Ep. 84: Reverse Interview with Listener Allie!

By: Cassy Joy Garcia
Fed & Fit
Fed & Fit

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On today's show, Fed & Fit listener Allie joins me on the show to talk about how to launch a successful blog, design a brand, take food photos, and develop a community of readers.


We're back with our 84th episode of the Fed+Fit Podcast! Remember to check back every Monday for a new episode and be sure to subscribe on iTunes!

Find us HERE on iTunes and be sure to “subscribe.”

Episode 84 Links

  • Check out Aaptiv HERE and be sure to use the code “FEDANDFIT” at checkout for a FREE 30-days!
  • Check out Siete Tortillas HERE!
  • Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind cookbook HERE!
  • Check out my favorite mobile photo editing app Snapseed HERE.

Episode 84 Transcription

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Cassy Joy: Welcome back to another episode of the Fed and Fit podcast. Today, I’m thrilled to bring you yet another reader; or listener, I guess we should say, reverse interview. These reverse interviews, of course, are when Fed and Fit listeners write in with really great questions, and I invite them to come on a phone with me! We record the call, they ask me their awesome questions, we get to have a really fun conversation, and then publish it to the podcast with the hopes that other folks out there listening; either they have the same questions and they can definitely benefit from this conversation we’re going to have, or maybe it brings up some things that some of you guys have never thought of before.

So I’m really excited today to welcome the lovely Allie. She lives in Ames, Iowa, and she is a graduate student there studying student affairs and higher education, which is really cool, because that is actually my youngest sister, Samantha; that’s exactly what she got her graduate degree in, as well. Allie, I believe you said that you listened to that Fed and Fit college student mini-series we did here on the podcast a while ago. But it’s definitely a passion project of mine; I love working with higher education students, so welcome to the show! I cannot wait to jump into all your questions.

Allie: Thank you! I’m so excited to be here. I’m excited as well.

Cassy Joy: {laughs} Awesome! Well, what’s on your mind, girl? Is there anything you want to share with folks before we jump into some of the things you’ve got jotted down?

Allie: Yeah, definitely. So, I’ll just touch on a little bit of a background of how I got these questions, because otherwise they don’t make a lot of sense of where I’m starting from.

Cassy Joy: {laughs} Awesome.

Allie: So, I grew up definitely a healthy lifestyle; my mom was a marathoner, my dad was a weight lifter. So they were definitely in the fitness realm, kind of always eating healthy awareness. But I was very unreceptive to it; of course, like a typical little kid, I feel like I was that rebel child who didn’t want to believe what mom and dad were saying. So I kind of didn’t really fall into that realm; until I was 16 years old and got diagnosed with PCOS; polycystic ovarian syndrome for those who don’t know. Again, at 16, it’s kind of like; ok, well I’m not going to listen to the doctors. They suggested making changes in your diet and starting exercise, but my friends were also eating pizza, and I wanted to eat pizza too. {laughs} So that’s kind of the mentality that I took going into it.

And then in college, I started dabbling a little bit in working out. I wasn’t all that continuous with it, kind of a little flighty with the eating and what not. I mean; it’s crazy when you come into college and everything; you have 24-hour pizza bars and 24 hours of all of this stuff that’s kind of there, sitting for you, to tempt you a little bit. So I didn’t really focus on working out or good eating until about sophomore year, and my parents decided to open a Crossfit gym. They had become really involved with the Crossfit community, and really started looking more into the paleo eating, so that was a really big turning point for me. From that point forward I started crossfitting a little bit more; I learned kind of how to cook. I started following recipes, learning what flavors went together and those kind of little details.

Slowly but surely I started running, started crossfitting, and started eating pretty much strictly paleo. And I saw incredible changes in both my physical health, and my mental health, and my mental ability to just focus on school. Which was huge for me, because I had notoriously been an insomniac; I was up all night, I was just not able to ever focus on things for too long. So I started to see these changes, and I kind of was like; “Oh wow! Maybe there is something behind this.”

So I started really wanting to figure out more; like, are college students knowing this; do college students know this? Am I the only one out there? So I did a lot of research, and I was looking for college students that are eating paleo, and looking and seeing; is anyone else doing this or am I the only one? And I really didn’t find all that many people out there that were doing this paleo thing while trying to balance the college life. I mean, people assume paleo, that it’s super expensive and you have to have all these facets and kitchen gadgets to do it. So I really started following you and Juli and Diane and Lexi and all of these paleo bloggers that were definitely my inspiration. I kind of saw this gap out there; I was like, hmm. Well I’m interested; this is maybe something I could do for kids or students who are my age and really are thinking, well I really want to get healthy but it’s too difficult. It’s too hard for me to do that.

