Simplify Video Creation with Content Pillars & Realistic Production Tactics! with Natasha Pierre
When people want to learn more about you, they often go to your socials first...
And whether that's Instagram or something else...
And whether you're using video or something else..
You need to content that's easy for you to make and easy for your audience to find you!
This is where Natasha Pierre comes in: as a content expert & video marketing coach, she helps small businesses build their brand confidently with a video marketing strategy.
BUT! If you’ve felt overwhelmed by creating or feel frustrated with video and know you're not creating anything strategically…
(Because the splatter of your ideas everywhere gets worse & worse every month)...
Today’s episode is 100000% for you!
Because we unpack 3 BIG things on how to simplify video creation using content pillars and realistic production tactics!
By the end of this episode you’ll feel
much more confident about how to use topics & ideas
possibilities around creating a realistic FLOW that works for you,
a shift your mind about “what professional content has to look like.”
Come on – you don’t need to keep making this content stuff SO HARD or feeling so pissed off that you “have to do it”. It CAN be easier.
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Hello, hello, and welcome to the Content Creation Made Easy podcast - I’m your host Jen Liddy. If you are anything like me, you know that Instagram is a place where people go to find information, and it’s one of the first places people often wind up going to search for you. You know it’s important, and you might even tell yourself that you should be there, but you feel overwhelmed by it or feel frustrated by it, and you just don’t know what you’re doing.
Then today’s episode is 100000% for you - I’ve invited Natasha Pierre on. I invited Natasha on because I follow her on Instagram, and I find her stuff to be relatable, realistic, and doable which is basically the entire premise of why my business exists. If it was not gonna be those three things, then why are we doing it?
I wanted to say a little teeny bit about her because you’re going to find way more about her as we go. Natasha has her own podcast called “Shine Online” and is a video marketing coach. She is all about helping small businesses through her educational content through her signature group program, and she is all about helping people build their brand confidently with a video marketing strategy. I love that we’re going to be specifically talking about Instagram and video today grow your business, grow your community, and also have an impact on your audience.
Natasha, thanks for being here - I really appreciate it!
I mean, you're speaking my language on just content being easier, so I'm just so excited to chat.
I was really glad when you said yes to be on the podcast.
Can you tell us a little bit about your background? How did you get into becoming an Instagram video coach, basically?
It started back when I was in college. I started doing some digital marketing and public relationship internships. The first person I interned with, she had her own digital marketing business. She worked completely remote, and it was my first time introduced to the entrepreneurship world.
Circle back a few years after that, she really had planted the seed. Before I was graduating, I was like, So what do I want to do when I graduate? What is that dream job going to be? So I had the idea of doing social media management services, and I told her about the idea. She was like, go for it, I'll actually give you your first client.
That is how it started, and I started just freelancing websites, doing social media management. Really quickly, I knew I needed to niche down because any social media manager knows that when you're doing social media management for all the platforms, it is quite literally a full-time job. I just found that Instagram was what got me the most excited, but also was what businesses struggled the most to really leverage for their brands. That's where my Instagram management services came about.
From doing courses and starting to build my personal brand, that has now transformed into how I work with my clients now through coaching and my signature programs.
You just sent an email recently about what social media managers know and need to know. Can we just talk for a minute? Because some of the people listening to this podcast are their own social media managers, or they might have a virtual assistant who they've taught how to be a social media manager.
Can we just take a minute and talk about what it means to be a social media manager? I think you said something important, like it's a full-time job, which is, I think, why people are so overwhelmed.
I'd love to hear your take on what it means to be a social media manager.
When it comes to social media management, we're not only managing the strategy side of things of what our goal is and what we are creating to get closer to that goal, but there also is the other side of it is actually creating the content, organizing the content, editing, scheduling, everything like that.
For every part of that process, I mean, you're like a copywriter and a designer and a video editor and everything in between. What's really interesting is even as someone who has been a social media manager, and I think for a lot of bigger businesses, it's absolutely a necessity. But what I often find is that people often outsource too much of their social media to VAs or social media management, or they think that hiring a social media manager is going to fix the problem.
