Have you ever had a crisis of content confidence?
That moment where you don't trust your voice, wonder if all this talk of maintaining a conversation with your clients and prospects is just so much bullsh*t and sink into a state of "why bother?"
I could feel myself teetering on the edge of "why bother" last Monday. (Yep, even people who do this for a living and who know that content marketing is a long game of trust building and credential establishing have weak moments.)
Last week, my e-newsletter The 23rd, went out on a Monday afternoon. Checking the analytics showed my opens and clicks were in the ballpark I want them to be.
But there was also one (gasp) unsubscribe.
Cue my inner critic, who I usually refer to as Roger Ebert, but this time sounded alarmingly like a 10th grade mean girl.
"Nice work, Spammy McSpammerson."
Actually, it was nice work.
I knew the content was strong and useful (7 questions to ask yourself when you think you've run out of things to write about.)
I knew that a once-a-month e-newsletter was not overloading anyone's in box.
The unsubscriber just decided that my content or my services weren't for him. Fair enough. We both move on with our lives and the world keeps turning.
People unsubscribe. It's not a bad thing, really, because you only want to be talking to people who want you to talk to them.
Or as Beth Hayden wrote in a Copyblogger post: "Your job is not to make everyone happy — it’s to do your absolute best for your target audience, and let people who are NOT your target market self-select out."
It should in no way trigger a crisis of content confidence, which I quickly reminded myself and my inner critic.
The next day, I ran into a client who also reminded me when she complimented the ideas in the newsletter.
And then another wrote back to tell me how useful the questions were to her.
And another remarked that she "loved brilliant questions" when she shared the article with her audience. (If you're curious or need a topic, you can read it here. It's the July 23rd issue of The 23rd.)
For those inner critics keeping score at home, that's 3-1 in favor of The 23rd. I like those odds.