I’ve been starting fires wrong my whole life, apparently.
Growing up in Australia, every year I was sent off to a camp on a working farm, where we looked after the animals and rode horses all day long. Bliss!
The highlight of the week was the ‘big muster’, where we’d head off on our trusty horses to muster a few cattle, camp outside and most excitingly, light a campfire.
(30 kids loose in the Australian bush with animals, knives and matches. What could possibly go wrong? The 70s have a lot to answer for.)
It was all about building the right kind of fire. It was very competitive. You had to have the perfect structure and that structure was…..’the pyramid’.
Kindling at the bottom, a perfect wigwam structure of smaller twigs and some large pieces of wood leaning on top. Even with the perfect pyramid, it was touch and go whether or not it would catch. There was a lot of blowing on glowing embers and probably burnt eyebrows and minor facial burns.
Years later, I met my husband and to my amazement, he could light a fire EVERY SINGLE TIME in under a minute. What was this fiery magic?
People, he uses a Jenga-like structure. To me, this sounded like madness but it works. And you don’t need any kindling. Three logs and a solitary firelighter does the trick.
Although it goes against everything I’ve believed since childhood, I too now use the Jenga method.
This often happens in business. When there is a prevailing belief around a certain topic, it makes you feel good because you are ‘doing it the right way’.
For years, I’ve been told that creating your content needs to be done in batches because this is what efficient content creators do. ie. ‘Plan a whole month of Instagram’.
Except that just wasn’t working for me. I felt guilty for not being able to bang out a whole month’s worth of content in one go. I got bored. The task was just too big.
What is manageable for me, is spending 15 minutes every single day, creating content. A simple daily caption that gets turned into an Instagram post, a Facebook post, a Pinterest pin…and at the end of the week, into a blog post?
Can you see where I’m going with this? It’s not what all of the content gurus tell you to do, but it works for me.
But then, I’m a Jenga kind of girl these days.
A lot of social media experts will tell you that it’s important to ‘mix things up’. This often results in people’s social feeds not looking or feeling coherent. But think about scrolling behaviour for a second…when you scroll someone’s Instagram feed, wouldn’t you rather the content happens in an order that makes sense?
More importantly, the only person who sees all of your content is you…which means that working to a theme gives your audience more chance of connecting with your topic.
I believe the secret to creating a whole week’s work of impactful content is to make sure you have some structure in place.
After all, the goal is to combine all of your daily social posts into one juicy blog post at the end of the week, so you’ll want to make sure that each day’s post leads on naturally to the following day’s post.
Here’s how I put my week together:
Monday: Tell a personal story that introduces the topic of the week.
Tuesday: ‘Most people believe’ and why you do not (that what I’ve done today)
Wednesday: Share your top tips
Thursday: Share a success story or statistic
Friday: Wrap up, summarise and go live (optional)
What kind of story could you tell over a week of content?
Content that connects with your ideal client
The secret to writing compelling content that really connects with your ideal client is to make sure that it relates to your key content pillars.
And what are those?
Key content pillars or ‘topic buckets’ relate to the most pressing concerns that your audience has. When your content directly reflects and solves those concerns, it will resonate strongly with your followers.
The best way to find out what’s on their mind? Ask them. Emotion-based research is really important. (You can find my post explaining exactly which questions to ask over on The Design Space blog).
Armed with your results, you should be able to identify 2-3 key points of concern that you can use whenever you are creating content for your audience.
Whether you’re writing a blog post, creating a lead magnet or simply posting on social media, challenge yourself to make sure that your content addresses at least one of your key themes.
You can even use some of the exact words and phrases that you find in the answers to connect more deeply with the ideal clients in your audience.
Positioning yourself as the expert
Even if you’re not into blogging regularly for SEO, creating a set of blog posts designed to show that you really know what you’re talking about, will repay your initial effort many times over.
You can strategically position these helpful posts throughout your website. They are particularly effective if you redirect your contact form to a thank you page.
At that point they will be keener than ever to start consuming your content and if they content that directly addresses their key concerns, then you’ll be able to build a relationship, where they start to know, like and trust you, all the more quickly.
If you’re someone who feels intimidated by producing social media or blog content, don’t overcommit. It’s much easier to create content little and often, rather than struggling to put together epic long-form content pieces.
My top tip is draw up a list of topics that relate to your key content pillars, and prioritise creating blog posts for each of them. Even producing 3-5 content pieces will give you a solid foundation of content that will be useful, position you as the expert and really connect.
If you can get into the habit of producing a single paragraph daily, to post as an Instagram caption, those captions soon mount up into enough content to produce a blog post. Writing daily means you’ll soon chip away at your content goals, without feeling overwhelmed.
Want to join my Easy Content Creation Challenge?
I’m giving you my Weekly Content Generator template to help you create more than 10 pieces of content in 15 minutes per day. Watch the video, grab the resources and GO – you can do it!