Often, when it comes to launching, writing, recording, building funnels, or whatever else it is we need to do, it’s easy to start because we’re motivated. But the longer a project goes on, the harder it can be. The more frustrating it can get. And the more likely quality starts to go out the window. Well, today’s guest, Elizabeth Pampalone, has a solution: get it all done in 1 day. From launching websites to writing a full year of blog posts, Elizabeth’s process of blocking off a whole day and walking with her clients through a tried and true framework has proven successful. Here is how she does it. Plus, in Build something more, we chat about early businesses and how to handle premium products for clients.
- Implementing is the hardest part of the work for most people – building that into a day, and into your schedule helps you ship.
- You need a “Deep Work” style day to get the work done. Eliminate distractions and context switching.
- Checklists are a huge help. They reduce the mental energy of figuring out what to do next so you can just do.
- Elizabeth Pampalone
- Elizabeth on Facebook
- Elizabeth on Instagram
- Elizabeth on Linkedin
- How Your Content Strategy can Grow Your Business with Jean Perpillant
- Monster Contracts
- Creator Crew
Joe Casabona: Real quick before we get started, I want to tell you about my free weekly newsletter, Build Something Weekly. You can sign up for it over at buildsomething.email. It has all sorts of things, insights, and questions, it has the top takeaways of each episode weekly, it has the latest content I’ve created, and it’s generally where I first announced new things I’m working on, like this new Beyond 8 workshop that I’m putting together to help podcasters fight podfade. You can find out more about that and everything in my free weekly newsletter over at buildsomething.email.
Intro: Hey, everybody, and welcome to Episode 235 of How I Built It, the podcast that offers actionable tech tips for small business owners. Today’s sponsors are TextExpander and Nexcess. You’ll hear about them later in the show.
Now, often when it comes to launching, or writing, recording, building funnels, or whatever else we need to do in our business, it’s maybe easy to get started because we’re so motivated, we’re excited about the new project or the new thing that we are launching. But the longer the project goes on, the harder it can be to stay motivated, the more frustrating it can get, and the more likely quality starts to go out the window. This is true of our own projects if we’re not seeing any gains, and it could be especially true of client projects, especially if they take a long time to get content to us or provide feedback.
Well, today’s guest, Elizabeth Pampalone has a solution. Get it all done in one day. From launching websites to writing a full year’s worth of blog posts, Elizabeth’s process of blocking off a whole day and walking with her clients through a tried and true framework has proven successful. Here’s how she does it.
Plus, in Build Something More we chat about early businesses—we both had a computer repair business at first—and how to handle premium products and plugins, and other subscriptions for your clients. If you want to get access to ad-free extended episodes a day early, plus everything else that we talked about in this show, you can head over to howibuilt.it/235.
Okay, let’s get on with the show.
Joe Casabona: All right, I am here with Elizabeth Pampalone. She is the CEO of Absolute Marketing. I’m really excited because today we’re going to be talking about how to create just a bunch of different types of content in one day. This is something I’ve been talking about and teaching in my courses. And what caught my eye was the social media part because I’m bad at that. But before we get into all that, let’s bring Elizabeth on. Elizabeth, how are you today?
Elizabeth Pampalone: I’m doing great.
Joe Casabona: Awesome. Thanks so much for being on the show. I know we went over the pronunciation of your name before the show. So I hope I did okay there.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yes.
Joe Casabona: Awesome. Awesome. I’m American-Italian and so I always want to say like, “Pamplone” or something like that. I put a little [inaudible 00:03:32] on the end there.
Elizabeth Pampalone: That’s my husband. He’s Italian as well.
Joe Casabona: Nice. Awesome. So before we get into this topic, first of all, your pitch was very good. For anybody listening to this show, and they’re like, “How do I get on How I Built It?” good pitch with actionable advice for the audience. And this is exactly… yours stood out for a bunch of reasons. How to create one year of social media, blog posts, or email funnels or connected brand or website in one day really stood out to me because I create a lot of content throughout the week. Usually, it’s one piece of content per day.
I am epically bad at social media, despite having some automations to share my own stuff. So I’m excited to talk about kind of what goes into that. But before we get into all of that, according to your bio, you are my best guest ever. An author, international speaker, podcaster, entrepreneur, expert marketer with over 20 years’ experience. Just tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yes, I have been doing this for quite some time. I actually started building websites when I was 14. So I have been doing this a long time.
