76: Content Creation that Connects with Maddie Peschong

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How can you better connect with your audience on social media? In today’s episode, I’m chatting with my good friend Maddie Peschong all about weaving your brand and your story into your content. Maddie is sharing how she creates her content, her advice for staying consistent, and how she shares both her personal and business life with her audience. 

The Shoot It Straight Podcast is brought to you by Sabrina Gebhardt, photographer and educator. Join us each week as we discuss what it’s like to be a female creative entrepreneur while balancing entrepreneurship and motherhood. If you’re trying to find balance in this exciting place you’re in, yet willing to talk about the hard stuff too, Shoot It Straight Podcast is here to share practical and tangible takeaways to help you shoot it straight.

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This episode is brought to you by Portfolio On Purpose, my step-by-step framework for planning and executing a successful model call. Model calls are so important for getting fresh eyes on your business, to create fresh images for new offers, and to create without the expectations of paying clients. With Portfolio On Purpose, you will feel inspired to take action and will have the steps and tools necessary to run a successful model call and get the images that your business truly needs. 

Review the Show Notes:

Get to know Maddie (1:40)

Using a strategy, or winging it? (3:53)

Sharing on the fly versus planning intentionally (7:54)

Seamlessly managing multiple roles and offers (12:33)

Choosing your personal themes (21:27)

Advice for consistency and staying on track (26:54)

Creating a content organization system (32:33)

Rapid-fire questions (36:37)

Connect with Maddie:

The Brand Photography Jumpstart 

Podcast

Instagram  

Website 

Episode Links:

Portfolio on Purpose Freebie

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76: Content Creation that Connects with Maddie Peschong 4

Review the Transcript:

Sabrina Gebhardt
Today on the shoot straight podcast, I am interviewing my friend Maddie Peschong and we are talking all about content creation. Maddie is one of my favorite people to follow on Instagram. Well, partially because I do know her in real life. So she is a friend. But really, she is so good at connecting with her audience. Not only does she share things and tidbits from her personal life, but she’s really great at telling stories and weaving her brand and her business and selling into the whole thing. We are talking about how she creates her content, how she organizes things, how she plans things, she’s given lots of tips and nuggets of advice and encouragement. And if getting better at content and connecting with your audience on social media is one of your goals for this year. This episode is for you. Welcome to the shoot it straight podcast. I’m your host, Sabrina Gephardt here I will share an honest take on what it’s like to be a female creative entrepreneur. while balancing business motherhood and life myself along with my guests will get vulnerable through honest conversations and relatable stories because we’re willing to go there. If you’re trying to find balance in this exciting place you’re in yet willing to talk about the hard stuff to to shoot it straight podcast is here to share practical and tangible takeaways to help you shoot it straight. Welcome back to the shoots straight podcast my friends today I’m chatting with my friend Maddy Zhang and we’re gonna have such a good chat today. I can already feel it. I’m super excited. But before I forget, because apparently I’ve been doing that lately. I want you to introduce yourself to the audience, my friend.

Maddie Peschong
Okay, fantastic. Well, my name is Maddie, I am a brand photographer and coach based in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, I have been a photographer for about 11 years, and I’ve been doing specifically brand photography for about four. So that’s the only thing that I shoot now. And then in I think 2020, I first started to get into coaching and education. And that’s taken a lot of you know, twists and turns over the last couple of years. But ultimately, I ended up where I am now, which is primarily coaching and teaching photographers how to pivot into brand photography. And I absolutely love it. I also have a studio space called whitespace that we rent out to other photographers in our area. And I have a podcast that Sabrina has been on before called Ticket personality, which is all about personal branding.

Sabrina Gebhardt
Yeah, you do such an awesome job, which is one of the things we’re gonna talk about today of just, you’re so cohesive, I feel like you are such a cohesive in all facets, and I love it so much. And we’re definitely gonna talk about that today. So here’s what we’re doing. Maddie is one of my favorite people to follow them online. I don’t know if you knew that. Yes, it’s kind of unfair, because I do know you in real life. We see each other a couple times a year, I get to hug you in person and have real conversations. But I only see you a couple times a year. So really, we have more of an online relationship than we do in a relationship. And I think you do such a great job of being real, but also being really intentional in the ways that you share about your business and you show up for your business and your audience. And I just I always love seeing what you’re up to. So I reached out to you about a month ago and asked if you wanted to come back on the podcast because I want to chat about how you use social media, because you have so many different things going on. But it doesn’t feel like that. When you show up online, it all just goes together. So well. Anyways, that’s what we’re diving into today. And I’m so super excited. So we’re gonna dive straight in and see where this takes us. Okay, cool. I love it. The first thing I want to know is, do you actually have a strategy? Or are you more winging things than we realize? Like do you have content mapped out in any way?

