Unlearn bad ideas that hold you back

Unlearn. The dictionary defines it as ”putting out of one’s knowledge or memory; undoing the effect, discarding the habit.” 

Much of our formal learning is abstract and theoretical, but not necessarily practical. Does that mean your degree was a waste of time? No, but effective content creators have one trait in common: they love being wrong about content.

Embracing failure, getting excited about getting content wrong–most of us cringe at the thought. We want instant success, easy wins, and most of all, we want to be right. When we mess up, when our content doesn’t get results, we tend to dismiss it and move on to the next idea. But if we don’t question our assumptions about content creation, we can’t be surprised with lackluster engagement.

It’s human nature to take shortcuts, and one of the mental shortcuts we take is gravitating toward patterns. The “rules” of corporate branding is one of those patterns. Incorporate the same color scheme. Lead with brand. Always do X. Never do Y. These shortcuts are easy because they don’t require much thought and they shift accountability somewhere else.

And some brands are satisfied with mediocre or even poor performance. They’d rather play it safe, clinging to outdated brand guidelines and ancient advertising practices. Some may even believe “going viral” is a bad thing, preferring to cater to a tiny niche.

Here’s something to unlearn: Create content with your niche audience in mind. Instead, focus on those who do not care about your niche. The common logic is to focus on niche and it kills you in the algorithm. Create instead for the masses and address your core target within it.

Think about that for a second. What’s more promising–1000 views with 50% being your niche audience? Or 100,000 views with 20% being your core target audience? How would that affect revenue?

Getting 100,000 views requires unlearning the rules and embracing a mindset shift. Instead of asking what follows the brand guidelines, or what you’d like to post, start asking what works. And not just what’s working on social media, but what’s not working. Where are creators getting it wrong and why?

At the heart of going viral is a creative process that leans hard into research. Viral creators love it when they get it wrong. OK, maybe they don’t love it, but they eagerly use the failures to harvest important information for the next creation cycle.

You don’t have to toss your degree in the bin, but unlearning some of the conventional wisdom is the first step to getting it right.Feel like there’s just one thing that’s holding you back from success? This may be the right fit for you…Register for my master class here.

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