How to Conquer Yourself: Online Content Creation Strategy

May 07, 2016


How to Conquer Yourself: Content Creation Strategy

Creating a blog that is user-friendly, with quality content, getting traffic, and monetized is no easy feat.

As a new blogger, I've run myself ragged trying to get it all together with content creation, blog design, effective monetizing, and promotion.

I've learned that for content creation to be smooth and successful, you need to:

  • Plan
  • Create or produce
  • Distribute or promote
  • Analyze or improve and 
  • Repeat

The Breakdown 


Plan your content and answer the who, what, where, why, when and how questions.

  • Who - your audience?
  • What - the message?
  • Where - blog post, social media post, podcast, webinar, video, infographic, slides? 
  • Why - the purpose of your content. Is it to persuade, educate, or entertain?
  • When - when will you be presenting this information. Once per week or once every ten days?
  • How - will you be creating it all yourself or will you outsource?  


When creating content, follow the best practices, by making it:

  • easy to read
  • with correct grammar and spelling
  • SEO friendly - Search Engine Optimized
  • Optimized and beautiful images.
   

Distribute by promoting your content on social media, in magazines, newspapers, radio, billboards and television if you need to.


This is done to get your work out there where it will have the most reach to influence.

Analyze the performance of your content.

  • Is it getting the volume of traffic you expected?
  • Is it reaching and resonating with your target audience?
  • Are your readers leaving comments?
  • Are your readers commenting through other channels?
  • Is it being shared in social media?
  • Are other bloggers linking back to your content?
  • Has your page ranked on Google and getting clicks?
  • Has your page rank changed?

This step is vital to your continued growth as this is where you'll get valuable feedback.

And of course, rinse and repeat these steps for continued growth and development.



What, is a Content Creation Strategy?


Now, we can define content creation strategy as a strategic approach focused on planning, producing, promoting, and improving through analysis; valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract, and retain a clearly defined audience who takes action and ultimately drive profits.

Organizing is my Biggest Challenge


There is so much to learn and do.

Everything seems excruciatingly intriguing, and as a result, saps my time:

Hence rendering me unproductive because I go chasing after every little nugget.

Here's a perfect example.


I intended to write a post about my experience with Pinterest and how I managed to grow my following surpassing my self-inflicted time frame.

Instead, I ended up not only writing about two lines that are not worthy of being called a draft:

But writing, editing and posting about growing my Twitter followers.

I've written roughly 9 other drafts for other articles as well.

And to make matters worse, I've written, edited and posted this article and the Pinterest article still hasn't seen the light of day.

Another of My Problems


I've always had  the tendency to "neat and fine" things. On numerous occasions, my sister asks if I think I can nit pick everything. My answer is always "To get as close to perfect as possible".

And that trait is what's been holding me back.

I ask for and gladly accept constructive criticism, yet I'm hung up on how I'll be judged if I put "this" out there.

This is my whirlwind process:

  • I have an idea. 
  • Make a note of it. 
  • Plan how I want the image and the entire post to look.
  • Research data to back up my ramblings.
  • Add it to a to-do list with IMPORTANT, MUST DO and all the other stamps you can think of.
  • Create a draft without doing keyword research.
  • Then leave it there and move on to something else while vehemently promising to complete it before the end of the day or week.
Sometimes, this brilliant idea languishes for weeks, months, and a few times for more than a year.

 When I come across it I wonder, "I had this idea? Really?" Wow!

And quite frankly, sometimes I leave it there some more.

My Blogging Purpose


The main focus for me having a blog is to help others.

That's it.

And I do this by:

  • Sharing my journey. 
  • Being positive and encouraging to others.
  • Being open. 
  • Being interested in what's happening with my audience.
  • Encourage my readers to share my content and follow me by using "Follow" buttons at the top of my articles and "Share" buttons on the images.
  • Have a blog post timetable: that way my readers will know when to expect my next post. 

Or, if you don't want to be tied to a timetable you can let your readers know that you don't stick to a schedule and that's why it's imperative for them to provide you with their best email so they first will get your new content.

I should inform you that I have a timetable, but I don't stick to it. And this is something I need to address.

I've decided to put my foot down because this is costing me money.

How I lost 3 Months of Free HootSuite Pro


Know how when you go searching the internet for ways to save time and be more productive, and save all these articles to pocket and then read them later?

I've done this numerous times and one strategy that's touted by many prolific, profitable and well-read entrepreneurs and bloggers is to "Only check your email at a specific time or only on a certain day of the week".

