How to Create a Content Strategy Even When You Feel Behind
Let me begin this blog post by imploring you to believe something very important.
YOU ARE NOT BEHIND.
You are exactly where you need to be on your journey in this crazy world of online business. But, let’s also dispel the theory right now that you don’t have what you need to get where you need to go.
Do you feel like creating content is too hard?
Do you feel like you don’t have what it takes to provide value to your audience?
Let’s drop that at the door, and get to work. Ya with me?
So many epiphanies in my business start with this exact internal conversation:
Me: Man, I wish I could do that. There’s just no way. I can’t do that.
Also Me: Hmmm… why not?
Then, Me and Also Me proceed to battle it out with all of the reasons… or, um… excuses that are holding me back.
Isn’t this my business? Don’t I get to choose what I do? Is this a priority to me? If so, why am I not making time for it? What non-priority things are jedi-mind-tricking me into doing them first?
Last week, I had this very internal conversation when it comes to creating consistent content.
We all have a love-hate relationship with content, right?
We love “having written” content. It generates engagement, provides value, strengthens SEO, and generally gives us something to talk about.
PLUS, there’s that whole, everybody’s doing it and everyone says I should do it so I guess I should do it, thing.
Don’t get me started.
The time. Ohhh, the time. None of us have it, except for the people who do. They’re the ones we curse and spend our precious time Voxering our other no-time friends, asking, “How do they do it? I’m about to spend 15 minutes venting, I can’t write content!”
Okay, I’m not really knocking the time excuse. It’s a real thing.
But, the time issue really comes down to two things: 1) prioritizing what’s truly important 2) keeping the important things simple so that they can be sustainable.
This internal conflict led me to creating a content strategy for the second half-ish part of the year.
I didn’t wait to start in Quarter 3.
I didn’t wait to start until things slowed down.
I didn’t wait to start until I had my business manager onboarded (although, it was tempting!).
Here are three pieces essential to your mindset in this process:
Ask yourself: What am I telling myself I can’t do? Then… why not?
Challenge accepted: Graham Cochrane says to give away your BEST STUFF, to create a CRAZY RIDICULOUS amount of stellar, free content. Okay, challenge accepted.
Ask yourself: What if this could actually be easy? What would that look like?
Today I want to walk you through how to create a content strategy when it’s not the shiny beginning of the year, but you simply know it’s time to buckle down and be consistent instead of making excuses.
I gave myself a kick in the pants, and now it’s your turn.
New content on Wednesdays. Every Wednesday. Every platform.
Repurpose, recycle, repeat.
Adding video content, starting in July.
I know, I know, earth-shattering.
Now let’s get into the good stuff: the behind-the-scenes of these seemingly simple, but very focused decisions.
The Obstacles this Strategy Overcomes
Obstacle #1: When should I post new content?
This question has kept me down for FAR too long. I’m a crazy overthinker, and really value authenticity and originality, so imagine me thinking this through.
Well, they do most of their content on Thursdays, so that day is taken.
Oh, she does Mondays, and I love her stuff! I don’t want to compete with that.
OOOHHHH, nobody posts all their content on Saturdays at midnight, maybe I could make that a thing! Can I make that a thing?
Stop trying to make fetch happen and just stick with what actually works.
Takeaway: good content will gain traction, regardless of when you post (within reason). Takeaway: Instead of focusing on publish time, try focusing on creating the best content you can, and then actually marketing that content.
My goal: I want to craft highly valuable evergreen content that can serve my audience now and in the future.
Objection #2: What do I do with ALL THE PLATFORMS? How can I keep up?
This is where I like to use my universal business question that has proved its weight in gold (I feel like that saying should be “proved its weight in tacos and iced coffee,” but whatever).
What would this look like if it were easy?
Pro Tip: keep everything as simple and sustainable as possible. This seems like a “duh” piece of advice, but with all the business information out there, it’s so easy to go from zero to a dedicated Trello board in 30 seconds flat.
Take a deep breath.
What would this look like if it were easy?
When it comes to content creation in this season of my business, that means going heavier on the repurposing and a little lighter on the reimagining.
Repurposing content: getting multiple uses out of the same piece of content.
Reimagining content: taking a different angle, going deeper on a topic you’ve already covered, etc.
Takeaway: Take some self-contained snippets from your blog post, newsletter, workshop, whatever, and repurpose them for social media or corresponding platforms (use what’s in your blog post to write your newsletter, and vice versa). Don’t reinvent the wheel. See how it serves you to push content out to all platforms, test, tweak, keep going.
My goal: Use my business manager’s genius process document to write content for all platforms in one sitting.
Objection #3: I can’t do video. Well, why not?
I’ve had a lot of imposter syndrome when it comes to creating video. I don’t know the tech, there are tons of great YouTube educators, and on and on.
Finally, I got brave and asked myself: Why can’t you do video?
All of my objections were learnable or outsourceable.
Then I asked myself: How would video benefit your brand and your audience?
Well, in terms of crazy-valuable content, it’s about as valuable as it gets.
It would get my audience used to my voice and my approach to my area of expertise.
My audience’s primary pain point is that they didn’t get into business to be a writer, but they need #allthewords to run a business. Small, manageable tips in the form of video will help them get quick wins.
Takeaway: Question the limitations you put on yourself. Anytime you hear the word “can’t,” ask it a question.
My goal: Start video. Test, tweak, adjust, keep going. That simple.
How to Create a Content Strategy When You Feel Behind
Know your why.
I know, every piece of advice on the internet starts with knowing your why. But, for good reason. If your reason for creating content is just to keep up with the Joneses (literally, Davey and Krista Jones set the gold standard for creating consistent content!), that’s not enough. Plus, it’s focusing your energy on a negative motivation. Remember, you are not behind.
So, why do you want to create content?
My Why: I want to take anyone who comes to me on a CRAZY VALUE journey before we ever work together--or, even if we don’t. My goal is to fill my funnel with some crazy-good free stuff. Like, find a brand new sofa on the side of the road, kind of content.
Set your calendar.
Will you post once a week? If so, what day? Will you create content more than once a week, or maybe once every two weeks?
Don’t stress too much over this decision. But, take this into consideration: If you can’t create content consistently every other week, at least, I want to ask you two questions.
Why not? Is your process too complicated? Are you trying to reinvent the wheel? Are you unclear on your niche or what your audience wants?
Is creating content a priority for you? If the answer to this is “no,” because your business is thriving without it, your season won’t allow it, or something in that realm, I get it. And that may be valid for you and your business at this point. I want you to do what is going to serve you. But, if not now, then when? When you can hire someone? When you can streamline the process? When you don’t have a newborn? Think that through, and write it down. I’m going to venture and say that online businesses can’t survive in the long run without content creation.
Create a repurposing system.
Decide at the beginning how you will repurpose your content. Are you going to use the same text--a snippet from your blog post--for Facebook and Instagram? Are you going to scroll through the blog post and dive deeper on Instagram stories? Will you make a video with key teaching points? Will you tell a story and go deep and personal for your email list?
Whatever you decide to do, make the plan ahead of time, but don’t be afraid to test and tweak as things progress. Constantly ask yourself. What would this look like if it was easy?
You don’t need January 1st to revamp something substantial in your business. Pick a date, start, and keep going. Keep the commitment to yourself and figure out a system to sustain your goal. It is doable. We all have the same amount of time in the day as Davey and Krista (*giggles* industry jokes).
So, GET TO IT.
Action Step: Decide your refreshed content strategy, reach out to me over on Instagram and share it with me! I also would love to chat about your “why” for content creation, if you’re up for it! See you on The Gram *wink*
Omg… did I just do that?