Maddie Peschong
So I think this is a really interesting question, because I absolutely do have a strategy, like every single post that I create online maps up to bigger business goals. However, I don’t get super picky about how I do that. So sometimes that means I’m batching content, sometimes it means I’m just scrolling reels, and I’m like, Oh my gosh, that would be perfect for my audience. Let me drop everything and spend 20 minutes creating this reel of sometimes it means like, you know, when I’m mapping out launches, yes, there’s definitely more thought and like truly mapping things out with like podcast episodes, and maybe scheduling some content. But I’m not the I’m definitely not a person who has like a day or two on my calendar every month where I am only creating content, but every single piece of content is strategic. So it’s a little bit of both. Yeah,

Sabrina Gebhardt
so it sounds sounds like maybe the the planning and the general idea and timing of things is strategic. But the actual content is is more on the fly. Is that how you would say? Would you agree with that? Yeah,

Maddie Peschong
I would say so. Usually, I have some sort of a goal that I’m working towards. So when I am I’ve actually struggled with this in the past. When when I say in the past, I mean, like, November I was really struggling because I was between launches, and I have I really have gotten my launches down. And then I end the launch and I flounder, I’m like, What do I say? What do I talk about? What do I do? And so my business coach gave me the kind of job of like, okay, let’s grow your email list. If you’re floundering with what your strategy is right now, then let’s have it be grow your email list in between launches, that’s a great way to use your time. And so that’s what I was doing for the majority of like, the, you know, the holidays. And then other times I’m specifically launching, so I’m sending people to, I’m sending people to a free event or growing my email list with a freebie that type of thing. But yes, to answer your question, a lot of the time, I will have concepts mapped out like I want to talk about how photographers, let’s see what would be a good example. I want to talk about how photographers are burned out from shooting nights and weekends. Like, I know that that’s the concept, and then honestly all spend time scrolling reels or looking at other people’s content, not in my same industry, I find that to be very key. And just kind of see what are some of the trends? What are some of the like trending audios or, again, trending concepts that are happening? And how can I apply that to my audience?

Sabrina Gebhardt
I love that. And I do want to take a moment and agree with you, when we’re in launch mode for something, it’s really easy to feel really slow, because we’re focused on one thing. And so it’s like how many different ways kind of talk about or lead into the one thing, and then you come out of a launch? And you kind of have like a brain freeze of like, what else do I do? What else should I be doing and talking about, like you just can’t even we can’t even land on anything. It’s so hard. So I love that that you have you moved from a launch into one specific goal. Okay, now we’re just growing the list. That’s, that’s all we’re doing. So we can share about all kinds of different things. As long as it’s directed at growing the list. I think that’s really helpful tip. Again, one thing that I think you do really well is sharing business, or talking about your business or leading into your business, whether it’s you photographing brands, or you educating on brands, but then also sharing about your life in real time and like what you’re doing and you as a mom, and you as a business owner, and you as somebody who’s into holistic wellness and all of these things. How do you have any suggestions for finding balance between that sharing on the fly relationship building for fun, versus planning for intentional loss launches, intentional content?

Maddie Peschong
Yeah. So I think the biggest thing before you get into any of the nitty gritty is to figure out what your boundaries are with social media and also give yourself permission to let that evolve. I used to share a lot more about my kids, when they were a little bit younger, I still have young kids. But as they get older, that’s gotten a lot more complicated in my mind. And so I don’t really share them online anymore. So me sharing my day to day or kind of behind the scenes of my personal life looks a lot different than it did a couple of years ago. And so I’ve had to find other ways to connect with people and figure out again, what I’m comfortable sharing. And that’s going to be different for everybody. But it doesn’t mean that you can’t have a personal brand. So there are saying I mostly am really open about sharing, like some health stuff that I’ve been doing over the past year. Like that doesn’t bother me to share. I am a little bit weird about sharing details of where I live sharing my kids, I don’t share a lot of my marriage, stuff like that. But there’s a lot of things that I’m comfortable with that maybe other people are not. So I think that that’s really step one. And then as far as the breakdown of it, I pretty much reserve my feed for business. And my stories for personal ish. There’s definitely still business stuff in there because I’m typically doing stories during the day while I’m working. So there’s definitely business but I am likely to share like a recipe that I just found or a workout that I did or like something I’m struggling with mentally or you know, whatever it might be. So that is kind of that makes it really easy for me to know like where to put stuff which is helpful. Yeah,