From my experience, I'm working with my own clients, it was like pulling teeth to get them on video and get them showing up because you could have the best social media manager on your team, but we can never replace you as the founder of your business, as the person creating the products or facilitating the offers.
We can never replace that, and we can never be that. While I think that having a social media manager can be so helpful for just helping you be consistent, I actually think that we all have such a unique opportunity where we are able to be our own creators for our brands. I mean, really big brands, they hire creators to create content for them, and we have all the tools we need to do that.
My hot take is that, yes, I love social media managers, and we can facilitate such a really important role, but I often find that we can be our own social media managers with the right tools and tactics in place.
Today we're going to talk about how to simplify the video creation piece, so a lot of what you said, there's a lot in what you just said.
You talked about strategy, which I'm always talking about, why are you putting the thing out there? If you don't know why you're putting the thing out there, it's not going to lead your audience where you want them to go. That's a waste of your time, so if you're your own social media manager, you're doing everything from that strategy creation to then all the nuts and bolts of writing the copy, putting it in Canva, then putting it into a scheduler, researching the hashtags. If that's what you're doing, there are a lot of reasons why we're so tired.
The other thing I think you said that's incredibly important is video. I'm not a huge fan of video, and here's why. I hate talking to nobody because I'm an extrovert, and so it feels like I'm just opening the window and talking to nobody. I do know I could do an interview like this and conversation like this all day long, but in an AI world where a lot of copy can be generated for us, the thing that really is important is for us to get on video as part of our social media strategy because it's a way to connect and be real.
I think that that's an important nugget that you said, it's that video piece, but when we have so much else going on, it's really hard to find the energy to get on video.
Yes, and I totally get that.
I don't have a social media manager. I don't have a lot of marketing help, so it could even take a lot of time and capacity for me as well. I think the first thing I always have my clients do is, yes, we talk about strategy, we talk about your goals, but I actually like them to do a strength assessment because, as you already identified, you have a unique strength of really loving conversation and love connecting with the community.
Some people might not like editing or filming content, or some people might like having an idea and be really great at writing copy. There are so many different things that we're great at. And I think we often sometimes use that as an excuse of like, oh, well, then video is not for me. I actually think that there are so many types of video, especially on a platform like Instagram, that chances are we can find a way that does feel good for us, which means when it feels good, when it feels enjoyable, then we're more likely to be able to do it consistently, and it doesn't feel so draining.
That's always what I recommend to people don't do what doesn't feel good because, at the end of the day, it's not going to be sustainable.
It's like finding the right exercise or workout, or eating plan for yourself. If you don't like it, you're never going to stick to it. I know today we're going to talk about three ways to simplify your content, and so what we're setting up here is the big problem.
The thing that I love about you is you break everything down to such a realistic approach to solve that problem. Let's move into what are the three ways to simplify your video content, sound good?
Yes, let's do it.
I know that you've got three things here.
We're starting with the topic, so what do people struggle with when it comes to content topics, and how can we make it easier?
I think the biggest thing when it comes to content topics is we just think of what we do and what we're an expert at, and we just grab for any ideas that we can without really having set topics that we're talking about on a regular basis. This is where I love to recommend content pillars. And I know that everyone has a different approach to content pillars.
Maybe you've tried content pillars, and maybe it hasn't worked for you. But what I found to be the most effective for so many different types of businesses is having five specific topics and categories. Some of these might be the ones that automatically come to your mind of what you're an expert at, what you do in your business, and what your industry or niches are.
I always like to have one of those be more of a personal connection point. I always like to add the disclaimer; this doesn't mean you have to share all of your personal business and all of your personal life. It is important to have a few things to just connect with your people to humanize your brand. That's one of those pillars that might only be on a platform like stories.
Then the other type of content I like to include in my content pillars is something that is related to what you do but not directly what you do. An example of this is one of my favorite cleaning brands, Blue Land - they do eco-friendly cleaning supplies. One of the things that I love that they incorporate into their content is, yes, they talk about how to use the cleaning supplies and cleaning hacks and all those types of things.
Another thing that they share is essentially how to be more eco-friendly in your life, how to use less plastic or global warming, and all those different things that they know the ideal person they're reaching is not just interested in how to clean and use less plastic in their daily routine, but they're interested in those deeper values, so those related topics.
