Christine McShane

How To Start A Conversation With Content With Christine McShane


TRANSCRIPT AUTOMATICALLY GENERATED Diane: Hey, Hey, today's guest. Christine McShane is a copywriter and content strategist who helps entrepreneurs use organic content marketing to attract, and pre-qualify their ideal clients. If you've ever felt overwhelmed and frustrated with content creation her, take on it might change your mind. Hey Christine. Welcome to the Christine: show. Hi Diane. Thank you so much for having me. I'm excited to be Diane: here. So let's click things off for the quick intro to you and your business. Christine: Great. So my name's Christine McShane. I run Christine McShane creative. And I help small businesses grow their reach and grow their visibility and use content marketing essentially to attract and pre-qualify best fit clients without paid ads. So nobody wants to spend time on discovery calls that are going nowhere. I don't have sales calls anymore. I have best fit calls. So I use my content marketing very strategically, and I do this with my. So that by the time someone calls you, they're 80% sold. Diane: Okay. We all need a little bit of that. Right. It becomes then I guess, more them knowing they wanna work for you and just wanting some details and some reassurance and you a hundred percent more interviewing them to see whether they're a good fit to work with. You. Christine: Exactly. Exactly. And I feel very passionately. If you do your content marketing correctly or strategically, I guess there's no bad way to do it. You are having conversations with people. Well, you don't even know it like you are. You are putting yourself out there genuinely authentically. You're having conversations with them, [00:02:00] asynchronously using whatever platform it could be social. It could be email. It could be your. they're sort of interviewing you if they're interested and then the way you interview them is just by being yourself. And if you put out your passion, your vibe, your brand, and they respond to it, you've just prequalified them then once they call you, it's like, Hey, I've been following you. And I really like what you're doing. I think we could work together. Now, let's just see if all the pieces click, like, you know, the pricing and the scheduling. It's like, it's really down to the, the details at that point. Diane: Okay. So that sounds lovely, but you touch, you touched on something there that I just wanna point out where you were like, you are putting out content. So I feel like content is a source of overwhelm for many of us, right. A hundred percent. So. When I look at the cost benefit analysis and I go, account nerdy, I get what you're saying that yes, content is pre-qualifying people, but the amount of time and energy, I mean, our content is like everywhere. You're having to do reels and blogs and, and all the things, Why should we persevere in content versus just keeping that discovery? Mm. Christine: Okay. So that, that's a great question. So first let me address one thing. I don't think you have to do all of the things. And so one of the key points that I, that I said was doing it genuinely and authentically, and, and I think authentic, we, we, this word is thrown around a lot, but I'll, let me sort of give you my interpretation of it. I think you pick and choose the platforms that feel good to you. I think you pick and choose the modes that feel good to you. So, when you're thinking about time. Right? So like, well, do I wanna load up on discovery calls or do I wanna load up spend that time on content marketing? That's a decision everybody has to make on their own what that balance is, but I am going to suggest that you think [00:04:00] about when you're, when you're coming up with that decision. That when you have a one to one discovery call, it is one to one. It is not leveraged, right? So it is powerful. There is absolutely nothing like a one to one call hands down, nothing like it. We're human beings. Right. But it's not leveraged. And so when you're putting out content that is leveraged. So if I create a video. I just did one yesterday and I looked and I looked at the views and who comments and who liked it. It was so fascinating to me. Right. I didn't know that that person followed me. Right. Or they just consumed a little sound bite for me. I had a little touchpoint with them. I had a little connection with them and I had it with multiple people in a 15 second video that I posted, cuz I wanted it to be my Instagram story. So it was 15 seconds. So you have to strike a balance. Your one to one meaningful talks and then you are leveraged. And so here's really how I came upon this. Diane, when I first started in business, I've been in business for 12 years. You, you get your business cards and you're like, I, here I am, I'm gonna do business and great. Now, where am I gonna find clients and customers? And so I networked a lot because I had a lot of time on my. Right. I had some clients filtering in and I was doing all working on my business. I had all this time and I was in all these networking groups and it was fabulous cuz I love networking and I love people. But then the business started to grow and I started to fill my calendar with actual