Taking The Content Crown

by | 30 Nov 2021

Your hairy godmother of all things content marketing, Ben Lifton of Content Kweens, is BACK with more useful insight into effective comms strategies, and content tips you can be implementing right now…

 

After going down a storm at SELF/STYLED Sunday, we wanted to know more about how Content Kweens founder, Ben Lifton, found his niche to help educate thousands of hairdressers to improve their marketing and content creation. He started out as a Saturday boy himself in a salon, before transitioning to work in digital roles for corporate brands, including working for Jamie Oliver’s namesake brand, where he honed his skills on capturing eye-catching content and delivering impactful messaging.

Content Kweens is a return to his roots, his own content marketing business designed to empower hairdressers to boost both their engagement and income with his focused, expert advice. He spilled the tea on the biggest mistakes he sees all. the. time, as well as sharing the simple switch you can make to boost your engagement.

Q: When did you realise that digital was THE medium to focus on? 

Ben Lifton: I grew up in the era of Myspace, AOL dial-up and Bebo… If those weren’t indicators of what was gonna happen with the world then I don’t know what is! I always remember, in any corporate job I had, the amount of time that was spent on printing things (books, magazines, flyers)… I always pitched for us to do things digitally, because then there’s no printing fees, no long lead times; digital can be pretty much instantaneous. Yes, there’s a horrendously dark side to the digital world, but as a small business owner I have to look at the positive sides to digital – and Jesus wept there are endless positives to being a digital-focused company.

 

Q: How did you go about building your freelance business?

BL: My main objective with launching Content Kweens was to build a fully automated, digital education platform. I focused on a LOT of market research to make sure my courses answer problems that freelancers and content creators in the hair and beauty industry have. I tried, tested, retested AND retried multiple course options/platforms/systems until I found the perfect fit for my students’ needs. 

Q: What are the three biggest mistakes that you see freelancers doing over and over and over?

BL: These come up time and again…

  1. Spending too much time working IN their business, not working ON their business. My top tip for this is to think about every client that you have in your chair each day. That is a FREE model for you. A free model that you can create pictures and videos out of. Those pictures and videos are the content that you use to promote your amazing skills to the world with. By doing this, you’re simultaneously working IN and ON your business: WIN/WIN!
  2. Prioritising learning all of the new colour methods and not investing into learning how to market them. A lot of the time freelancers aren’t taught how to market themselves in the early years of their career. It’s something you have to self-learn. Yes, there’s always gonna be a million new courses being flogged on how to do colouring techniques, but if you can’t create an engaging video or image out of that new colour technique, then how are you gonna promote that service? How will people know to ask for it? #RhetorialQuestion.
  3. Not prioritising perceived value. This is basically how you portray yourself to prospective clients. By being active on social media, posting engaging content and having solid systems in place to ensure a smooth user experience for booking or shopping with you… it’s these things that allow you to charge the higher prices. If you have a clunky booking system and aren’t posting aspirational content on your socials, then you’re merely blending in with the rest – so why would anyone want to fork out the big bucks for you?! I make sure all my students think about the holistic vision of their brand, not just the aesthetics of Instagram. If the brand provides a seamless user experience, the clients WILL pay a higher fee!

 

Q: What is one simple change that freelancers can undertake to make a marked improvement with engagement? 

BL: Learn to invest. You really do have to spend money to make money. I’ve invested my life savings into building my business, because I believe in it and I know that my courses help freelancers to build a successful business they dream of. Stop looking for free information, because that “free” info is really costing you something… your time. And also, get a good therapist! Or a business coach. Everyone needs someone trusted to talk things out with.

Q: What can people expect from your new mini courses?

BL: To be well and truly edu-tained! Hair and beauty marketing can feel completely overwhelming, especially when you’re competing for attention with so many other beauty professionals. But nobody taught you this stuff… Until now! I teach every aspect of content creation, all as one course (inside my signature Content Creators Camp) or separately as individual self-paced online courses. So if you’re a whiz at photos but need serious help on your video game, you can pick and mix the help you need to get to your next level, whatever that looks like. Oh, and obviously you have both lifetime and immediate access to any of my courses – I know ya’ll are busy bees!

 

Q: What’s something that you think freelancers NEED to know?

BL: Find a good lawyer, invest into a good book keeping system, book yourself holidays and remember that you made this decision to build your own business – so bloody ENJOY IT! The highs can be thrilling, and the lows can be tough. So go with the motions. You need to stop believing that you have to sacrifice everything to get anything. Focus on spending time with friends who aren’t in the industry as well; you can have all the money in the world, but without friends you’re gonna be one lonely Lily. 

Read more about Ben’s appearance at SELF/STYLED Sunday here, or check out his courses on offer here.

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