Use Content Marketing To Create Boundaries With Your Clients #243

On this episode of The Know, Like & Trust Show, we dive into the importance of creating a boundary or filter to identify the right audience for you and your work. We emphasize the significance of working with people who align with our values and beliefs, and how a boundary helps avoid bad experiences and negative outcomes for both parties. 

On the content marketing side we’ll cover:

  1. Why you need to know your lane
  2. Lean into your core value work
  3. Using content to set boundaries and create the filter

The episode also delves into two stories: one about Bud Light and Kid Rock, and the other about Adobe Systems. The former focuses on the importance of public statements in marketing and the need to stay in one’s lane to handle negative backlash, while the latter highlights the importance of loyalty and knowing where the breaking point is. We also touch on building a positive working relationship with clients and understanding what factors would make it unacceptable. Tune in to learn more about sustainable and measurable content creation.

listen to this content

Listen to this episode on:

Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher | Google Play | Amazon Music | How To Subscribe

Highlights in this episode:

  • [00:00:06] Authentically Automate Your Marketing for Success
  • [00:02:54] Managing Mad Now Moments in Marketing
  • [00:04:28] Kid Rock Ditches Bud Light
  • [00:06:04] The Importance of Sticking to Your Lane
  • [00:10:46] Technical Support Fails and Viable Alternatives Arise
  • [00:12:28] Creating Better Client Relationships: Setting Boundaries
  • [00:16:48] Consider Another Perspective: Why Content Measurement Matters
  • [00:17:47] Believe in Your Authority Opinion or Fall
  • [00:19:11] Create your Content Boundaries for Better Engagement

As a content creator, you know that the internet is a vast and sprawling place. It can be tempting to cast a wide net and try to appeal to as many people as possible. However, it’s important to remember that not every person or business is a good fit for you. That’s where boundaries come in. Specifically, there are breaking points where a previously happy audience member unfollows you. This isn’t a bad thing, and we’re covering why using your content as a “best client” filter helps you set boundaries with clients.

Here are three key points to help create boundaries using your content:

1. Creating Intentional Marketing By Knowing Your Lane

Before you can create effective boundaries, you need to understand what your lane is. This means having a clear understanding of your focus, niche, and target audience. Are you a food blogger who specializes in vegan recipes? A business coach who works with small startups? A fashion influencer who focuses on vintage clothing? Whatever your specific area of expertise, it’s important to stay within it and not try to be everything to everyone. By being the go-to resource for a specific niche, you can establish yourself as an expert and attract the right audience.

knowing your lane on social media concept image

Beyond that, you need a value-based lane to stay in so you know where you stand culturally. A recent “ripped from the headlines” story about Anheuser-Busch (or BudLight in this case) and Kid Rock perfectly identifies what happens when you don’t stay in your lane. The BudLight marketing team chose a controversial spokesperson, which isn’t a new concept–Nike has done this for years with people and causes like Colin Kaepernick. But when there was outcry, their marketing team essentially got sacked and the higher-ups backtracked. This is not knowing your lane.

You have to share authority opinions

Putting out plant-a-flag statements, or authority opinions, is a must in today’s noisy world. This does two things:

  1. Separates you from the sea of sameness
  2. Tells your audience who you are and what you stand for–so they can decide if they want to be a part of your world.

What does Kid Rock’s viral video have to do with successful marketing strategies? Kid Rock definitely decided he no longer wanted to be a part of BudLight’s world. And he made a big stink about it. BudLight and Anheuser-Busch could have capitalized on this free marketing and leaned into a new customer base but instead backtracked. 

concept image of an oldtimer thinking about beer

Key Takeaway:

When you believe in something, you have to stand by it in your marketing.

But that’s the thing, isn’t it?

“Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.” Kaepernick said that, and it rings with truth and bravery. It’s also what the world wants to see in marketing today. They want to vote with their dollars more than ever before.

2. Use Core Values To Set Boundaries 

Your core values are the guiding principles that drive your life (and business) decisions. They are the non-negotiables that determine what you stand for and what you won’t tolerate. When you lean into your core value work, you can attract clients and customers who share the same values and beliefs. For example, if one of your core values is sustainability, you can create content focusing on eco-friendly products and practices. Doing so will create a loyal following of like-minded individuals who will appreciate your content and become loyal customers.