Sabrina Gebhardt
yeah, I love that. And then let’s go back to like when you are in an intentional launch period, like let’s say the doors to your program, were gonna open up. And so you’re really ramping that up with your content. When you’re sharing about personal stuff during a launch period, are you just letting it be what it is? And totally on the fly? Or are you trying to compartmentalize it? And like, tie it into launching? If that makes sense?

Maddie Peschong
It does. Yeah. For me, it’s both and I I’m big on just like intuition and like, Does this feel good. And I have seen, you know, I follow a lot of people online. And so I’ve seen other people try and tie, like the littlest things into what they’re doing in their business. And sometimes it feels super authentic. And you’re like, oh, man, that was a really good tie in. And sometimes you’re like, that was a reach. Like, that feels really weird. And so I just pay attention to that, and like how I’m feeling about it. So that’s something that I definitely pay attention to. But I think that the thing that really helps, like if I’m sharing something personal, and I do want to tie it into what I’m doing in business, which I do a lot, because then it’s business, but it feels personal, is bringing in storytelling. And again, there are so many things in life and in business that I’m really open about and comfortable sharing, especially because as someone who’s educating on something that I started doing five years ago, a lot of those things, you know, if it was traumatic, or if it was difficult, or whatever, I’m good now, like that was a while ago, and so I can talk about it from a good place. But really leading with storytelling and talking about like a time that I experienced something or the reason why I do this now, it makes it feel personal, even though I’m ultimately talking about my business.

Sabrina Gebhardt
So talking about balance, we just talked about kind of balancing sharing on the fly versus intentional planning your content. So for me personally, I struggle with balancing, business and personal but I also really struggle with how my coaching business fits in with my actual photography business, which is so funny, because when I say that out loud, it absolutely should not. I am a photographer, teaching other photographers how to be better in their business, like it seems like it goes hand in hand. But it gets real complicated in our brain, you know, and I sometimes feel like I’m giving my audience whiplash. And it’s really important to me to keep those under one roof on Instagram, because I want my coaching clients to see that I’m still in the trenches with them. And I also want my photography clients to see that I’m a leader in our industry, right? Like, I totally agree, I want it to go there. But it’s somehow it gets so muddy in my brain. And so I know that you also have multiple brands that are under one roof right now, multiple brands with multiple offers. You’ve got the studio, you’ve got the podcasts, you’ve got coaching, you’ve got your actual branding photography, how have you figured out to kind of uncomplicate that web and make it seem so seamless? Well,

Maddie Peschong
I like the fact that you were saying that it seems seamless i I’m going to hold on to that for I was actually just chatting with our mutual friend, colleague, James on a podcast episode of hers about, about this about how complicated it gets when you start offering other offers. So I think first of all, I want to recognize that like, in my opinion, it feels hard, because it is hard. I am so lucky that I am like I ultimately my audience are business owners, right? Like whether it’s a photographer, business owner, or just a business owner, my community is business owners. And even still, it’s so challenging. And I think that that goes to show you that this is why niching down is so powerful, because it becomes so much more clear who you’re talking to. And all of my audiences I feel like are quite niche, but I have multiple of them now. So like I’ve I’ve complicated it. So first recognizing like it’s feels complicated, because it is I think the more clear that you can get on who your ideal client for each of your offer is, the better. I think a huge part of the success that I have had on social media and also the fun that I have the connection that I make is because my messaging I’m constantly working on my messaging and who is she and what is she struggling with and like I want to know her my ideal client like the back of my hand. One of the things that I have also done from a practical standpoint is implement a content cadence. So there are times of the year that I am talking to her my brand photographer, wannabe brand photographer client on the coaching side, and there are other times of the year where I am talking more to someone who would book brand photography with me. That’s really helpful because then I’m able to kind of build momentum toward each of these audiences before I switch I think If I were going back and forth constantly, like on a Monday, I’m talking to one client and on a Tuesday I’m talking to another client that just would not work in my brain. So that has been a really big help for me too. Is that content cadence?

