Image: Tony Hand
If you’ve ever wondered, how some people are able to regularly produce effective content marketing; (newsletters, blog posts, articles, podcasts, etc), and how you can do the same, this post is for you.
I’ve divided it into 3 core ideas. So, let’s get started!
1. Is this useful?
There’s a sign on the wall in my studio. It’s a small sign, containing just 3 words: “Is this useful”. That’s the mark I set for everything I create. Nothing gets published unless I believe you’ll find it useful. I don’t try and be clever. Just useful. And as long as I think you’ll find an idea or observation useful, I share it.
Some small business owners are put off creating content, because they try and make everything as close to perfect as possible.
The thing is, your prospective clients or customers want something useful, not perfect.
Once you stop aiming for perfection you’ll find it a lot easier. You’ll also get massively better results.
2. Don’t let crappy ideas block you
If you’re anything like me, you’ll find that most of the ideas you get are pretty average. But maybe 1 in 5 or 1 in 10 are good enough, to be turned into a valuable piece of content marketing.
The challenge is that in order to get that 1 useful idea, you need to allow yourself to have the crappy ones… without getting disheartened.
The way I overcame this, was to deliberately give myself permission to think of lots of crappy ideas, knowing that something useful would come from it.
When you view lower-value ideas as essential steps in the development of better ones, they switch from being disheartening to highly motivating.
3. Give your work the respect it deserves
We often overestimate the ideas of others and underestimate the value of our own. Here’s a great example of what I mean.
A business owner told me how she was taking some files off a computer for archiving, when she discovered an old documents folder. It contained loads of articles, which were really interesting. She looked to see who wrote them and found they were all her own work, from 6 years earlier!
She didn’t publish them at the time, because she thought they weren’t good enough. It was only when she thought they were written by someone else, that she saw them for what they really were. Your work is almost certainly way, way better than you think.
So get it out there.
In short, if you’re looking to improve your content marketing, focus on being useful. See your average ideas as necessary steps to your useful ideas. And give your work the respect you deserve.