Once we have those five content pillars, we can go back to those pillars on a consistent basis. And those will help you not only generate content ideas but also vet any random ideas that come up when you're brainstorming or in your daily routine.
You can make sure that you're always intentionally creating.
People who are entrepreneurial are super creative, and so they're always finding new problems. They're always finding new holes in the market.
It's like they get that shiny object syndrome, so what you just said is basically set your content pillars or your buckets or your topics, whatever you want to call them, and then return to them. Is that got it right? So what are your content pillars?
Oh, I love that question, so the first one is video marketing for small businesses. Specifically, what are the strategies needed to actually grow a business? I don't do creators, not influencers, specifically small businesses, and another one is actually video content creation.
As you can see, those are the obvious ones that come up, and you could probably think they are the same thing. But one is really covering strategy, and one is covering more of the actionable things that we're doing. Another one is authority building, so this one relates back to one of my offers. This is really how to be a thought leader and how to incorporate things like brand partnerships or speaking and essentially growing and scaling your business.
My fourth content pillar is behind the scenes in my own business. This is one of the ways that I connect with my audience, and I share behind the scenes what I'm working on, what's working in my strategy, what new things I'm trying, and just how I run my own business. Then my last pillar is entrepreneur wellness.
This is where I'll share things like my morning routine and rituals, my daily matcha. This also is where I'll share things like mental health and wellness and being in the social media space. Those are my content pillars, and as you can see, it creates a very well-rounded brand.
If I only talked about video marketing and video content creation, I really would only be scratching the surface of my brand, which I think is where the idea of just having a niche, niche down and having one thing, I think that's where that can actually harm our strategies. That's inside of my own pillars.
I want people listening to hear that you did not say anywhere in there that I bring people into the gynecologist's office with me, you have a private life still. You don't have to bleed all over the internet in order to share a little bit of yourself.
Your last pillar that's where you really get to do the behind-the-scenes and then the wellness piece; those are the two pillars where you can really shine with your private personal stuff.
I think it's really important to have those personal boundaries because that also is not sustainable to share what you're doing on your weekend and show your family and all those different types of things. Everyone has different comfort levels, but for most of us, we have to set some type of boundary.
For that personal pillar, something that we love to call it as inside my program is we call it your personal potpourri. I feel like that makes it really fun because it means that it can and should evolve, just like any of your pillars; it can and should evolve as your interests evolve. I recently, literally this weekend, I just got a walking pad.
What’s a walking pad?
It's like a treadmill that goes under my desk.
I literally just got it, and I'm still testing it out, so that's something I'm sharing in my stories. People were so interested in it, and that relates to entrepreneur wellness. I love to go on walks and take care of myself.
That's something that I didn't talk about before, but it's something that relates back to that personal pillar. I think it makes it something fun that you can change and experiment with as you grow and change as a person.
Today I was listening to a creator who's a friend of mine, and she recently had some surgery, and she wasn't telling people what surgery she had had, and I could tell the energy behind what she was saying was almost like an apology about not telling people. She mostly was saying it's just that it's not a big deal, and you don't need to worry about it.
Then finally, somebody commented, you don't have to share everything with your people, and I could tell that that was a relief for her to hear. I think that's an important thing when you're establishing your topics or your pillars. There needs to be a little bit of you in there, but it doesn't need to be everything.
To your point, when we set those boundaries with our community, they're always going to respect them, but I often find, I think, a lot of influencers, lifestyle influencers, are navigating this space currently, but there isn't really a landscape of do I show my kids online and do I share everything that I'm doing?
I think that they're the first to pave that way, but overall, what I've seen so many of them say is that I'm tired of creating, and they eventually get to this place of burnout. Then their community is like, well, I want to see more of this, and I want to see more of that because once you take the shackles off and there really are no boundaries, then people don't have boundaries with you as well.
I think it's really important to set the expectation of how we want our communities to interact with us and what we are willing to share, and what we're not.
I think that if somebody is listening to this and they're a little uncomfortable with how far the boundaries have been pushed or what they've exposed already or let people into, you can immediately take that back.
The only person creating the expectation is you at this point - that's really great. We're having this conversation. When it comes to topics, making video creation easier, having those pillars, you suggest up to five.
