Faithfully Social

Have You Actually Forgotten Your Why?

VlogCristina Comment

Why do you do anything?

What is the "why" behind your massive to-do list?

(You have one, because so do I!)

Lately, I have been obsessed with why. It's easy to say yes or no to something, or fly down rabbit holes. We get excited at the prospect initially, but after getting bogged down with details or getting distracted by everything else, we can lose our why. The why is what attracted us in the first place, so it's vital to our own personal success and fulfillment.

Have you forgotten why you blog? Why you started your own business? Why you do anything? In this vlog, I share examples of what happens when you forget your why and how to think about moving past it by @faithfulsocial

Today, I share a vlog about an instance where I asked someone why they chose to do something and they couldn't remember. Here are my thoughts on that.

I'm all for finishing what you started, but I am more about paying attention to what makes sense. Listen to your gut. If you don't know how, get quiet and listen. I'm reading a book called ReWork by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson. I underline, and star so many great tips, like this one, which totally relates to what we're talking about:

Ever find yourself working on something without knowing exactly why? Someone just told you to do it. It's pretty common, actually. That's why it's important to ask why you're working on _____. What is this for? Who benefits? What's the motivation behind it? Knowing the answers to these questions will help you better understand the work itself.

So tell me, what are you working on? Why are you doing it? What's the motivation? If you can't answer those questions anymore, consider taking a personal inventory and remembering your why, or maybe rethinking your strategy. If it's the latter, I pinky promise it will be ok. I do it all the time. 

Have you signed up for my VIP List? I am committing to sending out social media and blogging tips every week to people signed up to my list. We're going to become real besties. These aren't just tips culled from this blog, they're exclusive just to this list. I would love to see you there.

Have you forgotten why you blog? Why you started your own business? Why you do anything? In this vlog, I share examples of what happens when you forget your why and how to think about moving past it by @faithfulsocial
JVKom Chronicles

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Automation Versus Intention

Behind the Scenes, Email Subscriber ListCristina Comment

Tips are something we live by, have you noticed? Top ten tips for this, or top 5 must have tips for that. Heck, even I've used them. Tips, especially when noted in a headline, catch your eye, and if they're done right, pull you into the post and keep the reader going till the very, last word. 

Automation Versus Intention When do you automate and when are you intentional on social media? This post talks specifically about email subscriber lists via @faithfulsocial

Yesterday, a post I wrote for The SITS Girls was featured. I share 10 Blogging Tips that Will Actually Amaze You.  By far, this post has received the most comments of any post that I've shared there and it's not surprising. The title received an A+ from my favorite Title Analyzer from CoSchedule. It's one thing to have a great title, you have to have the content to back it up. I took this a step further and with each tip, included the reason why the tip was important. In all of the content I come across, it's the peek behind the scenes or the "why" behind something that get readers interested. How do I know? Because not only am I interested in how things get done, but why they're done in the first place. 

Last week, I took an intensive mastermind workshop called Blissboost. This 7 day intensive is run by Charissa Moore of House of Bliss. Not for the faint of heart, Charissa is a great copywriter, sharing all of the behind the scenes that made her business a success in order for me (and the others in our class) to thrive. She lives "A rising tide lifts all boats". Over the course of 7 straight days, we talked about target markets, demographics, copy, sales pages, email sales, productivity, business systems, pricing, you name it. I came away with takeaways that are applicable, timely and tailored.  The best part? I can do this all over again, every month for a year! Genius model, don't you think?

The family feel she fostered from the very beginning of the intensive, gave me a place to share my pain points in a secure, confidential forum and gain clarity around my new business. I can't recommend it enough and wish you could have been with me.

One of the larger takeaways was my email subscriber opt-in. We discussed, live, with other people listening (eek!), how I manage my email list. I was honest, and said that I just send an RSS feed whenever I post. I don't have to think about it. And that's the problem. Basically, getting someone's email address is like receiving a key to their private home. Every time you walk into their home you can make it memorable, or you can just show up with whatever you have. Should you be intentional about your visit and think about the people who live in that house? Or are you just ticking the box? 