When you’re working on crafting your authority opinions, lean into your core value work for clarity. It helps you figure out what you care enough about to plant that flag. From there, you begin to incorporate it into your content plan, creating a filter that your best client easily passes through. This is how to set clear boundaries.

art of a woman sharing her opinion

3. Creating a Content Filter

One of the best ways to set boundaries and create a filter is using your content. By creating content that reflects your niche and appeals to your ideal audience, you can create a filter that helps weed out the wrong clients or customers. For example, if you message about the Black Lives Matter movement, that says something about you. If you talk about watching Fox News the other day, that also gives a clear answer about what you stand for and believe in.

Easter egg content helps build the know, like, and trust factor

You don’t need to create a separate video on your YouTube channel to do this–you can weave it into your regular content. I call these Easter eggs. Much like the easter eggs you’ll find in video games or certain holidays on the Google homepage, you can do this in your content. I talk about being a tea drinker often–and I also mention being a chicken mama, a mother of two boys, and a gardening enthusiast. 

Easter eggs don’t have to be heavy topics! The key is weaving in enough details that your audience can feel a relationship growing as they read your subject matter content. As Bob Burg said, “All things being equal, people do business with, and refer business to people they know, like and trust.” You’re using your content to increase those odds for the right people.

easter egg

Every interaction with clients is an opportunity to make them happy–and likewise every interaction with your audience is an opportunity to show them whether that’s a likelihood. That’s what the filter is about and why you want to intentionally create content.

Doing so will attract the right people and discourage those who don’t share your niche or whose needs don’t align with yours.

All things being equal, people do business with, and refer business to people they know, like and trust.”

Bob Burg

Why boundaries are both good for you and good for your audience

pick your lane

There are a ton of content strategists, just as there are immense numbers of freelancers and scads of dog trainers. You don’t want to, nor can you, work with everyone. To maintain a workload even 10% over your capacity will hurt both you and your clients. Using your content marketing as a filter to weed out the clients who aren’t a good fit for you–whether it’s from personality, needs, or working styles–serves you both. You get to focus more of your energy on the people you’re most effective at helping. And those that aren’t a good fit can refocus their time into finding someone who is.

It’s a win-win situation when you employ content to do this job for you, because it saves you both the time of a sales call or failed project. 

In conclusion, creating boundaries using your content is key to attracting the right clients or customers and establishing yourself as an expert in your field–and should be a part of your overall content strategy as a solo-ish service provider online. By focusing on your niche, leaning into your core value work, and using content to set boundaries and create a filter, you can establish yourself as an authority and attract the right people to your business. Remember, it’s not about pleasing everyone–it’s about creating the best possible experience for you and your ideal customers.

Do you need help creating a content marketing plan that allows you to shine?

We offer complimentary one-on-one consults to help determine if a done-with-you or done-for-you approach is best for you and your business right now.

Music by Michael De La Torre. Thanks, Mikey!

Related Articles

  • Short Form to Long Form: Maximizing Your Content Library for SEO Benefits

    Short Form to Long Form: Maximizing Your Content Library for SEO Benefits

    Repurposing Short-Form Content Into Long-Form Content Hey there, fellow service providers! A few weeks ago, I promised to discuss a slightly unconventional topic – transforming a library of short-form content into long-form pieces. While I usually focus on repurposing long-form content into shorter formats, this question emerged during the Social Search Summit, where I participated…


  • Maximize Your Content: AI Tools for Smart Repurposing Strategies

    Maximize Your Content: AI Tools for Smart Repurposing Strategies

    How To Create More Time For Your Life Without Compromising Your Business Your business should support your life, not the other way around. I’ve been spending quite a bit of time on non-content-related activities lately, like painting and gardening. I’m exploring acrylics, oil pastels, and mixed media on canvas, and I’m absolutely loving it. I…


  • Authority Opinions: Building Authority & Impactful Content Creation

    Authority Opinions: Building Authority & Impactful Content Creation

    Before I delve into this topic, let me say that I’ve discussed authority content before – three years ago, to be precise. And while I still stand by that episode on crafting an authority opinion, I believe it’s time to add to it. So let’s dive into building authority opinions, why we create them, and…