Showing up consistently + saving time + having impact + gaining visibility?
There’s no other way of saying it – to be visible and relevant, you need to show up consistently – with meaningful content.
In this article, I will share with you what a strategic content creation system can look like. And what’s more – how you can create your own system that serves your strategy.
For many years, I created content in the spur of the moment, following my creative impulses. Until I noticed that the creation process had become somewhat forced and overwhelming because it was hard for me to stay consistent and stick to the schedule I had set for myself.
If there’s one thing that I recommend you to do to break that circle of overwhelm – then that is eliminating randomness and following a strategy.
Because a strategy is not a rigid construct that makes you function like a robot, it is a framework that amplifies your strengths and makes you more productive and effective because you eliminate all the factors that slow you down and get you stuck.
So, start off with setting an overall goal. Ask yourself what you want to achieve through creating content.
You don’t need to limit this to one goal – start with some brainstorming and make a list like this one:
Whatever it is that you want to create on the back of your content creation – write it down.
Now you have a very clear WHAT that gives you direction.
And just to ensure that it matters to you – I would also check in on your purpose and clarify once more the WHY behind your endeavours. It’s the WHY that creates momentum and motivation when things get hard.
Just like the classical hero (sometimes reluctantly) accepts his calling and sets out to achieve his mission – you need to take your goals seriously and come up with a plan on how to achieve that in quickest and most effective way possible.
In other words – break down your goals into steps and actions that you must take to achieve the end result.
A little bit of strategic thinking goes a long way here too. Here are a few questions that you can ask yourself to show up strategically:
Answering these questions is absolutely necessary because it allows you to define which social media platform(s) you want to show up on (I recommend mastering only ONE platform first before you add more).
And it allows you to define one additional content channel that is NOT social media.
The strategy behind this is to now overwhelm yourself from the get-go, but choose one social media channel that works for you + one other channel. Then master both channels before expanding (and outsourcing) into additional channels.
On LinkedIn, for example, you have a variety of ways that you can explore (and that get rewarded by the algorithm when used regularly):
There must be one medium that you enjoy most and that you can identify as your main mode of creation. For me, it’s writing – short and long-form posts.
In addition, think about one channel that is NOT social media. This could be a search engine like:
Or it could be a subscription-based model that delivers your message to people who are interested in what you have to offer…
Think about how you want to nurture and sell to your audience and then pick what works for you and your audience. It is important to have one permission-based component in your strategy that serves people who are expressing their interest in subscribing to your content.
Earlier I mentioned that it is important to find out what is easy and effective for you. Creating processes that work for you and that helps to get the best out of you and make you more productive and effective, is super important.
Here are three processes that I recommend to define:
I cannot stress enough how important these processes are because they allow you to stick to your plan, be productive & effective – and save heaps of time.
If you need help with defining a process that works for you – then drop me a message and I can help you with that.
The driving force behind this is to make it as simple and easy as possible for you to stay consistent and achieve a prolific, high-quality output that sets you apart and gets attention.
No strategy is any good without implementation. For your strategy and plan to work, you must take action.
One of the biggest problems in the online world is that there is an implementation gap that is extremely hard to close.
There are heaps of online courses or coaching programmes out there – but the time and money you spend on learning are wasted if you don’t take action.
There are three sets of systems that I recommend you install to be as effective and consistent as possible:
A content calendar is a next step that you take once you have generated a list of topics that you want to (strategically) share.
A content calendar allows you to outline the content that you want to create throughout the weeks, months or even the whole year taking special events, campaigns, and launches into consideration.
A content calendar makes it easier to “batch create” content and schedule well-performing content for repurposing, recycling, and reposting.
It also makes the next step easier for you:
Do you know the advice of “what gets scheduled gets done”? This is a super important piece of advice that you should be taken seriously.
Block time in your calendar for content and copywriting!
I block off my whole Mondays. No meetings, project work, nothing else but creating content. That allows me to have a higher output and work in creative flow (which gets you into a state where you can create in 4 hours what others create in 4 working days).
Working in creative flow is said to make you 70-80% more effective!
This is the space where you can write your long-form content, your daily posts, prepare your LIVES and podcasts, write your marketing emails etc.
And apart from my blocked-off Mondays, I also allow for a few shorter time slots in the morning where I create more content or work on preparing lives or other content as needed. Mornings work best for me because my brain is fresh in the morning and the house is usually quiet.
If you find yourself being distracted and watching videos on YouTube or scrolling through your LinkedIn feed more often and longer than you desire – then it’s time to be honest with yourself.
I found a very sobering method to hold myself accountable. I set up a time tracking tool and now rigorously record my working time during the day. Toggl works fine to me – that’s a free tool that you can use and that you can calibrate to tell you what you’ve been working on and for how long.
Journaling is another way to hold myself accountable. I journal every morning and write down the tasks that I must complete that week but also that day. (Don’t make the daily list too long or it turns into overwhelm.)
Then I write down my daily schedule (including any scheduled meetings in my calendar) and assign myself time slots in which to complete the tasks I am setting myself.
Find an accountability partner whom you check in with weekly or bi-weekly. It doesn’t feel good when you have to admit that you didn’t get anything done that week. It feels a lot better when you can celebrate your progress together!
And if you think – “heck – this is quite a rigid framework!” – then think again. The systems and frameworks that I have just shared with you, make you more effective and productive – that means that you get more done in less time which frees up time during which you can do what you enjoy!
Being more strategic and organised gives you more freedom.
A few last words…
Yes, it is quite a task to set this all up. Especially when you don’t know where to start with the creation processes and implementation strategies.
That’s one reason why I have created The Word Distillery membership – everything I’ve mentioned here gets addressed in my membership where you get the support you need to pull this off.
You can find out more by clicking on the image below!