It’s no secret that content can do wonders for raising your business’ profile and helping to position you as an expert in your field, whatever that might be.
But if you’ve never had to create content on a regular basis before, it can be difficult to know where to begin with the process. If you’re finding it too overwhelming, or you’re simply not confident in your ability to create high-quality content for an online audience, it is worth taking one small step at a time and not overthinking.
The following is far from a comprehensive guide, but it’s a good starting point for planning your content and will hopefully help you get started.
Set Goals for Your Content Creation
Setting goals for your content creation is essential – Edgy Labs recently recommended using your business goals as a starting point. Think about what you want to achieve with your content, for example:
- show you’re an expert
- grow an online following
- encourage more people to engage with your services
- boost traffic to your website.
Knowing your end point will help you when you formulate the details of your plan.
Create a Content Calendar
Get those ideas out of your head and into a spreadsheet. Creating a content calendar is the best way to ensure you stay on track. Keep it simple, but make sure you include:
- what your content is (blog, social media post, meme, guest post, etc)
- when you’re going to post it
- AND what your deadline is for writing it.
Do Some Blog Batch-Baking
If you want to make the most of your content creation time, spend a half-day each week on it until you have a good stash of articles, blogs and guest blogs. But don’t just sit there trying to churn out entire blogs, break it down into:
- research time (use research tools such as www.answerthepublic.com to find out what people are asking questions about in your niche and spend an hour or so listing the kind of content you could use in response)
- bullet pointing (once you have your ideas break them down into 5 or so bullet points: include the introduction and conclusion plus three paragraphs of content: again an hour or two could see you pulling together between 5 and 10 blogs)
- fleshing out (spend an hour or two fleshing out your bullet points)
- finding the perfect blop images (it’s not just about writing your blogs, it’s also a good idea to spend quality time searching for royalty free images – or creating your own – to accompany your blogs)
Search Engine Journal recently pointed out that there are a host of places you can go for inspiration, including social media, your customers and industry sources. Just make sure you put your own spin on any ideas you want to use for your blog and don’t simply copy others.
Creating content – particularly blogs – is a valuable use of your time. What I would say here is that you keep a record of everything you create and upload because in a few months’ time you can use repurpose, recycle and reshare it all again.