How to Jump Hard into LinkedIn With Both Feet: Camille Trent

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

2020 has been a big year for LinkedIn. The social media platform now has more than 720 million users globally.

It has transformed into a platform dominated by content and connections rather than a place where HR professionals troll for talent and people look for new opportunities.

In short order, many people have decided to embrace LinkedIn as the social platform to drive their personal profiles and careers.

From doubling-down on the platform over the past seven months, I've seen first-hand the power of LinkedIn to drive my fractional CMO business.

I've made new connections with people around the world and had dozens of conversations, including Camille Trent, a brand and digital marketing specialist with Texas Citizens Bank.

I reached out to Camille because she has established an engaged following since jumping hard into LinkedIn in August. I want to learn first-hand about how someone leverages LinkedIn effectively.

You're listening to marketing spark. Thepodcast at delivers insight, tools and tips from marketers and entrepreneurs in the trenchesin twenty minutes more or less. If you're active on Linkedin, one ofthe biggest benefits is the ability to connect with people around the world. Acase in point is Camill Trent, a brand and digital marketing strategists with TexasCitizens Bank. So how does a marketer in Toronto me connect with a marketduring Colorado? Well, it's about linkedin. Camill has been writing some great content, so I reached out to re see if she wanted to appear onthe podcast, and here we are. Welcome to marketing spark, camill.Thank you. It's good. It's good to findly chat. I know I'vebeen an exchanging comments here and there on Linkedin, like you mentioned, soI'm glad we're able to do this. So let me start by asking youabout your linkedin experience. Like a lot of people, I suspect that youjumped harder on the platform recently. Maybe give some background and why you decidedto use linked in and what you're getting out of it. Probably a fewyears ago, when I realized that you could post on there. I didn'tactually do that at the time. I, you know, shared a few postshere and there, once every few months, and then this year Iwas like, you know, there's some there's something here like this, thislinkedin thing is a real deal. I start posting a little bit more,a little bit more, starting probably in January, so that I was goingfrom like three or four posts a month to a twelve posts a month,and then in August, August five, I did write down the day.I was I'm just going to jump all in on this. I'm just gonnapost once every day, and once I set that, I couldn't it's hardfor me to go back on it. It's a goal that I had formyself. So I did that and I started posting every day. And sonow it's been almost three months, not quite, of posting consistently. I'vegotten some some really good insights from that and I've also gotten to meet somereally great people. Source. Far as creating content on a consistent basis,I know is a writer. It's a...

...challenge and this is what I've trainedyou professionally. How do you keep writing content consistently? Give any tricks?How do you capture your ideas. How do you tell whether the content you'rewriting resonates? So you should write more of that and less of others?What's your approach? I can just go through my whole strategy, which Idon't know if you can even call it, call it a strategy, but thisis what I do. So throughout the day I just I think thenumber one thing is being open to everything being content or everything being copy.And so if you have that kind of open mindset of anything that you comeacross, could you could the way that you see it, like, theway that you interpret it in the world, that is your content, because someoneelse actually sees that differently. When I have an insight or something Iconsidered to be an insight, I'd write it down in Google keep, sobasically just a notes APP. What I like about will keep is if Ido want to write something more long form or if I need to kind ofhave it's an idea but it's not hammered out, then it actually shows upon the side of Google docs and so on. Google docs, you'll see, like Google, actually have it up right now. So you'll have you'llhave the little google keep APP right there and you actually have your tasks rightbelow that and you have your calendar. So it's all kind of like inone central place. So then if you prefer to kind of use a word, word documenting, word processing kind of thing, like a whole word docthen you can actually just pull in your notes from there. So that's kindof what I do to keep a running tab of my ideas and my thoughts. And usually what it ends up being is a headline, a headline,or maybe four lines if there's if I have four lines right off the bat, then it's a pretty good indicator that it's content. You know that there'sthere's something there because it's has legs. And then from there. Yeah,every night is actually when I do it. I started writing in the mornings aroundlike nine, but you know, I have a twenty one month oldand and I have a husband and so we have actually just been car pooling, so I take them to work every day and we do some day care, and so it was just a little too hectic to do it in themorning and so I decided, okay,...