Sabrina Gebhardt
Yeah. Yeah. I love that. And I do think for sure we’re in your situation where? Yes, they’re different audiences. But they’re also a little bit similar. An audience totally for sure. Oh, yeah. Yeah. For me, it’s like, well, I’m talking to young families and mothers, but I’m also talking to business owners all over. And it’s so different. So for me, I try and share the images that I’m working on share when I’m showing up to sessions, obviously, sharing when I have offers and whatnot for my photography clients. But I do spend most of my time and energy speaking to the coaching clients, because I’m so established in the photography space. Yep. But I don’t want I don’t want any new potential clients to land on my Instagram page and be like, Oh, she just coaches and move right along. Right. And so

Maddie Peschong
yes, I have, I would say, last year, I really started experiencing the like, I don’t, I don’t want to leave anybody out. Because I went really hard last year into speaking specifically to a coaching client, because it is my goal. And this has not always been the case. But at this point in my career, it is my goal to scale coaching, I want photography to pretty much stay where it is like, I’m not going to stop. But I see the potential with scaling coaching. And so my messaging and my social media strategy changed based on that goal. And I have noticed that I would say I’m probably getting fewer photography inquiries, I have fantastic past clients that I will continue working with. And that kind of keeps me afloat on that side of my business. But if nothing else, it’s kind of an ego blow to be like, Man, I used to have all of these inquiries all the time. And now I’m still fine, but it’s definitely shifting. And of course, it’s shifting, because I’m not marketing in the same way. So it’s such a mind game.

Sabrina Gebhardt
Yeah, totally. I agree with you. I started to make the push the real lean into scaling education, probably in mid 2022. And same thing. So last year, I saw a pretty hefty decline in new inquiries, just like the Google or the Instagram, DMS of hey, I want to work with you. But when I look at my year end numbers and 2023, my photography income basically stayed exactly the same over Yeah. And so that’s encouraging on one hand, but like you said, it’s a blow to the ego, where you’re like, I’m totally super established badass for years. And now nobody’s in you know, the inquiries aren’t there. But you have to, we have to remind ourselves that like, that’s not where our intent is, right now. Our intent is growing this other thing, and it’s working. So pat on the back for us, you know, yeah. But it’s hard. It’s hard. Because, you know, photography is the first baby and like, we aren’t ready to give that up yet. I know that you and I both think that, number one, it feeds a different part of our passion and our creativity. But number two, we both believe that it’s really important to stay active while coaching women and the same thing, like when asked, yeah, keep that authority and being in the trenches with them. And so it’s hard. And you know, it’s January right now. And inquiries are slow anyway, at least on my side, not necessarily in branding. But it’s just really slow. And I’m constantly having to give myself a pep talk of this is exactly where I’m supposed to be. It’s fine. This is

Maddie Peschong
what we wanted. Like, that’s where I’m always reminding myself is like, so in December, specifically, I had pretty low revenue, specifically on the photography side. And that was strategic. Like, even though when I was in the middle of it, I was like, this is uncomfortable. Yeah, it was a strategic play, because my goal was email list growth, and you know, getting people pumped for my next launch. And like it was a strategic move. And it was so hard, even though it went very well.

Sabrina Gebhardt
Yeah, yeah. Yeah, I get it. I feel that so much because same same, I’m raising my hand. Friend, I want to take a quick second to tell you about a new freebie I have that I’m super excited about whether you are hoping to launch a new offer this year. Or maybe you’re just burned out and looking for some creative inspiration. You will love this new freebie portfolio on purpose. This is my exact step by step framework for planning and executing a successful model call that I’ve been teaching my paying students for years. In case you don’t know why this is so important. Model calls are a great way to do a lot of really positive things in your business. They get fresh eyes on your business. They give you a way to create images that support a new offer that you might want to launch model calls give you a place to play and create without the expectations of paying clients and they’re a great way to fine tune your skills and expand your portfolio. The portfolio on purpose freebie includes a video worksheets, checklists, examples and everything you need to make this process super easy and super successful for you. When you go through portfolio on purpose, you will walk away with the knowledge of what the benefits of model calls are, how they can support your business, creativity and growth, how to create one that pulls in the right people how to keep it organized, including a step by step workflow. At the end of this freebie, you will feel inspired to take action and have the steps and tools necessary to successfully put the model call out, find the right models, and most importantly, get the images you are looking for. If you’re hoping to run a model call or maybe a few this year, head over to Sabrina gebhardt.com backslash model dash freebie to get yours today. Okay, back to the show. Okay, I would love to pivot a little bit and talk about connecting on social media, I know that you are really big on building connection and connecting with people. And I am too and you’re so good at it. You’re so good at connecting with your audience. I’m curious, because you have a few themes, especially in personal as well that you’d like to share about. We are both Swifties we talk about Taylor Swift you share about her all the time. And but I’m curious, do you let your audience dictate what becomes kind of theme? Or are you sharing about whatever and just hopes that you’re pulling in people that enjoy talking about the same things? Or maybe it’s both?

