What to Do Before You Dive Into Content Creation

“You can never save time but you can use it wisely”~ By Robert Rose.

Having worked on content of all sorts, from infographics and motion graphics to videos and e-books, I know that good content doesn’t start with a first draft. It starts with understanding exactly what you’re trying to achieve. So, before I started writing this post, I took the time to do my due diligence and did some research and came across a site called The Content Marketing Institute. And the notes I took are more or less contained in this post. They suggested, that one should always start with a discovery phase, and If one is new to content creation or looking to revise your approach because it’s not quite Pulitzer prize quality, or you would like an increase in readership, the best action to take, is to start with a general audit. 

* What are you doing that’s working? 

* What’s causing problems?

 * What would you like to explore? 

* What could you be doing better?

* What is your competition doing well? 

This piece of research into your own content should help you gather key insights to improve your content approach. Crafting content strategy is shockingly seldom done, 26% of B2C marketers and 23% of B2B marketers don’t even have a documented content strategy. According to the Content Marketing Institute,  this is definitely of the most common mistakes content writers and brands make. Creating content without a plan is shortsighted, inefficient, and a waste of precious time. According to the CM.I., all writers should follow this guide to content strategy if you haven’t done so before. Following this strategy will ensure your content will actually start “moving the needle”. 

Finally, you will know your goal if you’ve done your content strategy correctly.  They’re simply reiterating its importance because it is your North Star in content creation. Every aspect of your content is informed by your goal Once you have these 5 elements locked in, you can start to build out your final process and craft your content.

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  1. Thank you for sharing. Actually I have discovered that for an assignment like the one I am now doing which is writing for a travel book it makes it more difficult to just write with words I would have found it easier if I could include photos as I write but not on this assignment. I guess they’ll include photos after I submit the text.

  2. good on ya!

    i am a fan of the simple approach. I don’t do this for my wander project that is a Virginia Wolfe style stream of consciousness from the pictures shared.

    But for other sites, i start with the list you shared.
    what am I really trying to say?

    I try to avoid burying messages in the text as well

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