Kind of where I’m coming from is I’m really interested in potentially filling that gap and starting a blog or a forum for students that can be like, “Ok, this isn’t as hard.” Walking people through it and having the recipes that are super easy to make, maybe for one individual if you’re living alone, or two individuals, or something along those lines. So that’s kind of where my background is. {laughs} Very exasperated.

Cassy Joy: So cool! I mean, what a great story, Allie, thank you for sharing that. I think that’s something; you might be surprised, Allie, by how many people really relate to that. I’m sure we’ll get to this point again; my guess is {laughs} through some of your questions that, my guess is you’ve got written down. I don’t actually know or remember them. But I think; before we end this show, I’m going to tell you that you must start a blog. I mean, just so you know; prepare yourself. {laughs} I’m going to not be shy about that. But I bet you’re going to find in blogging that a lot of folks are really going to be thankful that you’re putting yourself out there. And it could be a really, really great community for people who identify with your story. So that’s wonderful; thank you for sharing it.

Allie: Yeah, not a problem. So I think my first initial question is kinds of more along the lines of; where to begin. The blogging kind of field seems so all encompassing. Again, I follow a lot of paleo bloggers who are very successful in this industry, and kind of I see on Snapchat and on Instagram and on Facebook and you also run your blog and you do these fashion posts; and it’s kind of like, I want to… I go to sit down at my computer, and I’m like, “Ok, I’m going to do this!” And then it’s like, “OK, I should start an Instagram! I need to have my email! I need to have this, and this, and this.” So it’s kind of more along the lines of; where do you start. Where did you start? Where’s the best place to begin this whole process, or is it kind of just a gradual outline.

Cassy Joy: What a good question! That’s so funny because I actually have been thinking; just so you know, before I give you my answer. That feeling of, “I want to do it all right now and I have no idea what to do next.” That feeling never goes away. {laughs} Ever!

Allie: {laughs}

Cassy Joy: That never goes away. I feel like that almost on a daily basis, because the more you get into this work, the more opportunities show up and the more you can do with it, like a fashion column, and a beauty column, you know? So those things are curiosity points, and you know that folks are interested in it, but you also have to figure out; I want to do it all right now! Just like I want to do a video series right now, and I want to get the Project; online Project up and running 12 months ago. {laughs} You know? So that feeling never goes away.

I say, when it comes to any task management, and I’ll drill down on blogs in just a second to specifically answer your question. But I think with any task management, and this is a “no-duh” thing; I’m sure you do this in other areas of your life. It’s just something that you can apply to the creative new venture process, as well. And that is; write down… now, maybe people, maybe the true-blood type B people out there are going to be like, “I’ve never done that.” {laughs} But if you’ve got any type A in you, I feel like this might be something you identify with. But I would say sit down; the activity is write everything down that you want to do that you’ve brain stormed, as a curiosity point or a passion point for you in this blog. And that can be line items like, choose a name, if you don’t already have one; register the URL, set up an Instagram, set up some sort of a content calendar, draft a few blog posts. Gosh; who knows what else. Start experimenting with recipes. Come up with X new number of recipes. Things like that.

Write all those line items down, and then I would go back through and I would number them by importance. Right? And it kind of becomes easier to see that process once you’ve got it on paper. At least speaking from personal experience. When I’m trying to organize my thoughts that are just in my head, I have this impossible time trying to remember, “Oh yeah, I actually have to register the URL before I can get a blog post up.” Which sounds so silly, but I’ve had those moments before. So writing it down on paper sometimes helps me really streamline those efforts so you’re not constantly stopping. And it’s like the stuttered start, you know? Because that feeling is pretty exhausting, when you just feel like you’re constantly facing walls and facing decisions on, “What should I do next? What should I do now?” You’ve kind of got it outlined so you can just follow; you can tip over a domino and just see where they go.