Joe Casabona: Nice.
Elizabeth Pampalone: I really just love the aspect of marketing. Like take Something that was an idea or a product or something like that and then helping people understand it, helping people to be educated on it, and then eventually want it, need it, buy it, those kind of things.
And so yes, that’s when I started my business. I actually started a computer repair company because I had gone through a divorce at the age of 20. And had all that kind of all happen at once. You know, I’d gotten married, gotten divorced, and then started a company.
My computer repair company did really well. I had that company for 10 years and sold it. And during that time, I was still in love with marketing. I was doing my own marketing. And I decided that about five years into the computer repair company, I want to start a second company, which was marketing, a marketing firm. And I still own that today.
My sister actually recently came on to work with me in that as well, because she’s also really into marketing. She’s actually an award-winning designer. So she came on with us, and she helps me with all the things that we do with the one year of marketing in five days.
Joe Casabona: That’s incredible. We have very similar paths. I also started building websites when I was 14. I didn’t start a real company, but I made a bunch of money on the side with computer repairs and selling mix CDs. One of those is slightly more legal than the other. I feel like we already have a lot in common. I would never ask a lady her age, but I started using FrontPage like 2001 when I started making websites. So that was-
Elizabeth Pampalone: I’m a few years ahead of you. Just a few.
Joe Casabona: Okay. Awesome
Elizabeth Pampalone: I did HTML Straight up. Straight up HTML and Notepad. That’s where I started.
Joe Casabona: Wow, very nice. My friend, [Steve Mikash?], shout out to Steve Mikash, he showed me the light when I got to college. He showed me… Notepad++ existed by that time. So he showed me that. I’ll tell you, I’m sure because you probably got the same kind of comments, people were extremely impressed that I would hand-code websites. And I’m like, “This is the only way that… once you do it, that’s the only way to do it.”
Elizabeth Pampalone: Exactly. In 2007, I was given a tip by another marketer who had been in business for many years and I was kind of just barely starting that new journey. And she’s like, “You really need to be on WordPress.” And I was like, “I can do this by hand by myself. I don’t need that.” And she was like, “No, no, really, seriously, honey, you need this.” And I was like, “No, no, no, no.” And so for a whole year, I didn’t do anything with it. I just kept doing things the way I was doing them. Then I found WordPress, I was a WordPress, I would say, groupie for almost 10 years.
Joe Casabona: Wow.
Elizabeth Pampalone: And then I decided to take a totally different turn. I completely revamped my business. And in 2017, that’s when we actually changed the entire format to what it is now which is the 1 Year of Marketing in 5 Days. And we now use exclusively Squarespace. So I went from being a Squarespace hater and a WordPress professor to a Squarespace lover. Now I have my reasons about why not to use WordPress. Lots of topsy-turvy there.
Joe Casabona: That’s amazing. Again, shout out to Steve Mikash here. I feel like I should give him royalties on my whole career. We worked in like the same computer lab, and I said, “I think I want to build my own content management system,” because I was like updating databases, I wrote through forums and things like that, and he said, “Have you heard of WordPress?” And this was in 2004. And I got on it immediately. All of my clients’ sites were on WordPress by 2006.
I’m still, I would say, a constructive critic of WordPress but I still use it for a lot of things. So maybe in Build Something More, we could talk about why you moved from WordPress to Squarespace. A lot of people listening to this show are WordPress people. I am very much like, Use the tool that works best for you. So I’d be excited to talk about that.
So, in 2017—that’s a great segue here—I guess less now that I pointed it out, but in 2017, you pivoted to this kind of build this whole, we’ll say, marketing or content plan in over the course of a few days. So why don’t you tell us a little bit about maybe your current business now and how you came up with this idea because that is… you know, coming up with content is hard.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yeah, yeah. It was 2017, I was in the middle of kind of a breakdown. I’ve been running my business for almost 10 years at this point and I’ve been doing everything the same. So I just sold the computer business and the marketing business was kind of the only thing I was running. It was the main deal. And that was good, because I really loved it.
But I was finding that my clients would, you know… we did 30-day websites. And so my clients would start off strong, the first week was great, we had milestones set every week, we had very simple plan, it wasn’t complicated. And then day 29 to 30, after many, many emails and calls from me, they would basically flood my inbox with all of their information and I would basically have to build something in a day. Because I had other clients coming in the next day, or the next week and I couldn’t just have everything hanging on being delayed.