What are some of the things that people bump up against when it comes to creating their five pillars?
I think the biggest thing I see is people take types of content, and they think they're content pillars, and this is because a lot of people approach content pillars this way. To each their own, everyone has a different approach, but what I often see is people say, work with me Monday or tip Tuesday or education or entertainment or inspiration.
These are all types of content and the goals of your content, but they will be very hard to consistently brainstorm content around.
It's also not strategic.
A Wellness Wednesday doesn't get you into my program that I'm launching in two weeks, right?
Even if you did wellness programs, it still wouldn't be effective. It can be the way you create your content pillars, but it shouldn't be your content pillars. Another thing is you heard in my content pillars that none of them were my offer name, group program, Mastermind, VIP days.
Your pillars should support at least one or more of your offers. As I said, I had an authority-building one, and that's what my Mastermind is all about. You should be able to have pillars that support you in launching and selling your offers.
Of course, that's what makes them strategic, but I often find that people literally, especially if they have products or services, they're like, branding design package is the pillar. I'm like, that's not really the pillar, but we're very close.
Those are the biggest mistakes that I see with pillars.
One of the things my clients struggle with is they just have a gillion ideas, so it really is hard for them. They feel that the content pillars can be a little rigid, like, oh, I don't want to be saying the same things all the time.
My clients, I'm curious if your clients do this too, I always say you have to manage your own mind because you're going to get bored with your content before your audience gets bored with your content, so returning to those five content pillars can feel boring for a really dynamic creator.
I think with those types of people, when you find that you have so many things you want to talk about, I think the biggest thing is really just think about what is your goal with what you're doing. If all those exciting things don't lead to that goal, I think it'll probably give you a little bit of the permission slip of like, okay, then yeah, maybe this doesn't really serve a purpose.
Or maybe it's something fun that I can share on stories. It doesn't need to be in all of my content. But I also will say if those types of people struggle with nailing down the five, I actually find that they like reversing the process of creating their content pillars. Just brainstorm all the ideas and then start to categorize them, and you'll start to see the common threads of, like, these are all the sub-topics within that overarching topic.
I think that allows you to have all those ideas and be creative and still have a little bit of fun, but know that you want to have those little pillars to help you guide yourself so you're really spending your time and energy wisely.
That's such a great way to reverse engineer it for those people who are like idea machines - I love it.
All right, let's move on to another way to simplify video content, which is actually the production piece of it. I cannot wait to hear what you have to say about this because part of why I railed so hard against video, especially when it was really coming into play in TikTok in 2020, while I was sitting on my hammock, consuming hours of TikTok, so much that the TikTok guy would come on and be like, you've been on here a long time go get something to eat.
I enjoyed consuming it, but the idea of a production that included scripts and characters and costumes and music, I just couldn't, and I still can't, frankly.
I can't wait to hear what you have to say about production.
What I often find in production is that people create obstacles for showing up on video, and I'm not calling you out yet. I'm not calling you out because I have been there. I'm the person who wants to do the fanciest video, but there are two reasons why I want to encourage people.
I get this from my clients all the time, and they're like, how did you do this fancy thing on your story? And I'm like, I'm not going to tell you because you don't need to do it kind of thing.
You don't need to have the fancy transition, or you don't need to do an overly produced piece of content if that is an obstacle. If it's something that lights you up and gets you creative, which honestly, people think I'm absolutely insane.
Editing is my favorite part of the video process.
You are a unicorn, I have to say.
Which I know is not most people, and I think it's really important to understand we already talked about those strengths, so what are the weaknesses that we want to avoid? If it's editing, if it's talking, if any of those things are holding you back and really draining from you and being an obstacle, it's one of those things, again, you won't be able to consistently be on video.
Make it as easy as possible to create video content, and I'm going to give a few ideas on how people could do that. The first is your actual setup; what I often find is that people are either using the most complex lighting and tripods and stuff that they don't need but just think about what type of video content do I want to create and how they can I make that easier for me.
Maybe it's having a corner in your house that you love how it looks, and so that's always going to be the place you sit down and do your videos. As for me, I always have my phone stand right on my desk. Literally, not only do I see it every day, but when I'm doing podcast interviews or coaching my clients, or just working behind the scenes, I literally just put my phone up, and then I'm creating video content.