work and I thought, I, I, okay now I have to start making some decisions. I can't be everywhere. I can't network 40 hours a week and work 40 hours a week or what, whatever that. And really started paying attention to how do I network in a leveraged way? And so what you and I were [00:06:00] talking about is using content marketing to network when you can't do it in person. So I'm not saying never have discovery calls, and I'm not saying never network in person. Absolutely. That's one piece of the pie, but. If you can network with people. So sometimes I'll go to a networking event and I will connect with them on social. Maybe at maybe it's LinkedIn is their jam, or we connect on Instagram or I sign up for their email list. Now I have a way to connect with them. That's not so heavy and intense. Right. And I don't have to carve out a half an hour conversation with them. I can just have, I can, I can read what they're up to and I can comment on it or I can deliver content to them and they can say, thanks for post. That's 15 seconds out of their day. That's not heavy. That's very light touch, but you're still building that relationship and building it with multiple people at one time. Diane: So I can see the connection when like you've met someone in a networking thing, I'd be like, Hey, I'm Diane, it's nice to meet you. What do you do? is what I do. And it kind of flows into a conversation. How do we replicate that flow with content versus being that person at a networking thing who like you have 10 minutes to talk and they talk for nine and a half. And then remember to, go, oh, and, and what do you do? Right. Right. Sometimes the content marketing can feel a bit like that. You're just like fire hosing at them. I don't understand how content marketing thing gets to be networking in a two way. Street, Christine: I'm actually glad you asked that question because I think that's a big mistake that people constantly make. So I, I, sometimes I write content for people and I've had more than one person come to me and say, can you just write my con, just write my content and put it out there. And I don't actually want to be on the platform. I don't wanna actually interact with people. And I say to them, that's half the power.[00:08:00] So, yes, I could. I could help you put out the best, most compelling content, but you also, it also needs to segue into a conversation. If I send out an email to my email list and someone replies, that means they wanna engage, like I've struck a cord I've, I've touched on something that they wanna talk. and they, if they hit reply, then now I, now I've opened the door to a conversation and that's organic. Like they really wanna talk about this subject. It's not me sliding into their DMS going, hi, what do you do? You know, how's your day? What are you struggling with in your business? Like those tactics are just so cold. This is your saying, I'm talking about this. Who wants to talk about it with me? And then at various points, people are gonna read it and go, I, I want to talk about it. Thanks for, thanks for sharing. and so that's when you can organically engage. Sometimes I will say this, not everybody will do that. Two people said this to me recently. I've been following you for about two years and they never once like. My posts, they never commented. And they never replied to my emails, not a one. So some people will lurk, like, so you're sort of like having this conversation and, and not everybody wants to engage. But it is a, I guess you'd how about this? Diane? It's it's sort of a conversation starter, right? So you're putting it out there. Like I had this thought about this, or I learned this, let me share it with you. Or this happened to a client of mine, or this happened to me. I wanna share that with you. And then you're inviting because you're posting and distributing. You're inviting a conversation. and how great is that? Yeah. Diane: Yeah, that makes sense. That makes sense. So it is turning it into not just, Hey, this is what I thought, but what do you think in return? So if we continue along that vein, yeah. What content do you see that does really well for this kind of [00:10:00] networking vibe to generate people, responding or encourage people responding Christine: that's a really good question. And I think it depends on what you're doing and the platform, so let me, let me pause for a second and talk about why you might be on social media. Why do we. Go on social media. And I think human beings generally go onto social media to be amused, to be entertained, to be educated or to connect. Those are kind of like the four reasons why I pick up my phone and log onto anything. Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, the whole thing. Like I'm looking for those four things. That's my motivation. So if you can hit on those four things. Obviously, probably not all at the same time, but observe what is happening on the platform and what, and what you think your ideal client might be wanting to engage with. And then see if you can participate in some way. Right. So Pinterest people are usually on Pinterest because they're looking for information. They're looking to be educated. So I might go onto Pinterest because I'm looking for recipes cuz I'm having a barbecue and I want something new. I might be looking for home decor. I might be looking for career tips. I might be looking for any, anything, right. So that's a little more education based. Whereas if I get on TikTok, I probably wanna beta. right. So if you think about the platform and think about delivering one of those four things to your ideal client, Diane: yeah. Do you have a content pet peeve? So we've talked a lot about like, here is what you want your content to be doing. Here's how you wanna show up. Is there something that when you see people do it and their content, you're just like, oh no, Christine: I have a ton. Diane. my previous peeve. Oh, my previous pee. Gosh. All right. Let's see. So, one of my pet peeves is yes, number one is when they don't want to engage back [00:12:00] when it's, when it feels like this megaphone coming from one, and it's just one directional and you can kind of feel that I don't know what it is about it, but you can feel when they're not really looking for a conversation. It's this sort of one way street. So that is a pet peeve of mine. Or when it's, when it's used just to sell and not to serve. And I think people can see right through that. So we all have that connection or friend that just put sales posts up all the time, or every email is just on their email list is just selling. and it's a turn off. It's a turn off, but the expression goes, nobody wants to be sold to, but everybody loves to buy. Right. And so if you can think of it as serving, instead of selling and some of the best marketers do that, they're out there constantly giving away, like talking about it, educat. And then what do you do when you listen to them? And they're educated by them? Like, oh my God, I need to know more. So let me buy their product or let me work with them. You hook them in. And I, I don't mean that manipulatively, but you've gotta serve you. Can't just go out there and just be like, bye bye. Bye bye from me. And sometimes you are going to serve people that are never gonna buy from you. And that is okay. You're serving Diane: and. I know there's a lot of different places that we could be on content. And obviously the place that we always come back to is our kind of owned platform being our email list. And I know that you have a resource that people can use to help them expand their own platform. Yes. Do you wanna talk a little about what that is? Christine: Sure. So I so to go back to the original comment that you had made. [00:14:00] Oh, my goodness I have doing your content takes up so much of your time, right? And should you, how, how much time really, should you be allocating to this? And this is a huge struggle. And so not everybody wants to hire a team. Not everybody can afford to hire a team. There's all sorts of reasons why you might be doing your own content marketing. Writing everything from scratch is daunting. You've gotta come up with all these fantastic ideas. You've gotta be witty. You've gotta be funny. Has to be done well and inspired. And that's really hard to do on demand. That's overwhelming. So I have templates monthly templates, brand new templates each month, where you basically can fill in the blank of these templates. And at the same time, make it your own. And not only does it include templates, but I also include my very own exclusive stock photo. And flat lays because I am a photographer too, and I can't help myself. I'm a creative and I just like to do all the things, it's called content for busy people, because I'm just like you, I don't have a ton of time. I've got a family, I've got a business. I've gotta work in the business. I have to work on the business. It's hard to stay inspired. It's hard to write great content on demand. I'm a writer. I do it for a profession. By the time I'm done writing my client's content, I'm like I'm wiped and doing my own is tough. So these little templates are just a little cheat for you. So you not staring at that blank page. Diane: I'll be sure to link that in the show notes. So to finish up, I have two questions that I ask of all my guests. First one, love it. What is your number one lifestyle boundary for your business? Christine: Ooh, that's a good one. My number one lifestyle boundary for my business is that my kids come first. And so if I have to take time, For taking them to the doctor or to, you know, they have a [00:16:00] special event that, that always, I block off my calendar, that's my priority. And you know, I don't work in the ER I'm I write, I work in content though. There is no real content emergency. So , you know, I kind of have to remind myself like, it's okay to say, you know what? I can. I'm not gonna take a call on that day because that day I'm taking care of someone in my family. Diane: I assume you set that up when you start working with a client Christine: It's sort of organic Diane, because the way I set up my schedule. Is is just sort of naturally that way. It's not like I have to go into the client and say, oh, I'm never gonna do that. That's not how it goes. It's just, here are my working hours. Here is the process to set up calls with me here is what happens if either you or I need to reschedule because honestly, the people