And I did charge premiums, I said, “If you go over, well, it’s going to be this much per week.” And that really didn’t do anything for anybody. So they just still kept being lazy in that way. And they just were overwhelmed. And I realized that if I could build a website in a day with a client on the phone, essentially. I had to be on the phone with them. It was a very tedious process. It would be them send me something, me build it, me call them, “Hey, what do you think? Go look at it,” all these things.
And I was like, “What if I just sat them down in a room and locked them in the room for eight hours, and got all the stuff from them in that time period. I know I can build it in a day. That has nothing to do with this. It’s about them being willing to give up one day of their life in order to get this done. And just get it done. Like move on, instead of it taking up 30 days of their life and 30 days of my life, and making me stressed and upset.”
So I went on my website, I took everything off. I just totally deleted everything off of it and said, “I do websites in a day. That’s all I do.”
Joe Casabona: Wow.
Elizabeth Pampalone: I just started with that. I didn’t start with anything else. All the other stuff came later, but just website in day. So I got my first client and she said, “Well, I need a website, but I don’t have a brand.” And I was like, “We can do that in a day as well.” And I just said it. And then she’s like, “Okay, well, what about social media?” “Also, we can do that in a day. We’ll do a year’s worth of that in a day.” And she was like, “Okay.”
So she booked three days. And I had a flat rate for my days, we still do. And we sat together in a room for three days. I took her to lunch. We had kind of like little fun lunchtime together, and we got every single thing done that I promised.
Joe Casabona: Wow.
Elizabeth Pampalone: And I wasn’t even stressed about it. And it was awesome.
Joe Casabona: That’s amazing. Because, I mean, I think a lot of people listening can level with this, right? The hardest part almost, especially these days where you have these site builders that… most small businesses especially aren’t going to care really exactly how the website looks. They need a website for whatever reason. The hardest part is getting the content from the client, getting the information from the client. I know that I have a new contract now, shout out to Nathan Ingram, he was on the show earlier.
Elizabeth Pampalone: I love it.
Joe Casabona: Oh, he’s so great. He has a Monster Contract. I’ll have a link in the show notes, which you can find over at howibuilt.it/235. And you know, that kind of has some stopgaps to make sure that you are getting your content and stuff like that. But again, if you’re doing like the 30-day guarantee and you’re creating your pipeline, you can’t make something out of nothing. Or you can, but it’s not going to be good. So I love the kind of quote-unquote locking a client in a room. Now, this is a metaphorical room, or is this like most of your clients are local?
Elizabeth Pampalone: No, we’re in person.
Joe Casabona: Awesome.
Elizabeth Pampalone: So I actually either go to my client wherever they are. So I’ve traveled to do this, which has been fun. We have offices all over the place. And then I’ve also had clients who said, “You know what? I’m coming from Atlanta. I’m coming from Texas. I’m coming from wherever.” And they fly to us. Because we’re in Florida so it makes a nice little vacation.
Joe Casabona: Awesome. Where about in Florida are you?
Elizabeth Pampalone: In Jacksonville?
Joe Casabona: Okay, nice. So like the top of Florida essentially?
Elizabeth Pampalone: Mm-hmm. Yeah. Right in the northern side. We don’t get too many of the hurricanes. We get them, they blow by us, but they don’t really hit us.
Joe Casabona: Nice, nice. That’s great. My brother lives in Orlando. We’re big Disney fans. So we’ve driven through Jacksonville driving down from New York. Especially when he was Going to college, we would drive him to college. Anyway, that’s super cool.
You’re doing in-person work, you’re getting your clients to come up with all the stuff they need to come up with in a day, which, again, is probably good for them because then it’s not hanging over their head and you’re not being rushed as much. The expectations are set, right? Because if there’s a contract that says, like, “This has to be handed over in 30 days, then most people going to be like, “All right, on day 29, I’m going to start thinking about this.” So that’s really cool.
And it sounds like you started with website and then expanded based on the needs of your clients.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yes, yes. It’s expanded to seven full days but we typically do a five-day session with someone. Sometimes a three-day session depending on what they need. Some clients come to me and I look at their brand and I’m like, “You’re good to go with that. We don’t need to spend a whole day on that.”