So I say that’s a really good thing to do with any creative process, or any new venture. Write all the things down that you want to do, and then number them. And then if you’re extra type A; {laughs} like yours truly, then you rewrite that list in priority order so that it just becomes a nice, easy, go down, cross it off, and you can take a deep breath because you’ve already made the decisions on what to do next, you just have to do it. Right? Because doing it is the fun and easy part, but trying to figure out; “Is it the right thing to do? Is this is the right time?” Speaking again from personal experience; that’s when things are exhausting. When I just don’t know when or how I’m going to do it.

So, when it comes to the blog. I think; in all blogging formats, content is king. Now what I mean by that is, getting out there and writing; whether you’re publishing recipes or whether you're writing a “5 tips to stocking your healthy dorm room”, or whether you’re writing a “5 tips to eating healthy on campus.” Whatever that is, or how to set up a healthy workout schedule with your campus rec system. Something like that. Choosing class times; a class schedule that will set yourself up for a really healthy balanced college schedule. Take those biggest burning questions that you think people have; or those biggest pain points that you went through in college, answering some of those questions. The nuggets of information that you think, “Gosh, that would have been so helpful!” and turn those each into a blog post. Whether that is a new recipe, or whether that is a how-to. Turn those into a blog post.

But you don’t just turn around a write a dozen blog posts overnight. {laughs} So what you do, just like the other; is write down those blog post ideas, and choose; if you want to start off small, just to kind of work your way up, then I would write one a week, and stick to a schedule. So every Monday, you put up a new post. So content is king. Having valuable content on your website gives people a reason to seek you and find you, and then trust you as a resource. Right? I blogged for 5 full years before I actually had anything additional, versus what was free on the website, to sell. And the reason why eventually when I wrote a book and eventually developed a program, I think people were interested in that because they’d spent 5 years consuming this stuff that I was putting out there; this content that I was putting out there, and I had eventually earned their trust.

So, it’s kind of a; it’s a very, very long lead kind of job, and knowing that going in. knowing that you’re going to do it just because you have a huge heart for the topic, and just because you want to help people is the reason to do it. I did not start a blog because I wanted to be a full time blogger. I started my blog because I wanted to answer these questions for people. It’s almost; I have a heavy heart even talking about it right now, because it’s still so true and so significant. I still blog just because I want to help, and I want to get as many answers out there as possible. I just want to give everybody a big ol' virtual hug, because I think that’s what folks really need.

So, I think that understanding that content is king; the rest of it you can take a deep breath about. You don’t have to do beauty; you don’t have to do fashion. You really don’t even have to do recipes, but recipes can be really easy content when you get to that point. But getting some stuff up there on the blog. So what do you need in order to get your first content pieces up? Well, you need a URL, and you need a name. Now, know that those two things can change. You can change those in the future. So you’re not sealing your fate by saying I want it to be AllieinIowa.com. {laughs}

Allie: {laughs} Oh lord, no.

Cassy Joy: Well, obviously. But, I mean maybe not obviously, I don’t know. It’s got a nice ring to it. {laughing} But you know what I mean, you really can change your name. I never changed my name; but I don’t know, I’m a painfully loyal person. I’m that person, I’ve been crossfitting at this one Crossfit gym in San Antonio for 8 years now. And I pass; I don’t know, a dozen Crossfit gyms on my way to Crossfit, but I will never give up on that; those are my people. So that’s just my loyal, Labrador type personality. {laughs} I just stick with something. But plenty of people rebrand themselves as time goes on.

I’m sitting here looking at; this is the longest answer ever to your very simple question, I apologize. But, I’m sitting here looking at this coffee mug on my desk right now, and it’s the Siete tortilla family; are you familiar with them?

Allie: Yeah!

Cassy Joy: If anybody listening is not familiar with them, you should definitely look them up, they make these phenomenal paleo-friendly tortillas, and they’re usually sold in the refrigerator section at Whole Foods or you can order them online. And they’re just this fabulous family. So I went to this Siete dinner back at PaleoFx this past spring in Austin, Texas. And they gave us these Yeti mugs that have the Siete brand on it. And when I invited two of the Siete siblings to come on my podcast, I asked them for business advice, because a lot of people on this show are curious about it. And one of the things he said; because they changed their name. They started off as, the first name they started off with was “Must be Nutty”. Because they had almond flour tortillas. Then they changed their branding almost mid-stream to Siete. They were successful as Must be Nutty, and then they got more data points, and they decided at a certain point that they would shift gears. They have a new name; they have a new logo; it’s really slick. But you don’t always come off out of the gates with the perfect idea. The important thing is to just start.