I'll I'm just going to post atnight and whatever happens happens. If it kills my reach, that's fine.It didn't it actually ended up being about the same, if not better,when I started posting at night. And Yeah, and so my process isjust I look back through my notes, I kind of see which one I'mfeeling for the day and and then I kind of go with that as aprompt. Really, I think if you think about it, let me backup, if you think, if you think about it as being open toeverything being content, and I have a whole backstory on that, but basicallyI watched a documentary. It was called everything is copy, and it kindof just change change my world a little bit on how I saw copy andhow I thought about content marketing. So I do that and then I popopen my my notes, Google docs, and I see kind of what Iwant to riff on, essentially what topic I want to pick out and sortof riff on, and then I'll write something and I'll post it, usuallyaround like ten PM my time. So that's kind of my process. Now. As a writer, one of the things that you're looking for its flow, you're looking for inspiration, you're looking for your content to essentially be easy. You don't want it to be hard. One of the things I'm curious aboutis, given the fact that you're producing content on a consistently producing contenton a daily basis. How do you stop it from being an obligation?You look on Linkedin and there's a lot of people you got to write everyday and I can see people struggling. The Post gets shorter, the insightgets less interesting and it's almost like they're going through the motion. So howdo you avoid that kind of situation? Yeah, that's that's a really goodquestion, because I feel like I was getting close to burn out because itdoes take some time away from from family or just fun things. I mean, you're already having your work day and then this is just essentially more work. The key for me is to not think about that way. So whenI when I've very first started it, my plan wasn't to get leads orto to generate business. My plan was just to experiment with it and tolearn the platform, because I knew that once I did that, that onethat's fun for me anyways as a marketer. But to like I could share thoseinsights with with members of our bank,...

...it would help me with the companypage that I was that I was working on and on top of that, I could share it with clients because I do do some freelancing on theside. I knew that there was a big enough why that I needed tofigure that out. And then as I went my I realized kind of howmuch I missed copywriting specifically. So I do some copywriting for for my job, but I also do a little bit of everything in terms of marketing andbranding. So it was nice to kind of have my own writing time ifI just thought about it as journaling. But essentially, and I've said before, that a lot of my post or actually just notes to myself, likethings that things that I know, but I needed to kind of reposition itto myself to get the motivation to really do it, kind of like hardtalk to myself. They're kind of like tenants, things that we know aboutmarketing but that I kind of need to position or pitch to myself or maybepitch to marketing marketers in general, that that this is a good idea.You know, like to keep with it because it is really hard with marketing, both with Linkedin, like you mentioned, and then just marketing in general.It's a lot. It's in a consistency game right, so it's momentumand its consistency. Think it can. You can't get really down if youdon't see those results right away. You have to love it. I justdecided I was I was only going to write about things that I wanted towrite about, and so I did kind of pick some core tenants of,you know, branding, copywriting, marketing in general, but marketing from acustomer experience standpoint, and I think that that has kind of like separated someof my content because I really try and look at it, look at thingsand look at the world and look at marketing from a consumer perspective, likenot from not from a marketing this perspective. And so are we making it easierto buy from us, or are we making it easier to like usas marketers? So I when I picked those topics and then when I thoughtabout it as a copywriting exercise, like this is a way for me toget better at copywriting and also to get better at consistency. Those are twohuge things in marketing. So I really...

...just thought about it as a wayfor me to grow. As you focused on leveraging linkedin and using linkedin andproviding insight, have you got any feedback for your employer? Do they lookat what you're doing in a positive light. Do they think that it may bedistracting you? I'm curious about what that's been like over the last fewmonths. Yeah, I mean so I don't take up any of my actualworktime to do my own personal posts and so so there hasn't been any anycommentary on that specifically, although I've gotten some positive feedback in that. SoI work for a Community Bank and we were were in the PPP loans rightand so and that was a big deal for small businesses. Being able toshare that message on Linkedin and on facebook. That had a lot of share abilitypower just to know how hard that these these bankers were working and allthe extra hours they were doing to try and get more small businesses funded andbe able to kind of stay alive and also thrived during that time. Ipublished a lot of that stuff through our linkedin page and that got some prettygood exposure in the area. So people were excited about that. I thinkkind of once you see it working or once you see the potential with it, that's pretty cool. Another part of that is the SPA office themselves.I think I tagged the SBA district office in a post that we did.That was about the DOS and don'ts of using your PPP loans and that,yeah, that generated some good engagement. But most importantly, the the districtoffice reached out to our CEO and asked if they could actually use the sliderthat we put together on Linkedin for the webinars that they were they were holdingfor small business owners. I think once you see it in that light,because obviously our team was pretty excited about that, and being able to getthat extra exposure, exposure to our bank, and having it be from a piecethat was really just meant to be helpful that we originally created for ourown customers, seeing those kind of results, I think, definitely got them excitedabout it. As far as my own my own personal brand, I'vebeen lucky enough to have some really good,...

