The One-Two Punch of Authenticity and Strategy

The One-Two Punch of Authenticity and Strategy

Reader Comments (14)

  1. Hi Sonia,

    I couldn’t agree more… but as I’ve studied, participated and engaged with blogging for nearly a decade I’ve to the conclusion that too many are struggling because they are doing exactly what you are saying; and they are pursuing strategy without clarity.

    By clarity, I am asking “what business are you “really” in? from the consumer / or prospect point of view.

    The focus is on building a relevant and clear message that is consistent. And, it’s for one person who has one problem, need, want or desire in one piece of content.

    I had a speaking coach fifteen years ago who said; “Don, if you deliver a broad speech, no matter how good it is 100% of the people will leave the room and pat you on the back on the way out. However, if you get clear and specific 20% will run to you asking “OMG, how did you know…?”

    Relevance and specificity come from clarity… and then the strategies follow.

    That’s how you avoid a strategy without honesty and avoid becoming a fraud in this arena.

    We’re talking with real people who have real problems, needs, wants and desires solved or fulfilled.

    Persuasion happens we can accomplishment this… and it leads to the establishment of competency, confidence and trust.

    In my opinion, this is how we get to an authentic message that is worthy of content being shared, linked to, and engaged with… that translates into real sales opportunities for our businesses.

    Loved the article Sonia. Thanks so much for sharing your insights!!!!

    Happy New Year!

    ~ Don

  2. You guys had me at #4.

    From the outset, Brian was not only smart and instructive but I could tell he truly believed in his own Kool-Aid. He wanted us to as much or more for us as he did for his own business goals.

    At least that was the vibe, and I’m sticking to it.

    That vibe just grew as more likeminded weirdos were drawn to the waterhole. I’ve enjoyed getting to “know” them all and learning from their own USPs (Unique Standout Personalities).

    When you showed up shocking pink, I was enchanted because it was a signature and not a gimmick. Your hair is a manifesto against a traditional corporatized lifestyle. You gave us permission to speak our minds, to live our values, and to be fully human …and showed us it was not only acceptable but good for business.

    Eternal gratitude for that.

    The Back-to-the-Basics approach for 2017 is invigorating. You’ve set a solid pace, slow and steady. Knowing how fond you both are of open loops (, I’m excited at the prospect of what’s around the bend and further down the stretch.

    • “He wanted us to as much or more for us as he did for his own business goals.”

      What the heck did I put in my coffee this morning?

      Translation: It was always about us, his audience.

  3. Sonia,

    Thank you SO MUCH for this post. In content marketing, I find it can be difficult to draw the line between churning out x amount of blogs to boost search rankings and really giving audience members something of value.

  4. Hi Sonia,

    This article addresses a common issue: most (new) business bloggers don’t know the difference between content marketing and copywriting.

    Like your article says, there’s a place for both online. You just gotta have a smart strategy to know when and where to use each one.


  5. Thanks for the info Sonia. I’m enjoying this transition in marketing/sales (if you want to call it that). There is no longer a need for manipulation and tricky to get customers. The newer way that focuses on content through honesty is by far the better approach. Why not provide something valuable so customers keep coming back for more?

  6. Just don’t write when you are hungry! Realistically though don’t write at all if you don’t have value to add. Everyone wants to make income from their work but when driven by income people tend to look for shortcuts which end up ruining their goal in the first place.

  7. This was hugely helpful, thank you! I have just launched my own personal training website and this blog post was very helpful in expanding my business!

  8. Hey
    Thank you for the very clear statement, that you CAN and HAVE to be both honest and strategic. Basically something I thought for a while as well, but couldn’t put it into words.

  9. Love these rules of thumb, Sonia, especially #4. Having a well-defined mission and values makes the job of the content strategist (and your content creators) so much easier.

  10. Hi Sonia,

    Thanks for the article. I’m a big fan of Sonia’s Law. I might have to print that one out and hang it on my wall so I can look at it when I’m writing!

    What I take away from this is that even though we’re doing business here, it’s important to remember why we got into writing in the first place. Because that’s where the authenticity comes from, I think. It’s in that love for the written word and that dedication to practicing the craft.

    The strategy is necessary, but it’s important to let out the little kid who loved reading Harry Potter on a rainy day. At least once in a while.

  11. I think for a lot of “casual” business owners, i.e. people that want to make money online and aren’t really your typical entrepreneur type, can get away with no strategy. Pure authenticity without a game plan can get you far IMO. These are the people with blogs who just write about their passion and use the traffic to get $$ from Google Adsense or affiliate sales. You can generate six figures this way. I’ve done it.

    But to take your business to the next level, and really have growth in mind for the future, a strategy is important. An optimized sales funnel can be the difference between 1k visitors per day earning you $100 and that same traffic earning you $1,000.

    It’s hard to start out like that for most people, including myself. I need to go through the transformation and see the limitations of just producing content for content’s sake before I could really see how having a little marketer sit on your shoulder could help you change from a blogger to a business owner.

    It’s a delicate situation though! There’s been so many instances where I read some content I love, sign up for an email list, and unsubscribe two weeks later as I can see the funnel closing in. It’s very easy to lose that trust. But then again, maybe everyone wants something for free and as a business owner you you have to draw a line somewhere, saying that “this area” is for free content, and “this other area” is not.

    Either way, it’s a very interesting dynamic to navigate, especially when online business can be so different from IRL business.

  12. Hi Sonia,

    Thanks for this post. As a starter, you let me know what matters most. This is a great way to start my content marketing. Thank you so much!

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