Other clients come to me and I’m like, “Yeah, your brand needs work. It needs help. It’s there, but it’s not there.” So I will actually say, “I’d rather spend the day on it. And not to build a completely new brand but we need to tweak the graphics. We need to edit the colors. We need to just finesse it a little bit.”
And then the branding day is not just “Hey, here’s your logo.” It’s we’re building an eBook, we’re writing that content, we’re creating a funnel out of that. So it’s not just here’s your logo and off you go. And we’re doing a lot with color psychology and font psychology and working through the name. Is that the right name for you? And all that stuff that people just don’t think about. They go, “Here’s the name I like. Here’s somebody who can design a logo for me. End of story.” That’s not really the end of the story for us.
Joe Casabona: A strong brand from the beginning is important, right?
Elizabeth Pampalone: Mm-hmm.
Joe Casabona: Because coming up with the right… I’m suffering from this right now. I’m like, “I help small business owners.” That’s like a terrible niche and my messaging can’t really revolve around that. So now I’m like, “Well, do I exclude some of the people that I’ve brought on to my audience by saying, I help creators launch online courses? Is that the thing I need to do?” And it is. Spoiler alert for people listening to this in the future, it is.
My first online course website was called WP In One Month, and people were like, “Oh, so you can learn WordPress in one month?” And I’m like, “Actually, they’re just like self-paced courses.” And they’re like, “What’s the one-month part? And I’m like, “A domain I bought. That’s it.” So I rebranded to creator courses, which makes way more sense and is a better brand. I think that’s really cool.
Again, being in this business for 20 years, I have a lot of experience. But my brother is starting… if he’s starting a construction company or something, he might not have the insights that I have, even though I’ve talked to him a lot. He probably doesn’t listen to anything I say. So having an expert there to help walk you through that is great.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yeah, we found that too with a lot of small businesses. They have the idea, they have the expertise to do what they want to do, but the marketing and the branding of it doesn’t come as easily. Like you said, starting with that really strong brand is going to help all the other things fall into place. Then that is huge, especially if social media is something you struggle with or website or just writing content, in general, is something you struggle with. Knowing the brand inside and out first is why we put it on the first day.
Sponsor: This episode is brought to you by Nexcess. Look, I know what it’s like to spend too much time managing your website instead of your business. In fact, the previous host for this very show made it harder for me to focus on creating content, because I was always trying to fix some problem with my website, especially on new episode days. And that’s why I switched to Nexcess.
With Nexcess‘ managed WordPress hosting, I don’t have any problems to fix because Nexcess fixes them for me, usually before I even know about them. I don’t need to worry about my site going down on new episode days or updates or backups. I don’t even need to worry about plugging vulnerabilities. Nexcess has me covered. That’s why I can be so consistent.
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Joe Casabona: I actually get to ask the title question here, which I haven’t been able to do in a while, which is, um, how do you build that? It’s like a topic a day, basically. I will link your website in the show notes, because you have it broken down really well. A week or a power day, and then you pick the thing that you want, and what that all entails. But if I needed a year of social media or a year of blog posts or website, how do you build that? What’s the process look like?
Elizabeth Pampalone: Well, we have a formula that I developed a couple of years ago, basically, when I started in 2017 with this. It’s essentially everything is broken down into steps, and then just done. So we do a little brainstorming in the morning for most of the days, then we do a little bit of structure building, and then we have lunch, and then we implement it. It’s pretty much that simple.
And I think a lot of times people just get caught up in the implementation and they just don’t do it. They need someone does a strategy for them. Maybe they brainstorm with somebody, maybe they do a mastermind, and they get some of that out. But then they don’t actually implement. And so that’s what I find a lot of people have the hardest time with, but that’s actually built into every single day.
I don’t actually ask my clients to bring anything. If they come to me, and they say, “I need a five day,” I actually ask them to not do anything until they show up. I give them a checklist, because so my people are type A, and they just need a checklist. But it’s things like if you already have a bio written, you can bring that. If you already have a headshot, which we don’t have time to do on the day, you can bring that. So it’s just like a list of things that they probably already have sitting around they could just bring with them.
But I try to get people to relax before they even show up because I want them to be fresh. And I don’t do a ton of research on them either. And the reason I don’t do that is because when they come in, I want them to tell me everything as if I know nothing. And that is where I see the holes in their messaging. That is where I see the gaps in their brand. And we can very quickly fill those things in by me asking more questions that allows them to go, “Oh, I thought I explained that” because they know what they know and they don’t know what other people don’t know. And so that’s where we come in to help fix that.
