How I create one month worth of content in a day!
Creating consistent content can be tough to do when you’re not used to it but once you find your flow, you can create a mountain of it ahead of time so you’re not staying up until the wee hours of the morning trying to prepare something for your community. Even if you’re not creating ANY content right now, you can become a content machine in these simple (and mapped out) steps!
We’ve talked about our blog process and how we’ve used it to grow our email subscribers with ease. Once you have a plan, you’ll be able to churn out content without the dread!
1. Create the Plan – think timeline, think content, think what you want to promote
When you don’t know why you’re creating content, it’s hard to will yourself to do it. If you have a plan and a purpose for doing it, it will come with more ease. The first step in becoming a Content Machine is to create a plan. Think of it like a map. Where do you want to lead your customer to? Answer: most likely an offer you’ve created or a product you have for sale. In order for somebody to want to buy that from you, what questions might they have? What do they need to know before they can trust you and potentially want to purchase from you?
Having an outline of the things you’ll want to address is the essence of an effective editorial calendar. Our editorial calendar includes: a working title, the final title, the link (when the post is live), what vertical the blog post is for and what product or content upgrade you’ll be promoting through it.
Think of your content as the onramp to a freeway and your product is the main freeway corridor. You don’t want to pop your potential customer right on the freeway without the ramp. So create content that helps them understand their need (and that you get them!).
See how we use verticals to keep our content strategy on track!
2. Create the Space to Batch
You have to mentally prepare yourself to create a big quantity of content. But once I get in the flow, I’m usually on a roll. So whatever you have to do to have your sights set on getting content creating in your schedule, do that. Set the expectation as though it’s a business meeting with a client.
Block out a chunk of time.
I find that I work best in 4 hour chunks. It takes me about 30 minutes to get “in the zone” and ready to work in earnest. Then, I’ll get three 45-60 minute work bursts in with built-in mini breaks in between to stretch or stand up. At the end, I’ll spend about 15 minutes wrapping the projects up, editing, and sending things to my team.
Four hours is a great chunk of time for me but might not be the best for you or maybe that doesn’t fit into your life. Find what works for you and do your best during that time. Some times, I have to work in one hour chunks and if I decide to make it a productive one, you’ll be surprised how much I’m able to accomplish. As I write this post, I set a 25 minute timer to complete as much as I can on this post!
Prepare the environment.
This can look different for every person, but the purpose is to have everything you need to sit down and do some serious (and fun!) work. Notebooks, pens, notes that you’ve taken, computer batteries, external hard drives, and anything else you need to sit down and get the work done, you’ll want to have available. So many of my environment prep items are drinks and food so I don’t have to get up for a sip of water.
3. Batch 1: Outline and Prepare
My first batching session is the prep for the content. I’ll open up google docs and title and name them. Then I’ll start outlining the points I’d like to make. In our past editorial content, I’ll look for topics that relate to what I’m writing about and see if there’s anything I can link to or refer to (and make a note of that). There are articles I write that I have to dig deeper and do some research. I’ll make notes for the things I have to research and complete that at a later time. Then I’ll decide what the call to action will be at the end of the post and how I plan to make it a smooth transition from the blog content to the freebie or CTA we’ve got in store for the reader.
4. Batch 2: Have focused time to create content
In this second block of time, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed because you might feel like there’s SO MUCH to do. But you’ve done most of the thinking and strategy already. You’ve outlined the content, you know where it’s leading to. Your job here is to put words to it and become the teacher to your audience.
You’ll first want to go back to your outlines and see what you need to research. If there’s specific data you’re looking for, a quote you’d like to reference, or a definition, take time to find those before diving into the writing.
I’d recommend that you write one blog at a time, and preferably blog posts with similar themes or topics so your mind can stay in the same “zone” as you’re creating content. But you can think of writing the blog post as elaborating on the outline you’ve created and explain with examples and your knowledge to help the reader understand. That’s it!
5. Batch 3: Post Production
Now that you’ve done the heavy lifting, here comes the fun part! The Post Production might be different for every person. If you’re editing a podcast or a YouTube video, it might look much different. However, generally, you might want to schedule additional time for editing, creating content upgrades or freebies later on or adding an additional chunk of time to your batch day.
If you need to create graphics or images, you can spend time in post production creating that. That’s something I’ve outsourced because no matter how hard I try, my graphics will never look as good as somebody who has the skills or training.
There you have it. Content creation can have a huge impact on your bottom line and getting good at creating consistency can be found in batching and being a Content Machine.