Or if you do have a tripod and let's say you're working with your product or you want to take it around with you, choose something that's sturdy and easy to bring around and maybe just keep it up in a corner of your office so you're a lot more likely to grab it. I really feel like tools can be really helpful for us, and it gives us a little bit of a buy-in of, like, okay, I'm doing this video thing. I bought the $20 Amazon tripod, but what it really does is it makes it easier.
So we're not like, well, do I hold my phone or do I put my phone here? It makes it feel so much more frustrating than it needs to be. Another tip that's one of my favorites, and I actually use it all the time, is actually using your nonvideo content to turn it into videos.
I know we already talked about content pillars and ideation, but if you're just like, I just need to start creating video content and get that habit rolling because, at the end of the day, that's simply what it is. And you need to practice and tweak for it to become easier to take captions or carousel copy or emails or blog posts or podcast scripts.
Take those and turn those into video outlines or turn those into one of my favorite types of easy types of content. You could literally just create these quote videos, which is exactly how it sounds. Take some simple footage of, like I said, you working in your business, you walking into your office, coaching, whatever you do in your business, that footage you're already capturing, and literally just add text on top. It could be a perspective shift.
It could be a new way of doing something. It could be a hot take. It could be how to do something. It could be a tip. Whatever that content is that you're repurposing, probably just from doing that alone, I'm going to give that as homework for everyone listening, you will probably be able to get weeks worth of content, but you're also getting the value of video. I find that those are just a few ways to get you started with simplifying your video content.
I find that when we don't feel like we need to overly produce and edit and use the fanciest tools and we have to be all done up and things like that when we take away those obstacles, we allow ourselves to show up more in our video content.
You said something in our back-and-forth setting this up was to ignore the pressure to always be groundbreaking. I think that comes into play not only when you're choosing your topics and your content pillars but also the production value.
You don't need to go over the top, and the complication that goes along with you doesn't have to be groundbreaking.
I think we all feel like we need to always reinvent the wheel and always be creating something new. It has to be shinier or more interesting or whatever it is compared to someone else in your industry.
Really at the end of the day, when we actually pull the reins back, and we simplify the content we're creating, and it doesn't need to have ten hacks, and it's just one really great insight, we're actually serving our audience better because they're not overwhelmed. They are able to actually get the message and see that little transformation or shift or win as they're watching your video.
I feel like we think by doing more, we're actually doing better, but it's the opposite.
I call it the difference between firehosing and fish food. You can't drink from a fire hose, and if you give people a little bit of fish food, they take what they need, and they go back to the point where I really feel like I need to change the name of my tagline to do less content, have more impact.
That's really what you and I are talking about here. One last thing on the idea of production, and I think this is a stumbling block for a lot of people. I'm curious to hear what your clients do with this. Do people think they need to be in full makeup, get their hair done, get an outfit on, and have the perfect background?
My VAs and I were just talking the other day, and they're like, can you do some video in your car? Because people seem to really like videos in cars. I'm always really like, really?
It is a thing, this concept of casual content, so the first thing is to identify why we feel the need to be done up on camera. What I often find that it boils down to, we think to be professional, to be taken seriously, for people to buy our stuff, we have to be done up. We have to be in the best corner, and we have to have all those things.
While I think that we can incorporate those things, if that feels good for you, if you love getting ready to film your content and that's a ritual that makes you feel confident, I say go for it. If it's wearing your favorite color, I obviously love my yellow office. I love seeing that in the backgrounds of my videos, so with those types of things, if they're helpful, I say go for it.
Everyone has different comfort levels, but I really think that it's rewriting. What does showing up on video even mean? And for the most part, someone's watching your video looking exactly how you're creating it. And it makes it relatable. It's human. We all work from home, we're in our cars, whatever it is.
At the end of the day, I think as long as the quality of the video, and when I mean quality, I mean that we can actually hear you, that it's not blurry, that yes, the content as well of what you're talking about and what you're sharing, as long as that is good, I say you can show up however you'd like to. That's definitely how I show up as well. So yeah, I definitely don't think it's necessary. And I, in fact, think doing the opposite can be just as impactful for just connecting with your audience.
