Deciding which type of content you should create is the ultimate conundrum for a small marketing department.
Actually, it’s one of a series of conundrums, but let’s just say it’s the conundrum that precedes most other conundrums.
That’s because content comes first. Without it, you have no advertising. Without it, you have no metric. Without it, you have no elevator pitch. Without it, you have no brand.
Whatever content you produce will define who you are and what you are trying to achieve. That’s why I say, “Success starts with great content.”
So if content is so all-important, which type should you produce? With three simple questions, I’ll share my answer.
What type of content are you best at producing?
In their book, Ditch the Act: Reveal the Surprising Power of the Real You for Greater Success,” authors Leonard Kim and Ryan Foland take you through a step-by-step method for revealing the “real you” in the process of building your personal brand.
Revealing the real you is made possible by creating content, Kim and Foland write, and the type of content you choose should play to your strength.
“How do you pick which type of content to produce? It’s simple. Focus on form, not force. What do you do best?” writes Foland.
For myself, and for the writers at Winbound, our best form of content is writing blog posts, webpages and guides / white papers. It comes naturally to us, and we can produce this content quickly, with high quality, and in significant quantity. We get the word out, and that’s half of the battle.
“Out the door beats in the drawer,” says Spencer X. Smith. And he’s right.
So what is your strength? Do you like making videos? Do you love chatting or interviewing people for podcasts? Are you a writer, and not because you “love” to do it (those people are imposters), but because you need to do it?
Keep in mind that whatever you do, it’s got to have some meat behind it. The three primary forms of beefy content tend to be blogs, videos and podcasts. Those can be repurposed, but you need a solid hunk of content to get the ball rolling.
Can you make a habit of producing it?
Once you’ve identified your strength, now you need to produce it. Consistently.
This has to be more than a task or a to-do. It needs to be a habit, something you do day in and day out — like getting a morning coffee or walking the pooch every afternoon.
In Stephen Covey’s book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, he defines a habit as “the intersection of knowledge, skill and desire.” I’ll paraphrase what that means:
Knowledge: The what to do and why. You need to know your topic, and why you want to talk about it.
Skill: The how to do. Again, pick the content type you like.
Desire: The want to do. I mentioned “needing” to write. I feel like my day is missing something if I don’t write something of quality. You need to find that burn.
Content creation needs to become a habit, and every creator has a different jam. I do my writing in the morning, after a cup of coffee, a 15-minute business book read, and 10 minutes of yoga.
Some people listen to music. Some sit in deafening silence.
Whatever, however you create, you need to be habitual with it, and designate time for your habit. As the writer George Flaubert said, “Be regular and orderly in your life, so you may be violent and original in your work.”
So get orderly, then get violent and original, and start cranking out that content.