...really good bosses and mentors. Theyare excited for me to just do my own things since, especially sinceit was on my on my own time. But but honestly, sort of aside note is the fact that because I've grown a few followers, nota ton, but because I've grown my personal brand a little bit, itactually does get gives some extra exposure to the bank because when I go andI like those posts. Then it shows it to more people. So there'sthose things. And then the last thing I'll mention is when we've gotten afew more employees, especially some of the younger employees, they had already seenour linkedin content and seeing our facebook content. So I think that kind of warmedthem up to us being like slightly more modern but maybe than some ofthe other banks out there. And one of our other employees had started postinglike every day or every other day, and that gives me an opportunity to, you know, interact with those posts and like those to give them alittle bit extra exposure. So it's an algorithm and it all kind of likefeeds itself. That's kind of Linkedin is very smart about how they've done things, about getting people to use the platform that way, because it all feedsinto each other. But but yeah, I know they they're happy about aboutLinkedin in general and I think happy about the exposure, the tiny bit ofexposure that like my extra personal brand is able to bring to it. Soit's been when when all around. One of the things I want to talkto you about, aside from Hadle everage Linkedin in your experience on linked in. Is your thoughts on copywriting, because a lot of your content, alot of your posts, are focused on how to be a better copywriter andyou've alluded to the fact that you're talking to talk and walking the walk.Why is copywriting gate getting more attention these days? I mean, there's alot of high profile marketers that are but I believe are sit giving a lotof copywriting one on one advice. Why is it happening? Do you thinkthe copywriting is underrated or undervalued? It's funny that you should mention that becauseI did just post a few days ago that the copy is copywriting is overrated, and it was a little bit of a hook headline because it ended alittle bit differently than that. But my thoughts are basically that when I wentto school, actually graduated in advertising and...

...then copywriting specifically. So so therewas a copywriting program that I took in school and it was kind of gearedtoward the big agency life. So I did read all of those books andtalk to, you know, the marketers at big companies, or the creativesrather, at big agencies. So I kind of had that background. Soit was really funny to see now that that marketing has kind of jumped onit. Obviously copywriting is part of marketing, but historically it's been kind of withinthe creative department within agencies. But when when I was graduating and therewere recruiters over, one of the more interesting things is that it seems likeeveryone in my class wanted to wanted to go to agency, like that waskind of like what we're set up to do and we're excited to do.But right around that time there was a shift where there were a lot ofcompanies bringing creative in house. I'm so bringing copywriting in house and bringing designersand house, and so I remember there being an apple, an apple recruiterthere, and that's what she was saying was, you know that they aremoving everything in house, like historically they'd been with shy at day like that'salmost famously so that they've been with them, but I'd started taking more of thatwork in house and I think because of that that shift toward in housecreative more in house marketing, that more marketers have had to learn or atleast understand copywriting. So that's, I think, kind of the background onit and kind of why it's it's become this. It's become, yeah,almost overrated, like I mentioned. What I meant by that is that peoplehave been talking marketers im and talking how, you know, they wish that theyhad learned copywriting early on and this and that, but it's almost becomethis weight on copywriters shoulders of like, okay, we know that copywriting doesa lot of the heavy lifting, so we're expecting you to do a lotof the heavylifting, when really it's a team effort. Because I really reallyadmire the designers that I've that I've worked with in agency and then freelancing andthen also in house when I work with agencies. So design is really importantas well, and I think that that's been underrated at this point, likeit was almost like design was overrated, copyrighting was underrated and now it's kindof like shifted, and so I think...