Joe Casabona: That’s great. I love that. I kind of do the same thing with podcast guests. I don’t do a lot of research because I don’t want this to be basically a scripted show, where “Oh, tell me about X. Oh, now tell me about…” I want to be surprised and interested just like my guests are. So hopefully I’m asking questions that they have.
And doing this, especially with clients, because… again, I’m in a mastermind group, and when I redesign a landing page, they’re the first people to see it. And they’re like, “What is this offer?” or “What is this pricing? You should probably do this because that’s not really clear.” Not knowing anything, allows you to ask everything.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm.
Joe Casabona: Awesome. Again, asking them not to bring anything is great, too. All they have to do is show up and implement.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yeah.
Joe Casabona: So we kind of talked about the website, getting the content together. I’m really curious about one year of social media, or one year of blog posts, right? Because I know it could take me over an hour to write a single blog post. Tell me a little bit more about that. You’re coming up with topics or ways to reuse content you’re using in other places. What’s that look like?
Elizabeth Pampalone: So we do the same kind of thing. We brainstorm in the morning, we go through what their audience is like, what their audience looks like, what they want, what they need, what they haven’t been saying on social media. A lot of times people forget to sell on social media. And they do need to also do that. They just are so worried about content, content, content, and they’re not worried about, “Hey, don’t forget, we do this cool thing over here.”
And so we try to make sure that that’s in balanced and in proportion so that when they actually do create the posts that they’re not overbalancing with too many funny cat videos and not enough selling. So we create that schedule and then we put that structure to it. So then we have a schedule for the entire week, for the entire month, etc. We just kind of build it piece by piece.
And then once we’re done building the structure, we all get to work. So whether it’s me and them or one of my team and the client. Sometimes the clients will bring their own marketing person or someone who works with them who’s really into the whole mission and we’ll all work together to create posts. And the owner will basically have a say on “Yeah, that’s great. No, I want to change it,” whatever. Some people are really into, I need to know every single period and comma that’s going into it. Other people are like, “Hey, if you created it, and I kind of know that gist, great.”
And so we have clients that are all different types like that. But once that all that content is created, we put it in the scheduler. And we do it as we go. So that by the end of that day, we’ve got a whole year’s worth of content designed, written, and scheduled. So we’re building the graphics out while we’re writing everything. So we’re doing it very much just step by step. And a lot of times people will take so much time on it. But really, if you actually sit down, you got three or four people working on it, it takes no time at all.
Joe Casabona: That’s incredible. I want to touch on something you said here, which is we look at what their audience looks like. How many people come in not really knowing what their audience looks. If they don’t have their brand solidified, they don’t, until we kind of help them with that.
And a lot of people they might know who they’re targeting, but then they might be on Instagram when they don’t need to be. Or they might not be using Pinterest when they should be. And so I think that with social media, they just heard you should be on everything and everything you should be posting everywhere, and all the time.
And really that’s not the case, depending on the client’s lifestyle, their client’s lifestyle, their client’s needs, their client’s ability to get online. Because sometimes when you have, let’s say, parents. Here’s pretty much how most of them are. They’re working a nine to five job or something similar. They might get on at lunch. They might get on at two o’clock, and they might get on after the kids are in bed.
And so posting at times that are not those times are typically not going to help them out. So really looking at what those people’s lifestyle is like. If that’s their client, then we need to go after that and we need to post when it’s appropriate. But if it’s someone if they’re going after, you know, women under 35, then we’ve got a whole different strategy for that. So really looking at what their client looks like in that way so that they can post appropriately, not too much, not too little.
And we do reuse a lot of content. We do use content that evokes action from their clients and potential clients. We also try to make it as much a part of their voice as we can. We don’t want to post something that’s off the wall, or just like, “Why would they post that?” And a lot of times, people do that without knowing it, and then their clients end up confused. So we want to make sure everything is branded, everything is cohesive, and that that message is the same no matter what we’re posting about.
Joe Casabona: Awesome. That makes a lot of sense. I really like that. Posting on social media at times are not good. But I can’t believe like… you saying it explicitly has helped me because I’m just like, “Well, I got to post in the morning or whatever. But if my target audience is getting their kids ready for school or something, they’re not going to see it when I post at 7:30 because they’re getting their kids ready for school.