That was a real paradigm shift for me.  Going forward, the email subscriber list will be intentional, thoughtful and useful to you . If you sign up for the VIP List, you will get my Top 7 Tips to Create a Successful Online Community. After that, you will receive tips from me, not shared on the blog. This means that whatever I come across in my content curation for the week, will be shared with you. I won't be emailing the RSS feed to my blog. I want to build a relationship with you and provide value while respecting the time you have.  While the "freebies" page has been removed, I know you'll love the tips I share with you going forward. 

Speaking of which, I have to get to sending an email to all of my VIPs!

I'm curious, how do you set up your email subscriber list? Is it an RSS feed, with no personalization from you, or do you send something specific, just to them, on a schedule? Why? You know I love the why behind things, so share in the comments!  

Automation Versus Intention When do you automate and when are you intentional on social media? This post talks specifically about email subscriber lists via @faithfulsocial

This post contains affiliate links. Thanks for supporting Faithfully Social!

Sorry, Not Sorry

VlogCristina Comment

It's Thursday and that means, another Thoughts on Thursday vlog linkup with my dear friend Jen from JVKom Chronicles. I was going to chat about other things as you'll see.

Do you say sorry too much? Not enough, or don't know when? I am sure this affects relationships, especially marriages because it has for me. Check out the vlog for more thoughts on apologies and how powerful they are for you and your relationships. @faithfulsocial

So let's get to it.

I should add though, that it's important to be humble. Humility always wins. Always try to give people the benefit of the doubt, especially when things get heated. But if you turn a corner and someone bumps into you, don't just give a sorry away. That implies you did something wrong. Be intentional about what you are sorry for and what you don't make excuses for. In this example, "excuse me" works, and you don't walk away having given your subconscious and self esteem a ding. Trust me, that's what happens. Then, like weeds you're sorrying all over the place. STAHP it. <-- tough love.

So here's what I'd like to try today, share with me on social media via Twitter, Instagram, Facebook on my page, what have you, instances of where you say sorry, but probably shouldn't. For my extremists (like me) out there, shout out moments when you should have been sorry, but were too stubborn to say it, let's use #sorrynotsorry. This should be fun!

In the meantime, be #faithfullysocial. See you next week!

Do you say sorry too much? Not enough, or don't know when? I am sure this affects relationships, especially marriages because it has for me. Check out the vlog for more thoughts on apologies and how powerful they are for you and your relationships. @faithfulsocial
JVKom Chronicles

11 Simple Ways to Be an Awesome Twitter Superstar

Social Media, TwitterCristina Comment

"I want to become a Twitter professional by the end of May!" That's what Mary of Sometimes Martha Always Mary said when she reached out and asked me if I had any how-to videos to recommend. Well, I'm more of a list gal myself, so I pulled this listicle together of how I managed to get my following to grow 530+ since the end of February. Why the end of February? That's when I actually started tracking it.  

For 5 extra tips (and free tools) related to these 11 simple ways, sign up for my newsletter and gain access to all of the secret tips and tricks I have there for this post and others. 

11 Simple Ways to Be an Awesome Twitter Superstar. Mary asks me how she can get be a Twitter professional in a month. I share my twitter tips and tricks for how I grew my following 530+ followers since the end of February! @faithfulsocial

1. What do you blog about? This is always one of my first questions when I start working with clients. This sets the foundation for everything from content you curate, blog brainstorming sessions and branding. The whole kit and caboodle. I've heard many bloggers say, "I don't know what I blog about" or "I blog about random stuff". You just think you don't know, or that what you post is random. In a lot of cases, "random" means "I didn't plan". Set aside some time and write down a list of 10 things you can write about passionately, all day. Pare that down to 3-5 categories if you're just starting out or 5-7 categories if you're a more experienced blogger. 

2. Fill out your profile. By fill out, I mean fill out.

  • Add your location. Even if you're a little worried about stalkers, just add the general area, like largest city you're closest to.
  • Add a profile picture. Please use the same profile picture across all your platforms + blog. Don't make your readers work to decipher if you with a Kentucky Derby hat on is the same you with your gal pals on a Saturday night.
  • Add a header. Your header should be on brand in the same or similar look as your blog header. Even if it's just the name of your blog in your brand colors, that's perfectly fine.
  • Add a brief bio. You don't want to stuff. This is not welcoming: Cat-lover. coffee drinker. Likes cheese. That can be anyone. You want to stand out. Need help? Head here, here and here

What we're going for here, is to make it easier on your readers always and in all ways. Can you tell I love that show? 

