Writers Notes

Becoming Known: Lessons From Mark Schaefer's Known.

Natasha Musa 3 min read
Becoming Known: Lessons From Mark Schaefer's Known.
Photo by Javier Allegue Barros / Unsplash

Implementing lessons from Mark W. Schaefer's Known.

This is my second post sharing my learnings from reading Known. You can read my first post here. This book has been eye-opening for me, and I realize that I need to start creating content online consistently if I really want to gain leverage for myself.

Not long after reading Known, I posted on Twitter that I intended to go through the workbook. To which my friend Kevon asked, "What do you want to be known for, Tash?" That question stumped me, as I didn't have an answer. I don't think I ever responded to his question. Oops! Sorry, Kevon.

I've been writing on Twitter for so long on so many topics that I never stopped to think about what I'd like to be known for.

It's a good thing Schaefer's book came with an accompanying workbook to help me narrow down a niche for myself.

What Do You Want To Be Known For? Finding A Sustainable Interest.

Schaefer advises that identifying a sustainable interest is the first step to becoming known.

The topic you want to be known for should be based on a sustainable interest. It's a topic you'll love and have fun with for years to come. It should go beyond passion or a hobby. After going through the exercises in the workbook to identify my sustainable interests, I've decided to combine my interest in digital writing, two decades of experience as a marketer and my coaching skills to help other marketers thrive in the fast-paced, ever-changing digital environment.

Now the only concern I have is that digital marketing is a pretty crowded space, but as Schaefer advised, it's okay to want to be known in a crowded niche so long as you can develop a unique tone or point of view. I don't know if I'll be able to stand out in the crowd, but I guess the only way to see if I can succeed in this space is through experimentation.

If it doesn't work, I'll pivot.

Other Lessons To Implement.

There are a couple of other lessons from the book that I intend to implement:

  1. Stop approaching writing online as a hobby.

If I want to succeed, I need to change my approach to writing online. Writing is my way of building my personal brand. I need to stop treating it as a passion project but as a business start-up. As Schaefer puts it, "Think of your personal brand as a start-up, the start-up of YOU."

2. Re-evaluate my space.

By space, I mean the social media platform I should be present in. I've always been a Twitter fan. Twitter is a casual and easy-going platform, but if I want to build a name for myself professionally, I think I will need to move to LinkedIn.

Unfortunately, I am not as familiar with Linkedin as I am with Twitter, so I may need to research before diving into the platform.

3. Creating consistent content.

In Known, Schaefer interviewed nearly 100 individuals about what it takes to be known, and every person has mentioned the same word: achieving consistency over time.

In the past two years, I have taken courses from successful digital creators like Ali Abdaal, Justin Welsh, Nicolas Cole and Dickie Bush, and similarly, they say the same thing too; consistency wins the game.

Drawing from my own experience writing on Twitter, I am rarely consistent. To overcome this, I will need to craft time to plan my content instead of doing my writing a day in advance, like I'm doing currently. Bad habit, I know.

I'm grateful to have stumbled upon this book and took the time to go through it in detail. It's forced me to pause and re-evaluate my objectives and the strategies to implement to achieve my renewed goal.

My next steps are researching LinkedIn and creating a content strategy to help me stand out as a marketer. I'm sure there'll be many experiments, learnings and pivoting along the way, and I hope to share my progress.

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