I guess that makes a lot of sense You have these tools that are like, “The optimal time to post it’s like noon,” or whatever. Maybe you don’t know, maybe it’s right. But-
Elizabeth Pampalone: And a lot of times it doesn’t necessarily matter so much. But you want to keep that in mind because it can help people see it. But then at the same time, it’s more about consistency. And that’s what we’re really providing with that full year.
The times will vary over the course of time. And once you have a couple of months in and you’ve been posting at noon every day or every other day or whatever it is, then you can go back and look at your analytics. Which posts were doing better? My noon posts? My random 2 p.m. posts that I put in or my scheduled 7 p.m. posts? Like looking at where your actual posts that had the most traction then you can go back and adjust your times if needed. But most of the time we don’t have to do that for our clients which is really awesome.
Joe Casabona: That’s fantastic. I’m also going to mention the episode I did recently with Jean Perpillant. He’s a really good friend of mine but we talked about social media. And he basically says, you know, you got to try and see what works for you. We had a conversation about how I was doing YouTube shorts and Instagram reels and I was not doing Tik Tok because as an elder millennial Tik Tok scares me. But I wasn’t sure what I could do with that or I would do with that.
So I suspect that you and your team helps kind of understand which social network works for me, right? Tik Tok probably doesn’t work for me. YouTube is – if YouTube is a social network, I guess – YouTube is probably the one that my audience is hanging out at because they’re looking for tutorials and they want to know how to do a thing.
Elizabeth Pampalone: We have this whole thing. And every time I teach a class on social media, I go through this entire step-by-step breakdown of who’s on LinkedIn, who’s on Facebook, who’s on Pinterest. And I also go through my favorite part, which is the half-life of a post. That’s how long your posts lives from the time you post it until the time the algorithm has it so shoved down into the nether regions of the feed, but it’s just gone forever.
And you’ve also seen when you’re on Facebook and you’re scrolling, and then all of a sudden you look away, and you look back, and everything’s different because the algorithm basically refreshes the feed. That’s another way that that half-life gets recycled. So basically, your posts will live for a certain amount of time as soon as you post it. It is basically countdown clock. So with Facebook, you’re looking at about 30 minutes.
Joe Casabona: Wow, that’s wild.
Elizabeth Pampalone: In Twitter, it’s 21 minutes.
Joe Casabona: Wow, that would that one is a little less shocking to me.
Elizabeth Pampalone: And my favorite, Pinterest, now if you’ve got the right demographic, though, 151,000 hours?
Joe Casabona: What?
Elizabeth Pampalone: It’s a three and a half months.
Joe Casabona: Wow.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yeah.
Joe Casabona: Your I think the fourth person this year to mention Pinterest and how important it is-
Elizabeth Pampalone: It’s got to be for the right audience, though. You got to have the right audience. It’s about 80% to 90% women. Some men are on there, but 80%, 90% women. And it is 18 to 65. It is a huge spread of ages. So you definitely got to have the right demographic and you got to have the right type of product.
If you’re a lawn care company, and you’re local, probably not going to work out. And this is not doing ads. This is just posting. This is not ads. And if you are online company, or you’re a boutique, people are actually 10% more likely to purchase from a Pinterest link than from any other source on the internet.
Joe Casabona: Wow.
Elizabeth Pampalone: So depending on your industry, depending on what you’re selling, Pinterest could be amazing for you.
Joe Casabona: That’s incredible. Gosh, 21 minutes on Twitter versus three and a half months on Pinterest. I’m sure the people on Pinterest are happier than the people on Twitter too.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yeah, I’m sure.
Joe Casabona: That’s like my weekly dump on Twitter, I guess. That’s where I’m the most active though, because it’s easy to share things and thoughts or whatever. This has been really great. We have a pretty good idea of the process and how it works. Let’s say our listeners are like, “Maybe I can try this myself first,” what tips do you have for them for trying to do this?
Elizabeth Pampalone: Schedule the day. Schedule a day for yourself. And not a day where you’re at home and things are happening, I got to put the laundry and I gotta take the dog out. No. You have to schedule a day like if you have to like book a hotel room for yourself, or get that private room at the library or go to the local co-working space and grab a conference room. Like a whole day, eight hours in a room by yourself. Bring lunch if you have to, because you don’t really need the distraction of going out and just sit in the room, lock yourself in and get the stuff done.