3. Create lists based on your niches. Remember step #1? I told you, it's everything. I focus on social media, blogging + branding. You better believe that I have lists based on those topics. Some of those lists are private (looking at competitors to steal like an artist) and others are public, like my SITS Girls Twitter Glitter list. Why do I have that? When I follow a fellow SITS girl, and add them to a list, they are notified that they were added to my SITS Girls Twitter list. Tell me how that wouldn't make someone smile. Glitter fixes everything. Need help on how to create a Twitter list?

  • Click on Profile and Settings (hover over your profile picture).
  • Click on Lists.
  • Click on Create New Lists.
  • Fill out the pop up box.
  • When you see a profile that fits your list, click on the little gear icon on their profile and add to the appropriate list. 
  • Done!

4. Curate Content. As in get thee a Feedly account. I can't say it enough, go back to step #1. Create categories in Feedly based on those topics/ categories and any blogs that fit that category, add it. If you're into social media, like I am, lists like this one, help you to find blogs that are perfect for content curation. You can do this with any topic though with a Google search, just type "Best [Insert category here] of 2015" and add the feeds, follow them on Twitter (you can also follow them on all other social media too).  You'll need this to stick to an 80% other content versus 20% your content promotion strategy. You want to be viewed as the chick who knows her stuff, not just her own stuff. 

5. Follow your influencers.  You want to stay in the loop on those conversations that interest you. You'll also want to follow them as virtual mentors. This is huge. The only way to learn is to watch, absorb and emulate those elements of their strategy that fit your style. Not the other way around. What your influencers do are not a one size fit all for you. Take a little, and incorporate. Who are your influencers? That depends on the category. If you're a blogger, you'll look to profiles like The Nectar Collective,  Twelve Skip, Blogelina and The Blog Maven, for example. Remember that list you got from a Google search in step 4? You'll have a top ten to start with based on that!

6. Follow the people your influencers follow. This might seem weird. Why would you follow those people your influencers follow? Why should you care? I say, why don't you? You want to know who your influencers are following, so you can follow them to and see what makes them worthy (in your influencers eyes) to follow. This small shift in your strategy can really open your eyes to a larger industry based on your categories/topics you follow. 

7. Break up what you share. Vary your tweets with a mix of quotes, photos, video and just text. You want to target as many learning styles as possible. Some respond well to visuals, other to video and still others to just a plain article. Granted, tweets with images have better click through and RTs, but you don't want to share just images because of that. What you want to do is create a profile that's robust and dynamic, not a profile just looking out for analytics. However, that said, always use relevant hashtags. 

8. Join a Twitter chat or two. Twitter chats are a lot of fun. You get to mix and mingle with people while you're sitting at home in your pajamas. I don't know about you, but if I don't have to put make up on, that's the party I want to go to. I love the SITS Girls Twitter chat on Saturday mornings at 10AM ET, but if you're looking for a slower paced chat, you can join the chat they have on Monday's at 8PM ET. It's a lot of fun and you make friends, like *that* <---did you hear the snap of my fingers? Interested in some other social media chats? Head here for 33 other ones. Some other great ones are: 

  • AltSummit hosted on Wednesday's at 12PM ET using #AltChat
  • BlogElevated hosted on Wednesday''s at 10PM ET using #BlogElevated
  • Co -Schedule hosted on Thursdays at 4PM ET using #CoChat
  • House of Bliss hosted on Thursday's at 9PM ET using #blisschat 
  • Mack Collier hosts this one on Sunday's at 9PM using #BlogChat

9. Send a thank you tweet. Always thank anyone who retweets (RT) or shares your content, and use their first name in your thank you tweet (its the little things). This also shows people that you actually care enough to check out their profile to find their name and use it. If you get 8 shares or RT, great! Don't thank them all at the same time in one tweet. That shows you're lazy. Thank each share/RT individually. Also, don't send a series of 8 thank you's either, space them our using your automated app of choice (Hootsuite/Buffer).

10. Don't have your twitter feed widget on your blog. What if, in that Twitter feed widget on your blog, there's a super interesting article or inspirational quote scrolling by? Do you want to take your chances and have that reader that you worked so hard for just click away? Who knows if they'll be back? Have social icons that link to your profiles, but get rid of the Twitter feeds. This is more of a blogging tip, really. It came up in my brainstorming session for this post, so there you go.

