Taken some time off writing content and you know you need to get back into it? Follow this plan to start your regular blogging and content creation back up again.
I recently took some time off for my 30th birthday (I know! So old and wise now). I was in Paris for a WordCamp and saw a few customers. My content creation, emailing and all that stuff plummeted. BUT – this is how I restart all the momentum I had.
Remember, we’re only going to post once a week to start. Don’t flood yourself with over-confidence and commit to a billion posts a week. One a week minimum is all we need.
Before we start, I want to remind you of the four golden rules of content. Roadblocks in creating content, from videos, memes, blogs, posts, stories, podcasts and everything else, stem from not following a framework.
Golden rules of content
“Writers block doesn’t exist. If you can’t think of something to write, be it a song or post or course, it’s because you don’t have a framework”
Repetition is key
Do you think that Dave Grohl from Foo Fighters, Nirvana, Them Crooked Vultures and Queens of the Stone Age (he played drums on their third album), became super mega famous because he played the drums once, plays Everlong once and then moves on?
Nope. Dave plays his BEST songs again and again. He’s proud of them, he loves how people react to it.
You’re not in danger of becoming a one hit wonder. The concept of a one hit wonder is born from people who only do one thing because they never create again. Usually they haven’t even created their original hit.
Don’t be afraid of repeating yourself with your content. Whatever you want to be known for, that’s what you need to write about again and again.
If you’ve written blog content, turn that into a video. If you’ve recorded a video, get it transcribed. Use different media to mix up your message.
Combined with our repetition rule above, your message will become ingrained into your audience’s brains.
Think about school. Studies show that deliberate repetition is key to understanding a new skill or way of thinking. Mixing up the delivery media, combined with a repeated message is critical to your content success.
You know more than your audience
Don’t think that what you’re writing about is too easy, or too obvious. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that just because you know it, everyone does.
You know more than your audience and they want to learn from you. Fundamental basics and simple stuff that you take for granted, is still vital to their learning and you need to embrace that.
Content begets content
Finally, content begets content.
“To produce especially as an effect or outgrowth”
All this means, is that the more you write, the more you create. Sounds like an obvious outcome, but it’s deeper than that.
Creating content will give you ideas for more content. Creating videos will naturally lead you to more ideas for videos. What we’re building is momentum and it’s a powerful POWERFUL part of content creation.
We’re going to go over the fundamentals of a content restart engine below and you’ll see just how, content begets content.
The Content Restart Engine
You took a few days (or weeks) off. You were ill, on holiday, lazy. Whatever. How do you restart your content engine?
Content creation is a horrible mix between feeling you have no ideas and thinking you have millions of ideas and where do you start?
This is the exact process you need to follow to restart your content engine.
We’re not going to worry about lead magnets, landing pages or anything like that. This is pure and hardcore free content. Blog posts, videos, books – whatever you need to produce to grow your audience.
What do you want to help people do?
At a high level, what do you want to help people do? What’s even the point behind you and your business? Never mind the blog content.
What can you help people do and who would benefit from that? Forget the delivery, content type, products and services. What do you want to help people do?
What changes in the world, economy, local town etc. do you want to see?
I’ve spoken about goal setting and how it motivates your entire business before (check that post out – tons of worksheets without optins to help you direct and guide your business).
For example, all I want to do at Sell Your Service is realise and unleash the potential of them and their business to support a lifestyle they want.
I do this by helping funnel builders sell more marketing funnels to their customers.
Our vision at MeBox is to build sustainable communities.
We do this by helping course based business find and keep more members.
A sports therapy business might help people run again.
They do that by helping people see why and how they’re injured and show them how they can get better and improve.
Your funnel business might help authors sell their books. You do this by helping them grow an audience of fans and connecting them to a book.
Don’t worry about the technology (it might disappear tomorrow) or the platform. Don’t think about products, services or anything that ties you to a delivery method.
You can focus on types of customers (authors, runners, course builders) and results (run faster, sell more books etc.). But you can’t say that you only help people with websites or funnels or social media.
You’re in the business of helping people and that’s what matters. Because now, we’re going to focus on blog content that helps them. Not your service or product.
This bit might sound generic and too open, but you need that. You’re going to narrow down and specialise later.
What’s the “win” or result that someone would see if they got your help?
Let’s say an author hears you can help them sell more books. They approach you and want you to help them.
If they worked with you, what are the results they’d see? What would the see in their life which is improved and better?
Write a list of ways that their life is better after they work with you.
More money? Obvious but lets’ write it down.
More sales, more customers. Larger audience. More followers.
We could go on. There are a lot of results that you can help people get.
These results are exactly what we’re going to write about.
What are 6 – 10 broad steps to that win?
This is the part that people struggle with. If we really boil down what a blog post (or any content) should be, it’s helpful content that explains how to do something.
Often, we’re so overloaded with ideas that we struggle to get them down on paper. That’s what we do here.
Write down the 6 – 10 broad steps someone needs to take, in order to achieve your win. It doesn’t have to be too in depth.
In fact, this first post is designed to be more high level and broad. We want an overview post.
Write a couple of paragraphs about each step and talk about how it helps them get a result. We’re going to go into more detail later.
For example, if I’m a funnel builder and I want to talk to authors about growing their social following, I might write down the following steps.
- Choose ONE social platform
- Dedicate 1 hour a day to promoting content via that platform
- Have conversations with followers
- Be consistent about your output
- Try to engage followers with live content
- Move followers to other areas like your list or blog
- Talk about stuff your audience want to read
These first steps, with their broader explanations are our first blog post we’re going to publish. Nice and easy and shouldn’t take too long.
Pick one of those steps and list the tasks that someone needs to complete.
Now, take one of those steps (notice how we can do this for every step, 10xing your blog output), and write out the tasks needed to accomplish that step.
Let’s take our list above, and choose step #1. Choose one social platform.
I now can write out the tasks my audience should take, in order to choose a social platform.
- What do you want to get from your social media?
- Who are your audience and where are they?
- What type of content are you going to produce?
- Are you going to be open or closed?
I now just write out how to execute one of those tasks. Or maybe I talk about the pro’s/con’s for each task. The idea is that I’m breaking down what my readers can do.
Each one of the steps can be broken down into tasks. Write up a paragraph for each task and you’re away.
Pick one of those tasks and demonstrate how to do it
Finally, we’re going to demonstrate something. So we can pick a task, let’s choose 5. Facebook. And we talk about how to set up Facebook.
It’s really that simple. How to set up a page or group. Do’s and don’t’s. Maybe introduce the post or video with the same paragraph you talk about in the task post?
Then repeat this stage for all the tasks. Before you know it, you’ll have dozens of posts, content, videos and more on content relevant to your audience.
I just can’t motivate myself to do it
I hear that. Do you know why you’re not motivated? Because you don’t care about the subject.
Have you ever talked to someone about being a vegetarian? Or Crossfit? Or a runner? Or a chef? They’ll talk for HOURS about their subject.
They’ll do that because they’re truly passionate about their subject area. Are you really interested in your subject area? What is it you want to talk about?
Also, if you feel you suck at writing, forget what anyone has told you about writing.
Just stick to the steps above and keep it simple. We’re not all Stephen King’s or Maya Angelou’s. But writing instructional and useful content is what matters.
Have you suffered from a content block? Maybe taken some time off and need to get back to it? Let me know in the comments below.