When I started my business in 2019, I thought the best way to show up on social media was by providing my audience with a ton of educational content.
So, that’s what I did.
- I shared tips on how to write the most enticing Instagram bios.
- Created posts on how to increase your engagement.
- Provided examples of enticing HOOKS to write for your social media captions.
- And more!
Although educational posts can showcase your expertise and provide value to your audience, that content will only get you so far. In the online space, people buy from people they like, know, and trust.
So, how do you get people to like, know, and trust you?
“People don’t buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories, and magic!” – Seth Godin.
As I continued to create educational posts online, I realized something was missing from my online presence. Something that was preventing me from connecting with my followers on a deeper level. That kept my community from genuinely getting to know who the real ‘Brittany’ was. And in the end, hiring me for my services.
As a social media manager (at the time), I knew exactly what ‘this’ missing piece was…it was having the courage to create posts on social media that shared MY unique story. That helped me connect with my audience on a deeper level.
But I was scared to put myself out there.
Scared to use my voice.
Scared to share my opinions.
Scared to reveal too much about who I am.
So instead, I hid behind my educational posts and continued to create content this way for a long time.
It’s Our Stories That Build Trust & Connection With Our Audience.
Creating what I like to call Connection Content is what I strategically did for all of my clients and typically involves a little storytelling. Storytelling is one of the most powerful and effective ways to build connections with others, especially in the online space.
It’s through sharing our stories we discover that, although we may be of different backgrounds, cultures, or generations, there are certain emotions that we all experience. And these shared emotions are what bring us together.
Stories are also key in building the like factor with your audience. And when our audience likes us, they are more likely to trust and buy from us!
So what kind of stories should you be sharing?
We ALL Have A Story To Share
One of the biggest reasons I didn’t allow myself to share anything too personal online was that I genuinely didn’t think I had any stories to share.
I thought to have a story that would be of any impact or connect with others, I had to achieve something amazing, like climbing Mount Everest or running across the Sahara desert. Or have an inspiring story about overcoming adversity, healing from a traumatic experience, etc.
Maybe you feel the same way. And if you do, I am here to remind you that YOU still have stories to share and that your followers need to hear.
But, if you’ve gone through one of the above situations and feel comfortable sharing your personal experiences online, please do so. But also know that you do not have to. You get to decide which stories and experiences you share.
Evoke Emotion By Sharing Relatable Stories
The most powerful stories that you can share online as a business owner are relatable ones. If your followers can see themselves as the ‘character’ in your story or like you’ve been in their shoes, they are more likely to connect with your message and brand.
The stories that connect with our audience the best are the ones that evoke emotional reactions. Think fear, imposter syndrome, disappointment, loss, pain, joy, surprise, happiness, struggle, mistakes, failures, etc. We all have experienced these types of emotions in our life, even though we don’t like to share them. But, if you tell a story that people genuinely connect with and relate to, it’s more likely they’ll believe in you.
That’s why some of the best storytelling you as a business owner can share are the ones from mistakes you made, failures you experienced, and past business struggles you’ve overcome.
Sharing these types of stories help to humanise you and your brand.
Where perfectly curated feeds and IG Stories highlighting someone’s 6-figure launch or fabulous business seem to be the norm, standing out by sharing stories your followers can relate to will help you stand out and connect with your community on a deeper level.
How To Discover YOUR Stories
Sharing our stories online can be a VERY intimidating thought. It takes a lot of courage to be vulnerable and share any failures, mistakes, or struggles. But, it’s also one the most effective ways to develop deeper connections with your audience.
As soon as I allowed myself to show up more authentically online by sharing stories my audience could relate to (like this post, about the courses I invested in and never finished OR this post about how I used to charge $50 a month as a SMM – no lie!) I noticed how the conversations changed in my DMs and in the comments.
My audience felt compelled to share their own experiences or opened up further about their struggles. I was able to understand their needs better and create content or pitch services that would help them feel seen, safe and heard in the online space.
Although it wasn’t easy showing my imperfections and mistakes, it allowed my audience to feel like they weren’t alone on their own business journey. And we connected in a deeper way!
If you aren’t sure where to start, I want you to follow the following tips to help you discover which of your stories to share!
1. You Control What You Share
Remember, YOU get to choose what you share online.
You don’t have to divulge to the online world your most personal & challenging experiences, such as your divorce, miscarriage, or big business investment that didn’t work out. Sometimes, those experiences are too fresh, and you need time to process and heal.
Give yourself the space and time to heal, and only share stories from your personal life or business experience when you feel ready.
2. Share More Of You Online
When I coach my clients to share their stories online (aka creating connection content), we keep it simple. We will choose stories that are light-hearted & fun, so their followers get to know my client a little better.
- This might be a post of my client and her rescue dog.
- Or behind-the-scenes IG Stories of my client making her favourite tea.
- Or a reel showing day-in-the-life of your business.