So, all this to be said, in summary to your very eloquent, simple question and my rambling answer is; I say if you don’t already have a name, just go with the one that you’ve got right now, get the URL registered. You can go to Go-Daddy.com to get it registered. And then go to WordPress.org if you haven’t already done this, and download one of their free templates. WordPress.org over WordPress.com; because on the .org open source platform, it actually allows you more flexibility down the line. That’s one of those things I wish I had known back then. So, go with the .org; install one of their free templates; or you can get a paid template, but there’s no need, they have lovely free ones. And then you just get started! It doesn’t have to be beautiful; go ugly early. I say that a lot on here. But get your first post up, get your little “Hello world” post up, and then just start rolling. Do one post a week and see where it goes.

After that; after you get the blog post up, then start the social media account, and start sharing the things that you’re doing on your website. But ultimately, in the world of content you really want your website to be home base for everything. So if you’ll notice, across my social media platforms, I’m always trying to direct people back to my website. Right? So Instagram; I try to post stuff. I mean, I post silly things. I mean, obviously by posting a picture of Gus, there’s no landing page for Gus, my dog, on my website. But if I’m posting something; pieces of a recipe I’m making, or like today’s fashion post, for example, what I’m trying to do is give people a snippet of it so they feel like they’re getting some value out of that social media post, but ultimately, if they want more, I’m redirecting them to the website. So same thing goes for Facebook live posts; I’m redirecting people to the website. Snapchat is just a barrel of fun and totally silly, but every once in a while I try to remember to tell people what I’m doing on the website. So, that is my very long answer; I hope it was helpful.

Allie: Oh my gosh, definitely! I love it. And I think that says a lot about the scheduling and taking it in small bites. Because you see all the things that you want to do, and you’re like; oh my gosh, I have to do it all! I’m so excited about doing it all! And definitely the numbering aspect is beautiful for us type A individuals.

Cassy Joy: {laughs} Oh good, I’m glad to know I’m not alone!

Allie: Yeah!

Cassy Joy: Definitely. It’s a game changer, Allie, it really, really is. And I learn this lesson the hard way constantly; so don’t be like me. I’m a very slow learner when it comes to some stuff. So I think if you write it down, all the things that you want to do. Because it’s true; when it comes to the possibilities of starting your own business; I mean, you can be like a kid in the candy shop. You’re like; oh my gosh, look at all this stuff I can and want to do. There is still so much with my business that I; I mean, I identify so much with where you’re at, Allie, because there’s so much that I want to do. That I’m almost blinded by the things that I am doing because of all these things that I want to do. So a way to stay present and appreciate the moment and really celebrate the current successes, I think, is to put those; it’s good to have visions, and it’s good to have goals, but put them on a calendar so you’re not worried about whether you should be doing them, when you should be doing them. Because you’ve already got it scheduled. And then you can just do the work and enjoy the ride.

Allie: Yeah, definitely. Kind of going along that; the other question I have is, working with; so I come from a higher education background a little bit, so I’m very familiar with the idea of branding and making sure that things are kind of consistent across all boards. So I was wondering; I know when I go to Fed and Fit, you have these beautiful banners on top and your cute little; I don’t even know what they are, the shapes with colors. They look like the gummies that you did; I don’t know what else to compare them to.

Cassy Joy: {laughing}

Allie: That sounds so weird! But somewhere along the lines, do you recommend this; getting a banner, one fell swoop, asking someone to do it, and then going at it or just kind of; I know you talked a little bit about just going in feet first diving in, but is that something that’s worth my time up front, and then I can focus on the content and more of that along the lines?

Cassy Joy: Yeah, you can. So there’s really no right answer to this question. Another very good question. There’s really no one right answer. I’m sure if you ask certain folks, you’re going to get certain answers from them, but in my opinion, I don’t’ really have a solid direction. You can go either way. So let’s break it up into two routes, right? Route number one is you just get started. And you buy one of those free templates, and your header on the website is just your name. Or whatever name you’ve chosen; it’s just text. You’ve typed it into the template. So let’s say you get half a dozen blog posts up, and you kind of feel like you’ve got that habit built, and you’re feeling comfortable with the content piece of it, then add something else on top of that. And maybe that something else is looking for a graphic designer to help you bring a logo to life.