HootSuite Pro invitation for 90 days of Free Hootsuite Pro


Well, this ninny took this advice too far.

On April 26 HootSuite (affiliate link) sent me an oh so sweet email and I didn't see it until May 5.

Can you imagine how I felt?

90 days of HootSuite Pro.

This is a dream come true because I could use the money I'd spend on this to get another service.

Do you know how much I could've achieved and learned in those precious 90 days?

Now it's all lost.

Gone.

Because I didn't check my email.


The 80/20 Rule 


The 80/20 Rule. 20% of our time spent creating content while the other 80% is for promotion of the content created.


Blogging and social media have assimilated an Economics based principle called the Pareto Principle.

It is more widely known as the 80 20 rule.

How it should work with our content creation strategy is that we should split our time with 80% going to content promotion and 20% dedicated to content creation.

For example, let's say you only have 20 hours per week to spend on content creation and content promotion for your blog.

What this means is, you would spend 4 hours creating content and the other 16 hours promoting your content.

Obviously, this is another content creation strategy for the web that seems quite successful and is worthy of exploration.

Because if I was applying it in an efficient way, I would've been more proactive and not allow 10 whole days to go by without checking my email.

And that opportunity would not have passed me by.

A New Plan to be Productive, Effective and Efficient


Because of that, I've devised a new plan.

Where each day of the week has a theme.

  1. Social Media Sunday. 
  2. Content Creation Monday.
  3. Blog Promotion Tuesday.
  4. New Tool Wednesday.
  5. Freestyle Thursday.
  6. Monetizing Friday.
  7. Research Saturday.
Online Content Creation Strategy #Infographic

Why Do I have ALL the Days Themed?


You must be wondering what kind of crazy person is this.
  • Does she work every day? 
  • When does she have time to go to the bathroom, interact with people, not on her computer screen?
  • Run errands?
  • Attend events?
  • Go to dinner?
  • And have time for family and friends?
In no way am I suggesting that I, or you for that matter, do all these things all day long.

These themes are a guide to ensure you and I get something work related accomplished between:
  • Getting the kids up and packing them off to school.
  • Doing the laundry.
  • Cutting the yard.
  • Going grocery shopping.
  • Having brunch with friends. 
  • Taking a breather in the park.
  • Exercising.
  • And making dinner.   
It will help you to feel less guilty about not being as dedicated as you'd promised and hoped.

It Will Benefit Your Business in the Long Run


But it sure does make me feel better to know that I got this one thing done that will benefit my business in the long run.

I know I'll accomplish it between:
  • Creating infographics, and images to post on different social media, as the size for Pinterest is not the same on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.
  • Keyword research.
  • Figuring out Google Analytics.
  • Checking to see which affiliate links are performing.
  • If my site is loading in one second.
  • And all the other worries of a blogger.

What Each Theme Covers


Each theme is designed to allow me to drill down into what I deem important for my blogs' growth and success.



Social Media Sunday




Social Media Sunday


I normally do this anyway.

Sunday has always been the day I unwind and indulge myself. When I was familiarizing myself with Pinterest, I got a daily planner - don't remember from where exactly.

But this daily planner showed which boards I should pin to each day of the week.

So I'd pin Sunday's lot, then used Tailwind to schedule from Monday through Saturday.

I also use this time to catch up with comments and messages though it's always best to do this as soon as possible to show you respect others time.

With practice, I'm getting better at social media.

Since:
  • I've grown my Twitter followers: 
  • Got a few more Facebook Friends;
  • and is increasing my Linked In connections,

I've become a bit more comfortable and has been integrating them more into my Social Media Sunday.

One of the good things about Pinterest is that it allowed me to connect my Twitter and Facebook profiles, affording me a presence on these sites when I'm not there.

When I speak to friends, as well as check my profiles there are comments and messages of them liking my posts and asking where I found the content.

In all honesty, I love using Pinterest so much, that I visit and pin daily, even though I've got pins lined up in Tailwind.

Google+ is a new discovery, so each Sunday I try to learn a bit more about it.

Content Creation Monday

Content Creation Monday


I'm so programmed that Monday is the beginning of the work week and that I should be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed about getting down to some serious work, it naturally follows that this should be my content creation day.
  • Article drafts and edits.
  • Social media posts.
  • Infographic draft, edit, and creation.
  • Creating and editing SlideShare.
  • Images for a blog post and social media sharing. 
This aspect of content creation is the most time consuming for me, especially as I'm not a graphic designer, nor do my budget extend to stock photos. Finding, editing and a creating the perfect image takes up the most time of my process. Here I go with the "perfection" again.

