Can Content Marketing Really Help You Build A Personal Brand? With Lindsay Livingston
Tell us about yourself, Lindsay.I'm a Registered Dietitian from Columbus, OH. I work in nutrition communications and am the author behind the healthy living blog, The Lean Green Bean. My husband and I are expecting our first child in October and in my free time I enjoy doing Crossfit and spending time outdoors with our two dogs.
When did you start content marketing?I've been blogging for 4 years. I started because I was looking for a place to store all the recipes I was making for dinner. I started on Blogger and after about 6 months, I made the switch to Wordpress. After about a year, I really started focusing on increasing my readership and growing the blog.
Do you have a personal blog outside of your work blog?I'm lucky that my personal blog has grown enough that it's now part of my job as a self-employed RD!
What tools and platforms do you use to help you with your content marketing and social media?I'm self-hosted. Dreamhost is my host and I blog with Wordpress. I use CoSchedule as my editorial calendar and also use it to schedule my blog posts and social media posts. I use Buffer and Hootsuite to schedule the tweets I create to share blog posts of others, news articles, etc. I use Pinterest to pin and promote my own content as well as building boards to gather recipes, tips/tricks etc for my followers to use. I have a blog Facebook page where I share my blog posts and Instagram photos. I use Instagram to share pictures of the food I eat, workouts and snapshots of life. I also use Google+.
How big is your content marketing team?Just me!
What is the biggest challenge you have when it comes to content creation?The biggest challenge is finding time to do it all. There are so many social media platforms that it's impossible to excel at all of them. I'm working to figure out which are best for promoting my content and engaging my readers.
What changes have you noticed in content marketing over the past year or so?Pinterest has exploded. It can be a huge traffic driver if you use it correctly. Instagram has also become really big as a way to market your content. I don't think either of these will go away anytime soon. Visual content is what people like and want more of.
What are the most common mistakes you see people making when it comes to content marketing?Some people struggle to find a balance between self-promotion and promoting others. It's a delicate balance but I've found that if you spread the love, the love comes back to you.
People struggle to find a balance between self-promotion and promoting others.
What were you hoping would happen once you began content marketing?I was hoping to drive more traffic to my blog. Yes it has happened, slowly. Now that I'm more established, I can definitely see the general dips in traffic that bloggers experience across the board i.e. lower traffic in the summer, more in the fall and winter. It took several years to grow my audience to where it is now. I'm still working on ways to capture the one-time visitors that come from sites like Pinterest and make them returning visitors.
Expect to see seasonal dips in traffic, with more visits in fall and winter.Click To Tweet
What has been the most noticeable effect from content marketing?Increased pageviews! Using social media and other content tools to market my content has helped me gain new readers and increased my pageviews which has in turn helped me make more revenue from ads and secure opportunities such as sponsored posts.
What surprised you about content marketing?I didn't think it would be so much work. There's always more that you can be doing and it's exhausting and can easily overtake your entire day if you let it. You have to really focus on what you want to excel at and spend your time on and then set boundaries, do what you can in that time and then let the rest go.
I try to stay away from specific numbers because it's too easy to get caught up and obsess over them. - Lindsay Livingston, RD