They're real people, too, and they're watching you from their bed.
So the third thing that we want to talk about to simplify video content is your actual footage, and you've got some really great tactical stuff here - I'd love to hear it.
When it comes to your footage, the thing that has completely changed my life is stock content. It's something that I will not shut up about on my Instagram, anywhere. Stock content, and at the end of the day, it's B roll, which essentially is just video clips and supplemental footage. And what I find is so, so helpful is I try to stockpile this type of stock content.
When I want to create that quote video that I mentioned, or I want to put together a storytelling video where whatever type of content I create or even using it on stories, I already have the footage. I've gotten in the habit of doing this where if I created no new footage today, it probably would get me through most of this year. Once you enact that habit of, okay, I'm walking into my office, I'm doing those things in my routine, I like to call that just content stacking, which essentially is habit stacking, if anyone's a productivity nerd like myself, which essentially is just like, What are the things you're already doing? And just capture it for video footage.
Yeah, you can just hit record.
Yes, I just hit the record.
I think that goes back to my other tip of having the tripod up, have the phone stand up so you can just press record, and it's really easy. But once you get into the habit of doing that in your daily routine, you also can do it in the way of batching.
I also love doing this with a content day, so essentially, I set aside a part of a day, I put together a little short list of, oh, I want some video clips of me creating content and me walking in my office and me with my matcha and my coaching. I put together just some shots that I want to capture. Maybe this is where if you want to be in your favorite space, maybe you want to go to a coffee shop and do it with a friend or go to a park or the beach or whatever it is, but make it a fun experience and then just get a bunch of video footage.
Just get as much as you can because that will get you through months, quarters, and half of a year's worth of content. Really focusing on multi-use video footage has really changed how I think about creating video content is that I can show up on stories, or I can create reels, or I can create footage that goes across all the different platforms I'm creating on, but I'm literally just doing it with stuff that I'm already doing, and I can batch it in advance.
That's been my favorite thing ever lately.
Double dipping is a good thing here, and I just want to be clear for people listening. It's not like you're not a talking head on the phone at this point. You're just having it recorded, and then the music or even a voice overlay would go over it.
It's not like you have to be talking to your phone while you're just getting this B-roll footage.
I think there's a lot of value in talking videos in your strategy, but it literally takes energy to talk. I think with using your stock content, you can have a voiceover where you're sharing your thoughts or talking about the tipper insight, or you can have text and then be able to leverage trending audios without having to create a trend that you're going to post once and never be able to post again.
So yes, it's pretty much very easy, with minimal setup, and you also really only need to know basic edits, know how to upload a clip, film a clip, and add text to it, and you're good to go. I love it.
I think that you've given us so much great information and insights and also mindset shifts. It's not just about knowing how to do it, it's about clearing out the garbage so you can do it. I just want to say thank you, Natasha.
This has been, I think, well, you speak my language, so I really love that. I really think it's tactical and super doable for people, so thank you so much for coming on and sharing it.
How can people get into your world?
Yes, thank you so much for having me.
If you want to connect with me, Instagram's definitely one of the best places at @shinewithnatasha, and you also can find me on TikTok and YouTube at Shine With Natasha.
Then definitely tune into the Shine Online podcast - I actually have an entire episode on how I structure my content days.
If that concept appealed to you, I feel like that'd be a great place to start binging.
I think if you're a listener who's really interested in diving specifically into Instagram, following Natasha and listening to her podcast will help you because we just touched the tip of the iceberg today with just simplifying video content.
There's so much more about Instagram that you can harness to use to your benefit. So go follow Natasha. Did you say your website yet?
Yes, https://shinewithnatasha.com for my website. If you want to scroll around, check out my freebies, my programs, and everything in between.
Thank you, Natasha.
For you, the listener, I would love to know what is something that you could take away from this. What's one nugget that you can implement this week? It doesn't have to be everything. It could just be one thing. Even if it was just like, I don't have to put makeup on to get on video. I'd love to know what your one shift is. You can leave us a comment on the podcast, and I will link to all of your links in the show notes.
Natasha, thank you so much for listening and for showing up. Thank you.