Maddie Peschong
Yeah, I Okay. Interestingly, and I don’t think it’s bad to do it a different way. But I very rarely am giving people the opportunity to have input on what I talked about, which is kind of interesting. I’m definitely playing around and kind of seeing what lands and what people are interested in. It’s always funny to me, the stuff that gets a lot of I and I also am measuring it in a different way. I’m not necessarily measuring it by like, likes and engagement. That’s a piece of it. But my big thing is I’m measuring by connection. I’m measuring by community, if I talk about how I love Beth Dutton from Yellowstone, and my DMs are like 50, deep of people wanting to talk about that, oh, that worked. Like that was something that felt very authentic for me to share, and my people are interested in it too. So there’s definitely like, I treat social media like a playground. And for me, that’s how it stays fun, too. So there’s definitely some of that. But when it comes to the like deeper content, the more educational content, in my opinion, it’s my job to almost understand my people better than they understand themselves. As a coach, that’s the place that I want to be in, I want to be able to say, like I see where you are, and where we could go. So I spend a lot of time thinking about my ideal client. That’s a huge part of like, what I’m working on with my business coach, and continuing to ask, why and ask the deeper question. So it’s not just like, why do you want to be a brand photographer and then taking that answer at face value, but continuing to go deeper and deeper and deeper, because that’s where you get to the stuff that you can create content around. You can create conversations around emails, whatever.

Sabrina Gebhardt
I love that you said that you treat it like a playground. And yeah, you want to talk about but you notice when something lands, and then you can lean into that a little bit. I think that’s really Yeah,

Maddie Peschong
one of my favorite, this is so silly. But one of my favorite like metrics to see how I’m doing as just like a person on Instagram. And as someone who wants to create that sense of community is I measured by what I call it the ground beef metric. And so this is when I have no idea what I’m doing for dinner and I tell Instagram, hey, I’ve got a pound of ground beef and no ideas. What do I do with it? And if my DMs are like poppin, from that question, I know that I’m doing a good job because I’ve got people who are taking time out of their day to be like, here’s my favorite recipe. Here’s the Pinterest recipe that I just saved. And to me that says so much more than like, how many likes did this post get, you know, if people feel like they can create if people feel like they have some sort of a connection with me to the point that they don’t send me a DM because I know the guts that sometimes that can take to send a DM to somebody that you want to chat with. That tells me that I’m doing a good job.

Sabrina Gebhardt
Yeah, I love that. I love that so much. And I’ve totally seen you do that before so I know exactly what you’re talking about.

Maddie Peschong
And most of the time I actually do need a recipe.

Sabrina Gebhardt
But you’re right it’s it’s really great to know that when you ask for you need help or you need suggestions or you need ideas or anything like that and when people start right Seeing their hand and they’re like, I can help. I’ve got something for you. Yeah, just taking the time to respond and to give you a link or to a referral for something or anything like that is just awesome.

Maddie Peschong
Yeah, I think it’s important that my goal was social media never become likes or follows or even email list growth, like my goal was social media is connection. And all of those other cool things like email list growth, and followers or whatever, those are a product of connection. So I really want to create a space where people feel like they can connect a really easy way to do this. Okay, I haven’t actually voiced this before. And I feel like it might be controversial, but I’m going to say it anyway. I have had a couple of reels, because of some of the promotion that I’ve been doing lately. I’ve had a couple of reels recently go viral. And you and I both use many chat with like automated DMS. And so I am, I am like automatically DMing, the 1000s of photography, photographers all of a sudden, and something that has been astounding to me are the amount of photographers who have auto responders that up on their Instagram, DMS. Yeah, I love an auto responder, I love an auto responder. And if you are protecting your piece, then don’t listen to what I’m about to say. But if you are trying to create community online, and you have a freaking auto responder setup, turn it off, turn it off, that is not creating community that is not creating warm fuzzies when people get like a bounce back every time they try and talk to you turn it off. Yes,

