How to Put on Your Content Development Hat

June 7, 2012 — Leave a comment

When it comes down to it, the only problem with content marketing is … coming up with all the content.

It’s easy for professional writers to sit back and talk about the wonders of creating and how many good things an active blog can accomplish. All those rewards, however, require you to come up with high quality content that makes people want to visit your site and respond to it. That’s the hard part.

Now, I can’t tell you exactly what to write on any given day. But, I can give you some suggestions for putting yourself in the right frame of mind to get those creative juices flowing and write.

5 Ways to Make Content Development Easier

  • Make time for it. If you’re going to sit down to write, especially if you’re not a writer by nature, you need to have some time to yourself. You can’t have phones ringing and assistants knocking on your door. Those sorts of distractions keep your logical brain turned on and your creative brain shut down. So, schedule your writing time as you would any other appointment.
  • Change your scenery. It can be difficult to do content development in the same environment where you do all your business work. There’s a reason you sometimes see writers working in the dark corners of coffee shops. Just having a different environment starts you thinking in a different way. If you can’t get away from the office, try sitting in a different chair or using a laptop instead of your normal desktop.
  • Keep an idea notebook. At any point in the day, an idea for a good blog, video or ebook might float through your head. Ideas usually come at a moment’s notice, inspired by random happenings. Whether it’s a paper notebook or a notes file on your smartphone, have something handy that you can immediately pull out to capture ideas when they come.
  • Write, then edit. If you get a good idea, sit down and run with it. See what happens. Don’t worry about cohesiveness. Just put words on a page to see what develops. Then, go back later, preferably the next day, reread what you’re created and edit it into something cohesive. You get both the brilliance of initial inspiration and the refinement that comes from reflection.
  • Seek out inspiration. Constantly seek inspiration in new places. Read your competitors’ blogs and see how they’re looking at problems. Consume articles from commentators you usually disagree with. Ask children what they think about an issue. A new, challenging point of view on a problem will often make your own brain kick into high gear. Give it a shot.

Good content development is work. No doubt about it. The fabled muse is as fickle with marketing writers as she is with novelists. The key to successful content development is putting yourself in the right mindset to create and then recognizing the inspiration when it comes.

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