And then the other thing is break it down to pieces. Whatever it is you’re trying to do, break it down to pieces, and write yourself a to-do list and literally cross those things off one at a time as you get them done.
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And now let’s get back to it.
Joe Casabona: The schedule a day for yourself reminds me of Deep Work by Cal Newport which I had. My wife realized I think… so we have two kids, third one on the way in December. And at the height of the pandemic, you know, she’s a nurse, longtime listeners will know that she’s a nurse, schools were closed, and so I was watching both kids for 14 hours three or four days a week.
She could tell that the pandemic was wearing on me. I work at home so I’m always home. And once things were starting to be relatively safe, she booked me a night at an Airbnb. Actually, it was just a BNB not even Airbnb. Just a bed and breakfast. And I had a hotel room to myself I had these beautiful grounds to walk and read or work or whatever. I read like four books over the course of like 24 hours.
So, you know, dedicating that time that indistractible time to yourself is super important. I like what you said. Break it down, create a to-do list. Because you don’t want to spend the first hour of that time going, what do I need to do right now?
Elizabeth Pampalone: Right.
Joe Casabona: Awesome. I usually don’t explicitly ask this, but is there like a PDF, like an opt-in maybe that you offer for people who want to try this themselves?
Elizabeth Pampalone: I do you. I actually have something called the Pro Toolkit. It is all the tools that we use. So to kind of give yourself a head start on what social media scheduler should I use, what website platform. Anything that you need for a business, we have a toolkit on that. It’s at the top of our website at getabsolutemarketing.com.
Joe Casabona: Great. Again I seriously never do that. But I’m going to link that in the show notes. And I signed up. Elizabeth probably will be able to verify this.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yes.
Joe Casabona: I just signed up. So I’m getting in too. First of all, I love checklists. I’m like that type a person. Also just a quick tip. Checklist opt-in is really good. They’ve really done well for me. Nick Scalice over at Landing Page School says that that’s his best opt-in ever. It’s like a landing page checklist.
So not only are they useful, but they’re also helpful to you as the content creator. But this is great. Because again, I’m pretty good at coming up with blog post ideas, I have my own content on how to do that, but like email funnels, I constantly feel like those are underwhelming and underperforming. So social media is hard for me.
Elizabeth Pampalone: We do have one other thing which I will let you know about. And if you want to sign up, you could do that.
Joe Casabona: Okay.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Actually, we have a free membership. It’s at the bottom of our website. So the Pro Toolkit is at the top and the membership is at the bottom. We actually have a course on email marketing and a course on blogging. I actually tell you how to write a blog in 10 minutes.
Joe Casabona: Oh wow, that’s amazing.
Elizabeth Pampalone: And then, of course, social media and branding and website. So each of the five days has their own mini-course that you can do as a DIY. And that’s in our membership.
Joe Casabona: Awesome. I’m signing up for that right now too as we speak. This is a cool… mn.co, is that…?
Elizabeth Pampalone: Mighty Networks. It’s my platform.
Joe Casabona: Mighty networks?
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yeah. It’s actually in our Pro Toolkit as well. So if you decide to check it out and build your own, please do use our link. But it’s definitely worth it. And I’ve actually had several people who’ve used Kajabi and some of the other ones out there and they’ve actually switched to this because it is so superior.
Joe Casabona: Oh, that’s great. And I know I’ve talked about the benefits of like rolling your own… like I use Restrict Content Pro on WordPress, but with the community, I decided to go with Circle because I looked at BBpress or Buddypress and I’m like, “This is too much.”
Elizabeth Pampalone: I was in Circle before I was in this.
Joe Casabona: Interesting. Okay. I’m definitely going to check this out then .
Elizabeth Pampalone: This is still evolving. They have a rollout for the next like six months that they’re slowly dripping out of different adjustments to the system. And it is amazing. And what they have on [inaudible 00:40:55] plan for this is going to make it the premiere of all of the ones we mentioned just now. All of that is going to be so, so far superior to all of those. It’s going to be like all those rolled into one. It’s crazy.
So I’m super excited and I’m glad I’m kind of like in already, but it’s going to make creating content so much easier, and also your courses are going to be easier to navigate. There’s just going to be so many more aspects that are going to be awesome. They’re building the community and merging it with courses. It’s just so awesome. So I’m really excited.