that I work with, they are the exact same way. They have families. They might be caring for aging parents. They might have children, they might have fur babies. They're people, they're humans. And if they call me and they say, I can't make it because this happened, then yeah, go do that. This is just business and we're humans first, so it's okay. Go, go take care of your business. Diane: Fabulous. Okay. Finally, what is the worst piece of cookie cutter advice you've been given as an entre? Christine: Oh, the worst piece of advice. Oh, let me think about that. Tagging other businesses. Just to get visibility or, you know, tagging other people just so that your post, this is on social media, just so that your post gets visibility. Sometimes they'll say, what do you think? Like, they'll try to. Cover it up that they really want you to see it, but really what it is, is an attempt [00:18:00] to reach your op tap into your network because they know if they tag you, then your friends will see it. And I don't think it's effective. And I think it comes off as exactly what it it is. Yeah. It just feels non-organic. Diane: I get it an awful lot in Instagram. And I report them as spam. Yeah. When it happens and then remove myself from the tag, but it is irritating to me because you've just, I've had to spend five minutes dealing with you as a problem. I agree with you. That one is very, very slimy. Christine: It is it just, and it feels gross and it's like, it's obvious, like you are trying to use other people's networks now. I, I don't think there's anything wrong with leveraging other people's networks, but it's gotta be a mutually agreed upon thing. Diane: All the post is actually about the person. Like you were going of, I of course just read so, and so's most amazing book course. And should all go and get it. And by all means then tag, we're just talking of about the like randomly tagging, I don't know, Gary V in your post. Yeah. About your new optin Christine: right. Exactly. Exactly. Diane: Course, I've now spoken about Gary V in this episode. So now I can tag, you have to tag him. just kidding. Christine: but that's organic. So it would be, you know, if I listen to, let's say, I listen to your podcast. And I was like, wow, she like she, and this other person really hit the nail in the head. Something that some that I agreed with and was important. I could share that out and I would tag you and I would tag that other person, but that would be serving. That would be me sharing valuable information. And because I like you and I like what you're doing, I want other people to know about Diane. So again, it's all back to serving. Whereas sometimes when people tag you it's to serve themselves, that feels gross. Diane: Well, I'm about to ask you where the best place on social media is for everyone to carry in a conversation with you. We're gonna assume that they've listened carefully to [00:20:00] the, what you do not like in that space. And we'll come and have an interesting conversation with you. Where is the best place for them to find you and chat to you on the socials? Christine: Yeah, so I'm actually active on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn, and I've had plenty of conversations through those channels. Diane: I'll be sure to link them so that people can find you. Awesome. Thank you so much for sharing all of your content, networking wisdom with us. Christine: Thank you, Diane.

If you've ever felt overwhelmed and frustrated with content creation, this take on it might change your mind.

Christine McShane walks you through a content strategy that is more like networking and prequalifies your leads before you hop on a call.

Key Takeaway

Discovery calls are the ultimate connection tool but you can use your content to make sure you’re only getting on the right ones to save time and energy

We talk about

  • How the right content can improve your sales process
  • How to use content to start a conversation
  • The best type of content to encourage conversations
  • What not to do in your content
  • Christine’s lifestyle boundary for her business
  • The worst cookie-cutter advice Christine’s been given on her lifestyle business

About Christine

Christine McShane is a copywriter and content strategist that helps you use organic content marketing to attract and pre-qualify your ideal client. The best part about content marketing is that it's actually networking when you can't do it in person. It’s all about creating and nurturing relationships on a scalable level. Everything you produce, including your website copy, sales pages, email newsletters, blogs, and social media should be networking for you and having sales conversations on your behalf. So that when someone finally contacts you, they’re already 75% sold.



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The information contained above is provided for information purposes only. The contents of this podcast episode and article are not intended to amount to advice and you should not rely on any of the contents of this article or episode. Professional advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this article. Diane Mayor disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this article.