Sabrina Gebhardt
I agree with that so much. And again, you’re right. It’s What’s your intention? How are you using social media? Right, right, if it is hard for you, and if social media is a struggle, and you need the boundary Cool, cool, cool. However, if you’re trying to grow that side of your business, that thing is not helping you at all. Yeah, I agree. Creating content, especially creating intentional, really great content is superduper time consuming. And to someone who wants this year to be the year that they finally get organized, get strategic, take their social media to the next level, what advice do you have about consistency and staying quote unquote, on track so that you are really connecting and engaging with your followers. Consistency

Maddie Peschong
is super important. But I definitely look at consistency from more of like a global perspective, then super granular, you’re not going to be consistent. If your idea of consistency is daily, possibly even weekly, like that’s just not going to happen, you’re gonna have times in your life and times in business where that’s completely unrealistic. I always tell people that the goal with social media is to get you business. And if it works, then there will be times where you are too busy with business to update social media. And I hate seeing people beat themselves up over that, because that’s the point like you did it, congratulations. So understanding that there’s going to be times where that like level of consistency is not is not realistic. But if you can look at your year and say, most days, I showed up, most weeks, I made a post or whatever, I think you’re doing great. Like it doesn’t need to be crazy. More than that. I also think it’s important to have a plan for getting back into it, if you get out of it. Because you’re going if you are like really striving for consistency. You need to plan for your inconsistencies, because they are inevitable they’re going to happen. So what’s your plan? When you haven’t posted in a month and you feel really awkward about it? What is the plan? And honestly, my best advice is to just rip off the band aid and say something like you don’t need to acknowledge that you’ve been gone. You don’t owe anybody an apology, or an explanation. Just like get back to it.

Sabrina Gebhardt
It’s fine. Yeah. And honestly, they probably don’t realize it. You’re the one that realizes that they do not realize it. Yeah. Yeah, it’s not. It’s not like you’re rolling in two hours late to a birthday party or a wedding reception. like nobody’s noticing that all of a sudden, it’s a screeching halt. And here you come waltzing in the door. It’s feels like it to you, but that’s not really the case. I love that. I love how you pointed out that for business owners. The goal of social media is marketing, to in turn bring you business and when your business is booming, it can go and it should go to the wayside because I think, especially when you consider the newer business owners and they think that as I should that social media is an important part of growing and getting new clients. Yes, that is true, but they can get so stuck in having to continue at this pace that maybe feels frantic once their business does get going and it’s like, okay, well you can release this other thing you know, it’s okay. Yeah, at that point,

Maddie Peschong
your time is better spent like blowing the socks off your current clients, you know, so they give you referrals and they come back to you like, you really have to take a look at like again, what is the What is the business goal? Do I need more clients right now? Or am I just in a place where I can kind of, you know, stay afloat and keep trying to be top of mind to people for when I want to turn up the new client dial again. But if the goal is not necessarily to get a bunch of new clients from social media, or the the business goal is to not necessarily get a bunch of new clients, then you can release yourself from that a little bit and focus on serving your current clients or focus on other business goals. Yeah,

Sabrina Gebhardt
exactly. I’m speaking specifically to the photographers, we can only serve so many people anyways, you know, I so many of them get stuck on these vanity metrics that apply to influencers, but not to your local photographer, because we don’t have the capacity to serve 1000s of clients a year. So like, we don’t need, we don’t need this massive social media following this huge engagement. If that’s all you’re doing, of course, if you’re trying to scale coaching, or start a different brand, or do something else, we’re talking a different different discussion. But we’re the photographers, right? You just need a really engaged small audience. And you’re doing great. Absolutely.

Maddie Peschong
And I actually think that you bring up a really good point, because the the size of your audience, even if you are scaling, coaching matters a lot less than the quality of your audience. And I don’t mean like low quality people, I just mean, are they somebody who is possibly going to ever want to work with you. I had a real go viral like years and years ago, and it was more of like a mom related reel, like it had nothing to do with business. And I gained 2000 new followers, but they were not my ideal audience at all. And so that actually put me in a really weird space for a while as I kind of navigated like, okay, now I have all these new people who probably could care less about who I am and what I do. And then most recently, I’ve had a couple of reels go viral, specifically, like photography related content. And I have been so pleased to see my audience grow with photographers. And like the difference between those two situations has been night and day, because now I’m like, oh, man, like my audience has expanded with people who are actually interested in possibly working with me. And that’s such a better place to be. And it’s because my content was a lot more strategic than just like what’s trending for all the influencers this week, and