And then you get the logo up, and you get that installed on your website, and you're still billing content, and now you’re kind of handling two things. You’ve got content going first, because that’s priority number one, right? And now you’ve also got some branding ideas, and you’re going to start sharing that across some of your social media channels, and you feel like you’re picking up speed a little bit, and then you can add something else on top of that, and maybe that is doing some little videos on Instagram live, or Instagram stories. Gosh, I always get those names mixed up!

But you know what I mean? I think that’s option A. you get the content up first, and then; because. Because; and this is the reason why I slate that as option A/probably preferable in my book. Because you may learn things about your brand that you wouldn’t have known if you hadn’t already started interacting with an audience, right? So when I started Fed and Fit, I created my first logo in PowerPoint, of all things. Which, to be honest, is still probably the place where I turn to the most for graphic stuff, because I just don’t understand the other graphic tools. Lexi Kornblum, which we’ve already mentioned of Lexi’s Clean Kitchen, has tried so patiently to teach me in design. But again, I’m a slow learner. So I created my first logo in PowerPoint, and I used fonts that I downloaded online. It was very swoopy and girly, and I realized in my work that I actually wanted to be a little bit more colorful, and a little bit more educational, you know. Almost kind of take that teacher spin on things. So that’s kind of where; when I worked with a designer for my new website; this is two and a half years ago that I launched this website. But I knew I wanted something colorful and I knew I wanted a simple design, and that’s where we came up with the hexagon. I sent her honeycomb as some of my inspiration; but I wouldn’t have thought of that if I hadn’t already started interacting with people.

So the reason why I say maybe it’s a good idea to start on the content and then start dreaming up branding is that ideas may come to you of how your content is different. And really what does set it apart, and how can branding; how can a logo and the design of that logo compliment the community that you’re building.

Now, option B is the exact opposite of that. Option B says your brand and your name and the logo and everything can help dictate/lead your community. Right? So it’s just two different schools of thought, and I say go with your gut here. Whichever one you feel the most strongly driven to, then go with that one. Like I said, there’s no one right answer. It could be that you have a very clear vision. Maybe you are one of those trueborn incredible leaders that you’ve got it already pictured in your brain. You just need somebody to draw it for you. You know? And if that’s the case, go for it. I can put you in touch with some great graphic designers that are really lovely and wonderful to work with. Go with that, and then pick the design and get that up and then get the blog rolling. There’s really no one right way. I did the first, but that was because I didn’t really know how Fed and Fit was going to evolve. So I hope that’s helpful.

Allie: Most definitely, it is. The next question I have is kind of more along the lines in that realm of photography. I feel like it’s the never ending question with startup industry. So, editing, I have absolutely no clue if photos need to be edited before you put them up. I’m in the Midwest so it’s dark at like 4:30 now a days; so how do you find the ability to make sure you’re getting good photos that don’t look like they were taken on a little Polaroid item, while still finding that balance between the sunshine and the editing and all of those things?

Cassy Joy: Oh, what a good question. Again, my heart goes out to you, because oh man. Speaking of going ugly early; Allie, have you; I’ve told people about it on the podcast before, but in case you ever want to feel really good about your photography skills, you should look up my old-old posts. Because {laughs} they are really, really bad. For the most part, I remembered to go outside and take photos, but I have plenty of posts up there that were taken at 9 p.m. via the light from the oven vent. {laughs}

Allie: {laughs}

Cassy Joy: So, I’m thinking of one in particular. It’s this grilled pineapple and goat cheese appetizer, and if you type “grilled pineapple” into the search bar on my website, it will come up and you guys can all get a good laugh at me. So, photography. There are some very, very basic things that can make a huge difference. First and foremost; when it comes to equipment, you actually; do you have any special equipment right now?

Allie: Not really. I have have/stole my parent’s good camera that they never use, so I have that. Thanks mom and dad.

Cassy Joy: Awesome. Yeah, thanks mom and dad. That’s how I got started. My dad had this gorgeous DSLR camera, and I was living with them at the time, and he was just tickled that I wanted to borrow it. That’s definitely how I got started. And now, to be honest, my camera is still one model less than his. What we’ve started doing is he buys the fancier camera, and then he gives me his hand me down, or I buy it from it. But it’s just turned into this really funny thing that he always has the super nice model, and I’m the happy to get the leftovers. {laughs}

Anyways; so when it comes to equipment, you have a really cool camera, but if someone is listening, you actually don’t need a fancy camera. You iPhone, if you have an iPhone; maybe you have an Android. These mobile devices that we have today take phenomenal photos. They take better photos than the equipment was out in some of the best cameras 10-15 years ago. So know that you have all the capabilities probably with your mobile phone. There are sometimes actually that in a photo shoot for a recipe, I will take out my phone, because I think my phone is better at taking photos in low-light situations than my DSLR is. So know that you’re probably great with your phone. My friend Vanessa Barajas, I think she’s fine with me saying this {laughs} but she’s the blogger behind Clean Eating With a Dirty Mind, and until she came out with her book and started photographing for her book, which is also called Clean Eating With a Dirty Mind; awesome paleo friendly baking recipes. But she used to take all of her blog photos with her phone. Amazing.