...design is still really important. Ithink just having an overall strategy, like having your positioning figured out. Workingwith a lot of small and medium businesses, they don't always have their positioning figuredout and they kind of just want sometimes they want want clever one linersor, you know, just clever copywriting like that. Kind of just wantyou to fill in the blanks when really like you need it to be.You need to have you need to have figured out the strategy ahead of timeand have a good product and have some other support, like with design andwith distribution. I haven't even gotten started on distribution. But it's not likeyou can just make good content and that's it. There's there's a few otherthings that go into it. So honestly, I would say that copywriting is alittle bit overrated at this point. I mean, I think that makesit makes a huge, huge difference, but I don't think that you canjust hire a hire a great copywriter and that's it. You got to havelike the systems in place first. One final question. If you are amarketer and you want to improve your copywriting skills some give me, can yougive me some basic advice? I think that the main thing that companies missout on is there's an opportunity to differentiate and a lot of times they decideto play it safe. I think that any time that you have an opinionor something that you believe strongly in, that you should lean into that.I think in general that that is great for brands because it's more it's morerelatable. It's more believable. I think when people try and be on thefence and not offend anyone, then they don't get any fans that way either. They can't have both. You have to be willing to not upset people, but you have to be willing to not please everyone, because that's theway that you are going to please the people that matter most, the peoplein your ICP that are actually going to buy from you. Ultimately, Ithink not chasing vanity metrics and really just chasing good content. And I Imean personally. I don't think that I am the I don't think copywriters arethe only ones that know good content.

I think this is something I've beentrying to preach a lot too, is that most people know what good contentlooks like based on the things that they like in the things that they shareand really the media that they consume when they're not at worth, the theTV, the movies. That's good content and good copywriting. So a coupletips that I can give is the headlines obviously super important. I'll talk alittle bit about about linkedin specifically, but but the with Linkedin you need agood starting line. A lot of times it seems to be better when it'sshort, but it doesn't have to be. The next two lines really need toget you to keep reading the next lines. So I know everyone's heardthat a lot is at the first line needs to get you to read thenext line, but that's that's a big part of it. I kind ofalso started thinking about the headline as the thesis. So if I think aboutposts or whatever I'm creating as a an essay, almost as a almost asa persuasive essay, then then the first part needs to be kind of yourthesis or your abstract. I've been thinking about this a lot because my husbandis in immunology, is a research scientist, so he does grant. It's justkind of similar, right, like you should have the most important stuffup at the top. That's how as a newspaper, that's how it isin science. That's how it doesn't copywriting. You should have your most important statementup at the top. It should build, build into something, shouldgive you a reason to keep reading, but also have enough structure in themiddle where it's not pure text, like it's nice to break it up withbullet points or at least short sentences. Short sentences are better in general.But to back up, I think it's just have something to say, likehave something that you believe in strongly and that you know that your target audiencewill care about. And you can find that out based on what they're talkingabout. You know what they're talking about on other social networks, what theirinterests are. I mean those things will tell you what they're interested in.So being able to relate to them, committing, like committing to the nichethat you have, committing to a human voice, not not a corporate voice, like committing to the the style that your customer wants to see. Ithink Gong does a really good job of...

...this on their linkedin company page andjust in their copywriting in general. is they sound like. You can tellit's written by a human, and I'm saying the same thing from from lemonade. A thing is what's called with I think it helps you by homes,but it can tell that's written by human. And I just stumbled across their pageand I immediately liked the brand and I like knew nothing about it,like I didn't know if their product was any good, but I knew thatI like felt an affinity for it because I could feel the copywriter on theother end of it, like I could feel like I feel a connection tothat person. That's what what's about, this connection with copyrwarding. Camille.Where can people find you to learn more about you and and consume your content? I mean obviously linkedin. If you if you send me a DM,then I'll try, try and respond as fast as I can. That's probablythe the best place. I'll stop that. I have some emails and things,but I think you can find that on Linkedin as well well. Thanks, Camille, and thanks everyone for listening to another episode of marketing spark.If you enjoyed the conversation, leave a review and subscribe by Itunes or yourfavorite podcast APP. If you like what you'R heard, please rate it.For show notes of today's conversation and information about Camille, visit marketing spark DOTCOslash blog. If you have questions, feedback, would like to suggest aguest or want to learn more about how I help me to be companies asa fractional CMO consultant advisor, send an email to mark at marketing sparkcom.I'll talk to you next time.

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