Thanks to Canva, my posts are looking more presentable.


Blog Promotion Tuesday


Blog Promotion Tuesday


After all that grueling work creating content, I'm pumped to share it with the masses knowing at least one person will find it useful.

Plus:


I love technology and this will give me a way to interact with it, especially as it will get me to use social media again.

On a more serious note, though, it will allow me to try new things and see what is and isn't performing so I'll know what efforts to stop, tweak and focus on.

New Tool Wednesday


New Tool Wednesday


In my quest to have a successful online presence and live the dot com lifestyle my way, I've amassed a large and varying collection of tools and services in categories such as:
  • Photo editing apps.
  • Desktop photo editing apps.
  • Desktop content editing software.
  • Browser extensions.
  • Social media management tools.
  • Free stock photo sites.
  • Headline analyzers.
  • Blog topic generators.
  • Keyword tools.
  • SEO tools 
  • And more...
Sometimes I think that by the time I get around to trying, and writing about them they'd be obsolete.

My plan is to kill my middle of the week blues, by making my hump day special; by giving myself a new tool.

While interacting with it, I'll be able to make value decisions such as:
  • Is this good enough for me to purchase and possibly upgrade?
  • Is it worth the cost?
  • Does it fulfill its stated purpose?
  • Is it good enough to recommend?

Freestyle Thursday

Freestyle Thursday


I don't know about you, but for someone who prefers spectator type activities like reading, watching movies, listening to music, and browsing the net

I'm easily bored.

So if I don't include something that doesn't restrict me to one thing, I'm going to go off the reservation again, and all this will be for nothing.

For freestyle Thursday, I'll work on things that:
  • I've yet to complete.
  • Want to get started.
  • Want to improve like: my email marketing or how to create a magnetic lead page or how to get more subscribers.
  • Comment on other bloggers blogs.
  • Visit Facebook groups.
  • See what's going on in my Linked In groups.
  • Or anything that pops into my head
Monetizing Friday

Monetizing Friday


Again, with my programming.

Friday is payday.

Whether I get an actual check or bank deposit.

Friday is officially the end of the work week.

It's the day I and a million others, take a deep and cleansing breath and exhale all the worries of the previous work week.

Don't you love Fridays?

So why not keep up the money theme and work on how I monetize my site.

And at the same time preserve my user's experience by not appearing like a sleazy sales artist.

On this day, I'll figure out:
  • If I should continue using Adsense?
  • Should I create a media kit and offer advertising space?
  • Which of the products or services do I use that could prove beneficial for my readers?
I put a lot of thought into this aspect as:
  • I don't like intrusive advertisements;
  • I'm not good at and hate sales; 
  • and most importantly, feel guilty about having things for sale while helping you.
Have you noticed on weekends, that your blog traffic is considerably less compared to the traditional work week of Monday to Friday?

Research Saturday


Research Saturday


This is the day when I spend some time figuring out what's trending in my niche, and what other bloggers are writing about.

I also use this time to carry out further research on my drafts and finding relevant and accurate stats to support my points.

How Many Days Make a Week?


Did I Miss Any days?


Oh, yea! I forgot to add:
  1. Yesterday;
  2. Today; and  
  3. Tomorrow
On these days, I'm slated to have fun!

And you should too.

Don't stifle your creativity, but experiment and create strategies that work best for you.  - Shelly-Ann Smalling

Conclusion


Believe it or not, this post came about because I went to OneNote to make a note to myself, and here I've gone and written a complete post.

Yes, we should be productive, efficient, and effective if we want our efforts to be profitable - not only in the sense of money mind you.

But at the same time, we shouldn't be so focused that we lose our focus and become automatons.

This will leach the fun out of what we do.

Who knows.

This post might go viral. Won't I be thrilled then to know I didn't stop myself from acting on impulse?

What I'm saying is, don't stifle your creativity by sticking to someone else's plans.

Experiment and create strategies that work best for you.

And with all things, there is always room for improvement.

Therefore, never stop evaluating and tweaking your processes.

Don't stifle your creativity, but experiment and create strategies that work best for you.  
Tweet: Don't stifle your creativity, but experiment and create strategies that work best for you.

Now it's your turn…


Well, there you have it.

My plan on how to conquer me from me.

What will you be doing to take charge of your dot com lifestyle success?

Caring is Sharing


If you've learned something today, please share it with your friends so they can learn too.

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