Ok, so, equipment aside. When it comes to editing photos; before we edit, we need to make sure where we’re taking our photos is strategic. So if you have natural light, that’s definitely preferable. Next to a window, so you kind of get those cool, sometimes moody shadows where it’s a little bit lighter on one side of the plate, darker on the other one, you know. That’s kind of how you get those. If you take a photo where the window is kind of behind the dish, and the dish is between you and the window I guess, that’s where you get those sort of backlit photos that can be really cool, and ethereal looking. So you kind of play around with the lighting, but natural light is ideal. What I will do when I’m taking food photos is I run around my house, and I turn off any artificial light in my house that could be casting some sort of a yellow glow on the food area. So I take a lot of pictures on my kitchen table, my little dinette area, and I’ll make sure that my kitchen light is off when I’m taking those photos. That allows the more natural, which is bluer toned, lights to come through. You really want food to be taken in a bluish tone colored light, and that’s to mimic more daylight.

If you don’t have daylight available, which sometimes we don’t at this time of year, then there are a lot of people who take photos with artificial lights. A lot of professional photographers prefer artificial light, because it’s more consistent; they know exactly what they’re going to get. Just do some Googling and you can get some of those light boxes; those light kits that have a more natural look, a natural light kit, and that can help you in that regard.

And then lastly, for editing; you can get fancy or you don’t have to get fancy. There are some people who don’t edit their photos. They take a lot of pride in that. There are some people who just take beautiful pictures, and then they load them. And they say; this is it. This is what you get. I personally edit all of my photos. If I’m doing it on a mobile device, which you absolutely can, you can download; my favorite editor app is called Snap Seed. And it’s just a mobile little photo editing app and it allows you to adjust everything; the brightness, the contrast, the shadows, the highlights, all that good stuff. You can adjust those on the photo and then save it back to your camera roll. And then for actual computer based photo editing, I do use Light Room. I probably use 5% of Light Room’s true capabilities. It’s an Adobe Photoshop product, and it’s really great. And the only things that I adjust in my photos are; I’m looking at a photo so I can tell you correctly; I’ll adjust the exposure, sometimes I’ll adjust the contrast; I’ll up the clarity to kind of help make it a little bit more granular, and then sometimes I’ll up the vibrance, which is a trick I learned from the Pioneer Woman. But that’s it, super simple. So I hope that’s helpful.

Allie: Yes.

Cassy Joy: Ideally, just try to shoot in natural light, experiment with camera angles and lenses. Now as far as camera settings; to be honest you guys, I’m not a pro at camera settings. I put them; this is going to make real photographers shudder. But I put my camera in auto mode. I put it in auto, and I turn off the flash. That is my secret; that’s all I do.

Allie: {laughs} that was such a camera pun, what you said.

Cassy Joy: Did I really; what did I say?

Allie: Yeah, you said, make all the photographers shudder. {laughs}

Cassy Joy: Oh my gosh! {laughing} I’m so punny and I didn’t even know it. {laughs} You're the best, Allie.

Allie: I’m trying not to cackle back here.

Cassy Joy: Oh my gosh. That’s so funny. So yeah, does that kind of help answer some of your questions?

Allie: Yeah, most definitely. I’m now all excited and giddy.

Cassy Joy: Good! Good. Well we’re coming up towards the end of the show; do you have any, do you have one last question you want to round out with?

Allie: Sure. Kind of an all encompassing one; how do you get readers? How do you get that baseline, and where do you put your information out there so that people can see it?

Cassy Joy: It’s the most; it’s the worst kind of answer to give you and also the best, so brace yourself. How do you get readers? That’s a question that I know a lot of people want to know. Honestly, I don’t know. {laughing} I don’t know! I really; there’s, I don’t have a game plan. It’s not something that I think about, I just, like I said before, content is king. What I try to do is I keep my ear to the ground. When I say that, I say that a lot. And what I visualize is putting my ear on like a train track to see if I can hear a train coming, like in an old cartoon. Anyway, bear with me. Or don’t mind my analogies.