Sabrina Gebhardt
that circles us all the way back around to what you said earlier, where you keep your personal stuff for the most part to your stories, because that’s not going to go viral. Right, and you keep the right tensional content to your feet. I love that. That’s great. I’m curious, do you use any kind of content bank or organization system to dump all of your stuff? And if so, do you want to tell me a little bit about that? Yeah,

Maddie Peschong
it’s it’s a little embarrassing. It totally works for me. Oh, that will caveat with that. Um, it’s like a, there’s a couple of different parts to it. So I have, like any good millennial woman, I have 97 notes in my notes

Sabrina Gebhardt
app. Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. Your iPhone.

Maddie Peschong
I mean, we’ve got everything from baby names to content ideas, and I’m not having any more baby. So it kind of starts there, where I will just jot stuff down, especially if I’m like, not in a you know, which is most of the time, I’m not in a place where I can like drop everything and create content. So I will write stuff down in there anything from like, a line that comes, you know, a sentence that comes to me in the school pickup line, or a concept that I see or whatever, I will jot stuff down in there. And then simultaneously, I will as I scroll reels to just kind of look at stuff, which I would say I do on at least a weekly basis to just see what’s going on. I will save reels, whether it’s an audio that I want to use, whether it’s I keep saying the word concept, but whether it’s just like a concept that I like, like the idea of using B roll with text on top of it to share a lesson that I learned that’s something that’s really trendy right now. So I might say like a concept like that, or whether it’s messaging so I, I follow a lot of people in other industries. So maybe it’s a realtor talking to potential clients and the way that she talked to her clients, I have an idea for how I could talk to my potential clients like that. So those are the two things that I’m doing. And then when I’m actually ready to create content, I will often save things to Planoly. I do have a paid subscription, but you do not need a paid subscription. I think you get like 30 posts a month if you don’t have anything, and I just use it as like a holding area. Like I’ll have my photos in there. I typically will say reels on Instagram, I just make sure that they’re backed up to my camera roll, because I learned that the hard right? But yeah, then I’ll just have stuff on Planoly so if I have like static posts or stuff that I’ve created in Canva like swipeable graphics when I Half the time I’ll go in and create the copy for that, and then save it in Planoly. And then I can see what the feed looks like aesthetically before I post, which doesn’t matter that much, but it does to me. Yeah,

Sabrina Gebhardt
yeah, I gotcha. I am the same, I have way more than 97 notes in my phone, I mean, so many, so many about all kinds of different things. And so I have done that for a long time. And I still do that if I’m, like you said, in carpool or at the grocery store, or whatever, and something comes to me. But this year, I started implementing asana and I have a huge content bank that I’m creating, there was specific I need to do that, like ideas and real ideas and subject lines, and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, all that I’m just kind of keeping it there. Trying to just get a little bit more organized with myself this year. So I need to

Maddie Peschong
do that I do all the things that you were saying I just do it in my notes app. And it’s just not super effective. Like if you’re trying to search for something or it’s not super effective. So I needed to move it into Asana as well. I think that’s a great idea. Yeah,

Sabrina Gebhardt
I think Gnosis is a great place to start, you know, like don’t please not go out and think that you need some massive to learn a new tool right away. I had just gotten to the point where it was so choppy and notes that it was almost hurting me and not benefiting me anymore. And so just like let’s get it all into one place. Plus I can drag it and drop it into like a calendar and see things I can give myself due dates for stuff and reminder like that. Yeah, so we’re just we’re just getting into it. Now you could check in with me in like June and see if I’m still utilizing it. Fair, so he’s gonna hold me accountable. Okay, so I always love to wrap with some kind of fun questions, and we’re gonna, we’re gonna do the New Year theme for these. This time, if you listen to the podcast for a while, basically all of last year, I asked you the same four questions. So we’re changing it up for the new year. So I’m curious if you have a word of the year and if so what is it?

Maddie Peschong
I do? My Word of the Year is unapologetic. I

Sabrina Gebhardt
love that that I do. That’s a really exciting, I love it. My Word of the Year for this year is thrive. Oh, yeah. Which I’m really excited about. I haven’t made anything pretty for it yet, like made any kind of visual, be there. I’m going to be doing that with my mastermind. They have homework for that next week. So I’m going to do it alongside them. But I love that. Okay, what are you most looking forward to in 2024?