Joe Casabona: Awesome. Well, I am in the process of signing… I’ve signed up now. I’m in. It looks really nice. It has Apple integrated login which makes me happy because that’s what I prefer to use nowadays. So awesome. This looks really cool. I’m really excited to get started with this.
Elizabeth Pampalone: It has an app too.
Joe Casabona: It has an app. Great. The Circle app is a little underwhelming. Their focuses are probably different. But I guess I’ll tell them that. I generally have a rule don’t provide feedback unless I’m providing it to the people as well. That’s why I’ve stopped mostly complaining on Twitter about companies before I at least talk to them first.
Elizabeth Pampalone: That’s a good rule. I like that.
Joe Casabona: Because I talk to people and they complain about their jobs or their clients or their significant others. And I’m like, “Have you talked to them about it?” They’re like, “No.” And I’m like, “Nothing is going to change. Well, nothing’s still going to change.” Okay, well now definitely nothing will change.
Elizabeth Pampalone: I really like that. I’m going to use that. I’m stealing that from you.
Joe Casabona: Awesome, very good. We’re stealing from each other today. That’s what the podcast is all about. This has been so great. Again, I’m really excited to dig into some of your resources. I will link to, again, all of them in the show notes over at howibuilt.it/235.
I do have my last question that I like to ask which is, do you have any trade secrets for us?
Elizabeth Pampalone: I think I’ve shared them all.
Joe Casabona: Amazing.
Elizabeth Pampalone: I think I have.
Joe Casabona: Awesome.
Elizabeth Pampalone: I think the Pinterest one is probably the biggest ones for me. That little piece of info about Pinterest I think that’s my one of my trade secrets.
Joe Casabona: That’s super interesting. I mean, it speaks to the attention span of… what are people on Pinterest? Are they called Pinners?
Elizabeth Pampalone: Yeah.
Joe Casabona: Pinners? Yeah. Because I mean, I’ve talked about this a little bit with… I’m like waxing poetic on today’s episode I guess. But I thought about this with Twitter, right? Is it’s easy to get like, we’ll say, the Twitter mob on your case. But like a week later people have forgotten. Completely forgotten. Getting canceled on Twitter is not real life getting cancelled. People move on pretty quickly.
Or the same, you have this big… I used to think that like tweeting a link to a new course I launched, people are going to sign up. Not unless they do it in the first 21 minutes apparently. People aren’t going to see it.
Elizabeth Pampalone: Unless you get retweeted.
Joe Casabona: Unless you get retweeted, yeah. So you need that retweetable. The most viral tweet I’ve ever had was a picture of a table in Barnes and Noble that had all of the books with swear words in them. And I was like, “This is my least favorite trend.” And that got like retweeted in like thousands of times. But that’s the funny thing about a viral tweet is it could just come back like months later. You like forgot about it and it comes back.
Okay, Pinterest, schedule a day for yourself, get the toolkit. You can find everything in howibuilt.it. So if you are a Creator Crew member, we are going to talk about finding and subsequently leaving WordPress. And we might talk a little bit about hand-coding websites. You can sign up for that at buildsomething.club for $5 a month or $50 a year. But if you are leaving us after the sign-off, Elizabeth, where can people find you to learn more?
Joe Casabona: Incredible. Well, I can say that it worked on me because you pitched yourself or someone pitched you and I really… my acceptance rate is pretty low. Not to pat myself on the back. I just want to make sure I’m getting good guests.
Elizabeth Pampalone: I heard that. I was quite proud when I got the email. I was like, “Yes.”
Joe Casabona: You know, it just helps. This is, again, for anybody listening who wants to be on the show. Yes, you talked a little bit about yourself, but you also told me exactly the benefit to my listeners. My listeners are the most important thing to me with this podcast, right? Because they are what makes the show work. So I want people who are going to help them and then selfishly help me as well.
Well, Elizabeth, this has been fantastic. Thank you so much for your time. I really appreciate it. Thank you. And thanks to everybody listening. If you liked this episode, share it with a friend. That’s what we’ll say. Share it, tell them “Hey, this Episode 235 really good, you should listen to it.” And thanks to our sponsors. Thanks to Elizabeth again. Thank you for listening. And until next time, get out there and build something.
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