These stories can be less intimidating and a great way to practice sharing more of YOU online. So ask yourself, how can I share more behind-the-scenes, my personality, or my interests online?
3. Lovingly Braindump YOUR Stories
If you are feeling stuck on what you could possibly share online, here’s a little trick I want to share with you. Follow the steps below to help you brainstorm your stories.
Step 1: Write down the following phrases
|Row A||Row B||Row C||Row D|
|My Unique Traits / Interests are…||I have struggled with (think of emotions/feelings)…||I’ve made the following mistakes…||From this experience I’ve learned this beautiful lesson…|
Step 2: Set a timer for 2 to 5 minutes and brainstorm some of YOUR unique traits or interests under Row A. These can be positive, beautiful traits that are unique to you, a habit you are working on changing, or things you are interested in.
|Row A||Row B||Row C||Row D|
|My Unique Traits, Interests or an experience I’ve had…||I have struggled with (think of emotions/feelings)…||I’ve made the following mistakes…||From this experience I’ve learned this beautiful lesson…|
|Being an introvert|
|People Pleasing (working on this)|
|My Love of Cafes & Chai Tea|
|Being a cat mom.|
Step 3: After you’ve listed your unique traits/interests (at least 5), I want you to answer the following questions under row B, C & D based on that initial trait/interest.
Allow whatever comes to your mind to be shared, without judgement, and know that everything you write does not have to be shared online. We are just taking the time to braindump your experiences, emotions and feelings.
|My Unique Traits, Interests or an experience I’ve had…||In business, I have struggled with…||I’ve made the following mistakes…||From this experience I’ve learned this beautiful lesson…|
|Being an introvert||Putting myself out there and networking with others, online and in-person in fear of being judged.||Waiting for opportunities (the clients, the connections, etc.) to come my way.||That I was using my introvertedness as an excuse for fear and how I missed out on incredible opportunities. But, with practice, I have been able to build genuine connections, I’ve gained new clients, referrals, and friends.|
|People Pleasing (working on this)||Increasing my prices, especially with current clients in fear they would leave or not renew their contracts.||Charging $50/month for SMM for a whole year and working harder while making less than in corporate and wondering if I am cut out to be an entrepreneur.||Strategies on how to increase my prices and communicate this change with my current clients. As well as how when I let some clients go who were not able to afford my new rates, I attracted new, more aligned clients.|
|My Love of Cafes & Chai Tea||Being motivated to create content every month.||Forcing myself to create content and feeling burnt out.||Bringing fun into my caption writing days by taking myself out to a cafe to write once a month!|
|Being a cat mom.|
Step 4: As you read through each row, you’ll see you’ve already created the outline of your story. You are sharing a unique trait of yours, something fun and personal, or an experience you’ve had and the lesson learned!
Some of these stories are playful and fun (like my love of cafes and chai tea), whereas others are a little more vulnerable (like my people-pleasing post). That’s okay! All of these can work as stories to share online.
Step 5: Browse through each row, pick at least 1 of those stories you feel comfortable with, and turn that into a post, IG Story, or reel on social media.
Practice Creates Confidence
Often, when we think of our unique stories, we can feel like we are the only ones going through these emotions or experiences. We also might feel like we aren’t cut out to be an entrepreneur because we’ve had these struggles, made these mistakes, or have certain habits we are working on.
But instead, these are the stories that allow you to find your voice. To connect with your audience on a more personal level. And to build like, know, and trust with your community online.
Another reason why we hold ourselves back from sharing our stories is that we feel like we aren’t a good writer.
If you feel like you aren’t a good writer, that’s okay! You don’t have to be an author, copywriter, or social media manager to effectively share your stories online.
Allow yourself to write from the heart. One of my best tips is to imagine you are having a conversation with a friend at a cafe. Allow your writing to sound conversational because those are the posts we connect with the most!
Also, remember that writing takes practice; the more we practice, the faster we discover our unique voice and become confident in sharing our stories online.
Share Your Story Today!
Today, I sprinkle connection content throughout all my posts, and wow, has it made a difference! These connection posts typically include a mixture of light-hearted stories and more vulnerable posts, where I pull back the curtains of my business journey & life.
Sharing these stories didn’t happen overnight, and it wasn’t easy.
But by sharing stories that I know my audience will resonate with, I’ve been able to attract more aligned clients and make a more significant impact in the online space.
Now, it’s your turn to slowly peel back the curtain of your business or brand and share more of YOU online.
Your audience needs to hear about your experiences.
Your followers desire to hear your message.
Your stories matter.
Which story about you, your business, or your life are you going to choose to share?
Brittany Miller is the CEO of a boutique social media consulting and mentorship business for heart-centered business owners, personal brands, and service providers called Brittany Miller Biz.
She has supported over 50+ clients internationally to become visible on social media, amplify their message, and create captivating content aligned with their brand voice & values. Connect with Brittany on Instagram or her Website.