But I keep my ear to the ground, and I try to listen for questions that people have. And those questions might be; gosh, what the world really needs right now is a gluten free chocolate cream pie. You know, or whatever it is. And I hear that, and I say; I can do that! I can deliver that answer. So I do, I create it, and I make sure it’s excellent, and I test it a whole bunch, and then I take pretty photos and then I put it on my blog. And then I’m like; hey world, here’s this gluten free chocolate cream pie. I hope you love it. And people who had that need, and had that question can go find it; and if they try it, and they like it, then I earn a little bit of their trust, then maybe they’ll come back and want to try more, you know. And then maybe that happens three, four; a dozen, two dozen; a hundred times. And that’s when you really develop a true member of your tribe, is someone who is like, “Yes! We are birds of a feather!”

The people who are Fed and Fit readers, just like yourself, there’s probably very, very little that I tell you that you don’t already know. You know? I mean, yeah, there may be some science-y things. There may be some tricks on how to take food photos. But at the end of the day, we’re all birds of a feather. All the listeners here; we sit around and we nod in agreement. You know? And I consider myself really just the pointy tip of this Fed and Fit spear in trying to develop and answer these questions and develop these recipes and build these programs that the tribe really wants. So I don’t know how you get readers; all I do is try to answer questions that are out there, and then all of a sudden they find you. And the better quality your content is the more likely they’re going to want to stay around.

Allie: Yeah, definitely. That makes sense. Really coming back to the content is king kind of thing; that’s what everyone is there for.

Cassy Joy: Yeah; exactly! It’s not; people really, I mean, I understand that folks don’t care about my musings for the most part. They really don’t. But if I’m able to contribute something of value, then that might be a reason to be my virtual friend. I don’t know; I think of everybody in the Fed and Fit tribe as, we’re all, just like I said, we’re all just a big family. But that might be a reason to stick around; I provided something of value that they were able to use in a valuable way in their life.

Allie: Yeah, definitely.

Cassy Joy: So, awesome. Allie, you are just so great! Thank you for asking these wonderful questions. I hope; actually, I’m sure it was helpful to other listeners here, so thanks for coming on the show today.

Allie: Yeah, thank you so much for having me. It was a blast.

Cassy Joy: It was, it was great! This is a great way to break up my day of cooking! {laughs}

Allie: Yeah definitely.

Cassy Joy: Awesome. Well thanks everybody for listening. Remember that as always you can find a full transcript of today’s show in the show notes on https://FedandFit.com where you can listen to the episode there. You can also, of course, subscribe to us in iTunes. And if you like the show, I highly encourage you to leave a review there in iTunes. It really helps the show prosper and do well. So thanks everybody for joining us; we will be back again next week.


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  1. Morgan Acker says:

    Thank you for this podcast! I’m already a fan girl , but this was awesome! I started to post my recipes for family and friends and I have really enjoyed it so I started an instagram and am starting to develop more content and this was just awesome so thanks again (I’ll probably say thanks too much haha) I’m learning new things all the time and still feel like I have multiple questions everyday! I am a full time teacher so I take my pictures at night after I make dinner and I’m excited for the phone app you gave because some pictures are horrible and I like that you can add text to it and it’s cute text! Okay I could go on and on thanks for keeping me entertained on snapchat and spreading joy!

    1. Cassy says:

      Thank YOU for your awesome comment!! Keep up the great work, girl!

  2. Kayla says:

    Hi Cassy! I love your podcasts and whenever I need a boost in motivation I go back and re listen! I recently went back to an older podcast where you and Charissa talked about starting a book club. I know you are one busy lady but any thoughts on starting one??

    1. Cassy says:

      I totally forgot about that!! Let’s do it. I need something to pull me away from these true crime podcasts 😉 Any book suggestions to get started?

    2. Kayla says:

      I’m all about the true crime podcasts right now! Listening to My Favorite Murder! I don’t have any specifics in mind besides all the ones I’m sure everyone’s read- The Loving Diet, Eat the Yolks, etc. I did notice Robb Wolf’s new book will be out in March. Or something more along the lines of Gretchen Ruben’s books and creating healthy habits