11. Do not send Direct Messages (DMs) when someone follows you asking them to do something for you.  Similarly, do not tag images with random people just because you want a RT, thank you very much. Twitter allows users to tag up to 10 people on a Twitter image, without counting toward character count. I've heard complaints of how people are being tagged that have nothing to do with the image and the tagger is really just looking for a RT. This is like you walking down the street, and grabbing a stranger by the face and saying "Hey, look at me!"  Granted, there is no Twitter police to arrest you for being so aggressive, but you'll lose followers and kill your brand. I get that you want to get your message out there, but grabbing people by their Twitter-face won't cut it.

If I follow you, I don't need a DM saying that I should join you on Ibotta, or buy your book, or follow you on Ello. It's just bad form. How about we build a relationship before you ask me for a favor? Hmm? Kind of like in real life? If I want to follow you on Facebook, I will. I don't need a secret note passed to me or a nudge from you, Stranger Danger.

If you want access to 5 extra tips (and free tools) to kick this up to #faithfullysocial status, be sure to sign up for my newsletter. It's there, waiting for ya!

Have a question? Need help? Just ask, you may end up on my blog with tips and tricks curated just for you! 


11 Simple Ways to Be an Awesome Twitter Superstar. Mary asks me how she can get be a Twitter professional in a month. I share my twitter tips and tricks for how I grew my following 530+ followers since the end of February! @faithfulsocial

Are You at Capacity?

Vlog, Social MediaCristina Comment

I have never been shy about all the juggling I do. I share that aspect of my life, always. There are a lot of changes happening that I am really excited to share with you, and there's one thing that I keep telling myself lately.

Are You at Capacity? Have you ever even said that to yourself? What's the one thing you can do right now, to find balance and peace for just 10 minutes today? I have my thing. by @faithfulsocial

I've never said it before, but when something pops into my head and doesn't leave me alone, that means I have to listen to it. What is that? Watch and find out:

I am always surprised that I'm recording a vlog, and tickled. Have you noticed?

Want that news feed eradicator for Facebook? Here it is. I probably shouldn't share it as much as I do because removing the news feed means that you wouldn't see my Facebook updates either! But you have your notifications set up, right? So that you get a virtual high five from me when I post something? You can do that right now. Just click over to my Facebook page, Faithfully Social, and click on the like button, and make sure that "Get Notifications" is checked off, then download all the eradicators you want! See? I have it highlighted in blue, so you can see what I mean!

I mentioned the radio show I was on yesterday. It's going to be a monthly thang! Allison Gingras of A Seeking Heart on Real Life Radio asked me if I would be on once a month juse before we went live and I didn't even think! I just said yes! I'll chat with Allison about all things #faithfullysocial as in social media + blogging tips, tricks every last Monday of the month. For those of you without a calendar in front of you, that's June 22nd! It's a live show, so you can call in and ask me anything! I love that. 

Blessed is She is where I'll be contributing once monthly.. My first contribution (which is actually my second) will be published May 15th. Before Faithfully Social, I was a Catholic blogger writing about my faith. For the readers who miss that, this is for you! I wanted to be sure that I didn't lose the journey, remember? That's why I was so excited when I was able to jump back and contribute to this collaborative site.

The podcast I mention on the radio show and the vlog aka Building Bridges (Jenna, this is real now, I've put it out there!): Jenna + I are working on the website, getting our recordings together, mics, rss feeds, brainstorming, laughing, sitting next to weird dudes at Starbucks who bring their own Doritos, thinking we should record our phone calls, all those things. Someone who shall remain nameless <--- me! gave a ridiculously aggressive "go live" date of June 1st. That chick needs a talkin' to. So, pencil that date in, but don't hold us to it. 

Have you vlogged yet? What are you waiting for? It's super easy, and who doesn't want to be a goof on video? Do it with Jen, she's the one that pushed me to do it, and I love it! It's a link up, remember? 

JVKom Chronicles

In the meantime, be #faithfullysocial!

I have to walk away for 10 minutes, remember?

Are You at Capacity? Have you ever even said that to yourself? What's the one thing you can do right now, to find balance and peace for just 10 minutes today? I have my thing. by @faithfulsocial