Welcome to this week’s Creator’s Corner, where I answer your questions
because I’m too lazy to think of my own content ideas to help you kick ass online.
- My daily routine as a creator
- The best time to release a digital product
- How to handle engaging with your audience (and a dirty little secret about some big time creators)
Let’s get cooking.
A Quick Note...
One of the best ways to make money as a writer is through freelancing.
I failed when I tried last year.
But after speaking with my friend Paul French, I realised my mistake:
Paul made 6 figures in his first year of freelancing. The best bit? He did it without working crazy hours, AND he still had the flexibility to travel with his young family.
Now he’s put his experience into a step-by-step roadmap so you can do the same.
It covers everything you need to get paid well, including offer building, landing clients (with great retainers), and more. He covers every mistake I made – so it’s a solid investment considering the potential return.
Francis Oleh asked:
What does your routine look like?
It's a bit of a running joke that when you go full time online, you'll fill that time creating the perfect routine.
Of course, that doesn't exist.
But I'll keep going.
So let me explain an average day now, then finish with a few notes.
(read no further if you have kids or real responsibilities).
I wake up without an alarm at around 5.30am. Shower (no longer cold, I’m getting soft). Then I’ll do mobility work for 10 minutes, which I hate, but I’ve got more metal in my body than Wolverine, and I’d quite like to be functional at fifty.
I then meditate for 10 minutes using Sam Harris’s Waking Up app.
One (massive) downside of being an ‘influencer’ is you are constantly connected to artificial dopamine. The cost is mental clarity, so you need to win it back.
Next up, I’ll either journal or handcopy writing while I do what we Brits do best:
Journalling and copywork are great for warming up.
I’ll do 20 minutes, then dive into writing with 3 hours of deep work - split into 50 minutes focus, 10 minutes rest.
I don’t like 25/5 because short breaks pull me out the flow. After 3 hours, or when I finish working, I’ll hit the gym. That’s usually around 10-10.30am.
Lunch, I read or watch YouTube.
I used to schedule my afternoon too. But a lot of incredible entrepreneurs swear by unstructured time, and success leaves clues. So now, I wing it.
I’ll either dive into a project (like building my new product, which is shaping up nicely - click this link to join 373 people on the waiting list), go for a walk, hop on calls with interesting people, or read.
At 7pm I’ll stop to unwind. If I work any later, I can’t sleep. Business is too damn exciting. Then it’s rinse and repeat.
It might sound boring, but I love it. I’ve always been a fan of regimented routine (I appreciate I sound like Christian Bale in American Psycho).
A few notes:
I only have 3 hours per week for calls and clients so I can focus on writing. This is a recent change and feels amazing.
I don’t do Monday mornings. Don’t tell money Twitter but I still enjoy a bit of debauchery on the weekends, so I’ll keep Monday pretty chilled. But I will work Saturday.
I also don’t check social media or emails between 7.30pm and 11am. This is life-changing. The best thing you can do for your mind is disconnect from everyone else’s.
And if the sun’s shining, I f*ck it all off and go for a walk. Because what’s the point in freedom if you don’t stop to enjoy it?
(Trust me, escape your 9-5. You’ll never be happier, healthier, or more fulfilled when you're in control of your day).
Ollie Emberson asked:
When's the best time to release a product?
Ollie and I hopped on a call recently. His business is going great, and he’s releasing a product soon. I figured it would be useful to share our discussion if you want to do the same.
There’re 3 important factors to consider:
- Have you solved a problem?
- Do you have traffic?
- Do you have trust?
Let’s unpack each.
The mistake I see often is creators build products before they’ve worked with people. Bad move. You think your systems are great until you try to teach them. You think your ideas are good until someone else implements them.
Don’t take it personally - I've been there too.
Here’s the issue.
Products (especially your first) are not just revenue-building assets. They’re reputation-building assets. The latter is MUCH more important. The person who pays you $50 will likely pay you 10-1000x more.
Your approach to business will change dramatically when you understand those who buy once, buy twice.
February 28th 2023
If your product sucks, you’ll churn through customers like I used to churn through candy (I was a chubby wee kid). Start with people, then productize when proven.
Next up, traffic.
There's not much point in releasing a product to the void. This means you need to build your audience (I released mine at 20,000 followers) or pay for attention (ads, retweets, newsletter sponsors etc).
This plays into the previous two points. People need to trust you can help them. If you lack authority, get some. Work with clients to get results. Start a weekly newsletter to deliver value.
Prove you're worth investing in, and people won't see you as an expense.
Pradeep Chaudhary asked:
How do you engage with fans who comment on your tweets, and what’s the best strategy to add/get value from comments in an efficient way?
How much you interact with your followers is up to you. I made an early decision do it a lot. People follow people, and I wanted to show how much I respect my audience’s attention. Like Paul Graham says, an early founder should focus on doing the things that don’t scale.
But there’s a cost.
It’s easy to spend all day on social and feel productive.
But building an audience without a business is like binge-watching Netflix. It’s fun, but overall, pretty pointless.
Engaging is secondary to building skill.
I used to do it during lunch and in between patients. Now I do it during the gym. Unfortunately I can’t keep up anymore. So I’ll try to like everything at a minimum and reply to every email instead.
On engaging well…
Basic psychology applies. Thank people often. Use their names. If you have shared interests, express them. If they ask a question, answer well.
It might feel pointless to go the extra mile, but you're not just interacting with one person.
The world is watching - behave accordingly.
(There’re large accounts that outsource their replies to a VA who copy-paste generic drivel. I won’t name names, but if it feels braindead - stop giving them your time. They’re not giving it to you. Reply to me instead 😏)
Finally, start a document saving every question you come across. That’s your future content.
And if you write a reply you’re proud of, schedule it as a tweet a week later.
If you have a question, please reply to this email and I’ll dive into it in a future edition of Creator’s Corner
Kieran's Killer Resource of the Week
Cole Shafer is one of the most entertaining copywriters I read, and he has a great blog post called ‘The psychology of selling’.
Even if you’re not a marketer, understanding human behaviour will do incredible things for your business. This is a great breakdown of how incentives impact our decisions.
A Question for You...
Why do people come to you for advice?
The key to personal branding is to amplify your positive qualities. But it can be hard to work out what those are, so why not let your friends work it out for you?
The advice people want from you is the advice your audience will love too.
You'll get my creator rulebook - 10 ideas I follow religiously that will help you build your business.
Keep writing your way to freedom,
If you’d like more help, I’ve got your back:
If you’d like more help, I’ve got your back:
And if you've got a moment, I'd love to hear what you thought of this edition of Digital Freedom.
Send me a quick message - I reply to every email!