Content creation doesn’t have to be hard. Sometimes we thing content creation has to be done a specific way, but that process or method is challenging for us, so we just don’t do it. Instead of giving up, I encourage you to think outside of the box, and look for ways around the challenging part instead of letting it stop you from moving forward.
Many people find blogging and content creation to be hard in the beginning – they don’t know what to write about, they *hate* writing, they’re worried about grammar, someone else has already written about the topic, etc.
Steps for easier content creation
Have a clear goal – If you’re using your blog for business, then your blog posts needs to have a point – a clear goal. This is not the place for rambling 4-am thoughts after a wild night of Cards Against Humanity with your besties. When thinking of a topic for your next blog post or lead magnet or video or whatever, be sure to think it through first. You need to be able to explain what’s in it for your audience (WIIFT) and what’s in it for you (WIIFM). Without both, it might be best to put that topic on the back burner until you have more clarity for your goal. Do you want your content to educate your audience, to entertain them, to inform them about a product or service (yours or someone else’s), or to encourage them to buy/sign up for something? Or is it something else? Think about what transformation you want your audience to have after consuming your content and keep that in mind while creating the content.
You don’t need to write a novel, or even a research paper – Especially in the beginning, it’s more important to actually be creating content than it is to worry about having the perfect length. For many who are just starting out, the thought of writing a 1,000-word post is nerve-wracking and becomes a giant stumbling block that prevents them from ever doing it, so don’t worry about your word count in the beginning. The more content you create, the easier it will be for you to do it, and for you to create longer content.
Once you get more comfortable creating content, you should aim for creating longer content, as search engines do seem to prefer that 1,000 words is about 7-8 minutes of spoken word. Think of a 10-ish minute conversation with a friend, or things you find yourself often repeating to or answering for your customers, and use that.
Write first and edit later – Don’t aim for perfection on the first go. There’s a reason our English teachers in school forced us to turn in rough drafts – because they are an important part of the writing process.
I’ve used all different ways to write blog posts and create content. Sometimes I just open a new blog post and write. Sometimes I just save the blog post title or idea as a draft post to come back to later, and sometimes I add some bullet points or ideas to the draft post before saving. The idea is to get the ideas out of your head and saved for later, when you have more time and attention to work on it.
Other ways you can keep track of your ideas include keeping a list of all of your ideas in a Google Drive document, on a Trello board, or even a spreadsheet on your computer. Keep track of the ideas, any notes about the content, potential keywords you want to use, and whether or not you’ve published that post. After you’ve been blogging for a while, it can be hard to keep track of the topics you’ve already published about.
Record it – Sometimes the biggest challenge to writing a blog post is the actual writing part. There are lots of times when I’m in the car doing errands that I have a great idea for a blog post of video or something, but I can’t exactly write it down while I’m driving. I can, however, open the voice recorder on my phone or a voice note in Google Keep and record the thoughts there. Then, when I’m back in front of my computer (or waiting in a really long checkout line at the grocery store) I can take the notes and work on the blog post.
At times, I’ve even been tempted to record all of my Zoom calls and phone calls with certain friends. We always end up talking about an issue and usually end up with a brainstorm (or at least several good ideas.) I love the conversational flow of this kind of thing, too, and I think it can make it more accessible to others who maybe have a similar situation but don’t like to feel like they’re being ‘lectured’ to.
If this format is a preference, you could consider making your blog posts into a podcast that can be repurposed in several ways for other platforms. See the next tip for help in repurposing the content.
Transcriptions – If you do find recording to be an easy way to create content, there are lots of transcription services that can help you convert that audio into text so you can share it on your site as a blog post also. (Even if you do decide to offer it as a podcast, transcriptions are great for creating show notes, and will make your content available to a wider audience and will help your SEO efforts, as well. )
While there are several free and paid options for transcriptions, Otter.ai is a good place to get started. You can start with a free account and get the feel of how it fits into your workflow. I used Otter.ai to transcribe the podcast episodes I recorded last summer and it was really easy to use (and very eye opening to how different how I speak is from how I write.) Otter.ai offers smartphone apps for recording on the go and free accounts can import up to 3 audio or video files to be transcribed – paid plans allow more importing options.
Keep in mind, though, that transcription services will not be perfect (especially with free services, which are largely done via AI) so you’ll need to plan time to proof and edit before posting, but transcription can be a great way to get a large portion of the work done.