Maddie Peschong
Oh, I feel like this is going to be a really good year for to use a not very sexy word like the scaling of my business. I feel like this is gonna be a big year for some growth that I have been eager to have for a long time and did not have the pieces in the right places for and now I feel so confident about my offers and my team and all of those things. I’m like, let’s turn up the volume. Like, let’s just go so I’m really excited about that. Yeah.

Sabrina Gebhardt
So same, same for me. I feel like the last few years have. I mean, if you look back over the last three years, there’s definitely been astronomical growth and a lot of weight. I’ve made a lot of strides, but I haven’t quite gotten where I’ve wanted. And in some ways, they were some parts of the year where I felt like it was running in place. You know what I mean? Yeah, but I’m the same way I feel like coming into this year, things are finally where they need to be. The seeds have been planted in the right places, it’s time to frickin let’s go you know, so totally excited to and also I was talking to somebody the other day that said that that’s actually the energy of this year, I guess this year is the year of the dragon and there’s something about that, that is literally that same energy of like finally blossoming, blossoming things that have been planted and I’m like that I love that Oh yeah. What is something that you are leaving behind in 2023 that is not coming with you this year. I

Maddie Peschong
will probably work on this for the rest of my life. But I really want to focus this year on leaving people pleasing in the past. I know now that all of the good like cool successes and moments that I have had in life and in business have been from when I am just being authentically me and doing what I want or need to do for me for my business for my family. And yet it’s so easy to kind of slip back into the people pleasing like sure I can get coffee even though you don’t really have direction of where you want to go with this coffee meeting or yes I can be on your podcast even though that’s not really like it doesn’t make sense for for my business or brand or whatever. And I want to feel that’s why my word of the year is unapologetic. I want to feel unapologetic about being like nope my plate is a as full as I would like it to be, nope, that doesn’t make sense for my business. Nope, that doesn’t make sense for my family and just ending in at that, which is going to be a challenge.

Sabrina Gebhardt
Yeah, yeah. So mine is really similar, really similar basically parallels yours, but I’m leaving behind over commitment. And that’s something that I preach all the time. But I have stopped doing myself. And it’s just it’s a really bad habit. And some of it is people pleasing. But some of it is because I historically love to be busy, I love to be able to say that I’m doing things I love to be asked to be involved and included. And so it’s just it’s a really bad habit. So I actually fell real hard and to getting sucked back into that last year. And we’re just we’re just not doing that anymore. So I’ll be say hello, and taking pause and, you know, potentially not jumping on all my ideas immediately. Be hard. Yeah,

Maddie Peschong
I know. Yeah. I

Sabrina Gebhardt
love something. Yeah. So okay, this has been such a great chat, as I knew it would be, I can’t wait to hear what the listeners have to say, and how many light bulbs went off for them. So before we go, though, I do want you to share number one, where they can connect, it’s Instagram, but also, I want you to share how people can work with you. And if they’re interested in coaching with you. Yes,

Maddie Peschong
awesome. So you can absolutely find me on Instagram, I always say I spend way too much time over there, but it’s because I genuinely enjoy it. And I love the connections that I’m making. So Instagram is a great one, my website, all of them are just going to be Maddie Peschong. So at Matty Buchon or Monty python.com. And I am also gearing up for another launch in the next couple of weeks. So I would say the best way to decide if we’re a fit and you want to work with me or interested I have a free mini course coming up that is February 12 through the 16th called the brand photography jumpstart where I help you learn how to make your first $500 as a brand photographer. So that’s a really great way to just kind of see how I teach and how I coach and what that looks like. And then as soon as that is done, the doors will open to rebrand, which is my group coaching program for photographers who want to start offering brand photography. So come take the free course you’ve got nothing to lose and that’ll give you a really good idea if we’re a good fit.

Sabrina Gebhardt
Awesome. I will have all of those links in the show notes. Go give Maddie a follow she is so fun to watch and engage with on Instagram my friend. It was a great chat. Thank you so much for being here and we’ll see you next time. Thanks so much for listening to the shoot it straight podcast. You can find all the full show notes and details from today’s episode at Sabrina gebhardt.com backslash podcast. Come find me and connect over on the gram at Sabrina Gebhart photography. If you’re loving the podcast, I’d be honored if you hit that subscribe button and leave me a review. Until next time, my friends shoot it straight.

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