life and my purpose, but I want to make sure that I keep moving forward. I want to spend the next 5 years working towards some crazy awesome idea and feel like I’ve achieved something great instead of being stuck in the same cycle. I’m starting to think the only way to do is this is by thinking like an entrepreneur.

Instead of obsessing over monetizing your skills, you uncover how to add value:

  1. What’s a problem that many people have?
  2. What’s the solution?
  3. How can I help those people solve their problem?

Once you have a solution, it becomes all about distribution. Which I love.

This how both mypodnotes.com and whistlenow.co were born. I’ll leave the details for another post, but I’m pretty excited to start working on these and learn from some new mistakes.

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