How do you create good content consistently on so many platforms without burning out or without losing your sanity?
In this blog post, I’m sharing four content creation hacks that will help you save your time, be more productive, and create high quality content on a consistent basis.
So between my two websites, Facebook pages, LinkedIn pages, Pinterest accounts, Instagram account, YouTube account, et cetera, I’m usually creating content for at least 10 different platforms at any given point of time.
If you’re new here, I run two different online businesses.
On the one hand, I have a lifestyle blog, which requires a lot of different types of content from me. And on the other hand, I have an online education company called Digital Empires (the website you are on), which also requires different engaging content from me as well.
This means that I often have to plan, create, and publish a lot of different types of content without making it repetitive or boring. And I honestly couldn’t have done all of this without the four hacks that I’m going to share with you in this post
Content Creation Hack #1 – Plan Ahead
Now, one of the biggest problems that I used to face as a content creator was that I would always procrastinate, and even though at the beginning of the month I would always think that I would create X number of blog posts and X number of social media posts, at the end of the month when I checked in, I actually hadn’t done that much. And I blame that on procrastination.
Now, if you’re an average human being, you also have those days where you just keep procrastinating and you think you’re going to do it, you’re going to do it, but you don’t end up doing it.
Now, what that does in the long run is that over time you keep falling behind and behind on your schedule, whether that is on your blog or that is on your social media platform, and eventually it causes you not to grow at the speed that you would like to grow.
Now, one of the best ways that I found to deal with this issue was to always have a master list of content that I create for all of my different platforms. Now, let’s say that you are a blogger and you want to create a blog post a month so that you are regular and you have enough content going out on your blog.
What you will do in this case is that you’re going to take out one or maybe two hours at the beginning of every month, sit down and brainstorm all of the topics or content ideas that you want to create, and put that in one place.
You can use a Word document, or you can use an Excel document. You can even make a simple Google Drive Sheet and update it with the topic, the categories, the keywords, and any other graphics or competitor research that you might have done on that topic. What this will do is that it will free up so much of your time that you spend staring at the computer screen, wondering what you should be creating, and it’s going to take away that uncertainty so you will always have a list of ideas that you brainstormed that you know are good for your website or your business, and you can just jump into creation right away.
Now, I personally do this for both of my businesses right at the beginning of the month so that my team also knows exactly what to expect during the month, whose tasks and responsibilities are what, and I always have an overview of what content I need to create without wasting time and doing the research over and over again every time I sit to create content.
If you’re just starting out and maybe you are a solopreneur who doesn’t really have a team, that’s fine.
For Digital Empires, which is my online education business, I create 100% of the content, which means that all of the five accounts that are related to Digital Empires, including social media channels, I oversee and manage all of that content, and I could not do it if I wasn’t planning ahead.
Content Creation Hack #2 – Document The Process
Now, if you are a content creator, you know how long it takes to go all the way from idea to publish. There are so many different steps in the middle, and that would differ depending on which platform you’re optimizing your content for. But if you start from scratch every single time that you’re creating the exact type of content, it’s going to take you way longer to finish and it’s going to use much more of your time that you probably don’t have right now.
The only way to speed up content production is to actually write that down step-by-step, whether in a Word doc or maybe an Excel sheet, so that every time you’re creating a new blog post, you have a list of 10 or 15 steps that you must check off to ensure that you’ve covered your base.
It’s the same whether you’re creating a video or a podcast as well. What this does is that it eliminates the time that you need to think about what it is that you forgot or what it is that you had to do. Maybe you had to add some keywords. Maybe you had to upload an image. All of these steps should be documented in one place, not only to simplify the process for you, but also in future, when you outsource this process, they would know exactly what you need to do.
For example, I have a Pinterest manager at the moment that helps me with my Pinterest account, and I’ve actually documented step-by-step exactly what I need her to do so that every time that she’s creating pins for my account, she knows exactly what the step-by-step process is, and what is the most optimized way to do that for my particular business?
Now, once you’ve created this document, don’t let it rust. You’ve got to check back to it every time that you create a new blog post or a new podcast or a new video, so that you’re sure that you are ticking off all the things that you need to do to optimize your content, as well as keep testing and tweaking and adding things to it as you go along. One of the cool things about being a content creator is that you can never know everything.
There’s always new things that are going to get introduced, new algorithms to check off, and this is where you can really document your process and make sure that you are doing what’s best for your brand and business and you’re not wasting time in all of the guesswork or forgetting something that’s really important. If you create a lot of content for social media, like Pinterest or Instagram, you can even look into getting templates, presets, or maybe even swipe files to make your life easier. As a creator or a business owner in the digital space, your time is money. The bottom line is simple. The less time you spend on repetition, the more time you have for innovation, which is always a good thing for your brand and business.
Content Creation Hack #3 – Repeat What Works
Now, I’m a huge fan of doing things that work over and over again, because why the heck not? If you know that your audience always responds well to certain topics or certain categories of content, why would you not create more of that content instead of chasing new things every single time that you open your computer?
Despite what others might say, you don’t need to keep reinventing the wheel over and over again. You just need to find a wheel that spins well, and then you just need to keep spinning it. Now, this is not to say that you shouldn’t be creative and not pursue new ideas, because as a creator, that would be a punishment for us. But this means that you should also be focusing and paying attention on things that are already getting you the best results when it comes to your audience and your business.
Now, how can you find out what is resonating with your audience and how can you create more of this content? Usually, the answer lies in your analytics. And now, I know you might not be a number fan or a data fan, and I wasn’t either when I started this journey. But over time, I’ve come to realize that when you take decisions strategically, especially when it comes to the kind of content you create, you have better results in the long run.
This means that if you have a blog, you should be looking into your Google analytics, checking on what are the kinds of landing pages that your audience is coming on, what topics and what categories those are, and how can you recreate more of those content? If you are an Instagram creator, you can look into your post insights and check out exactly which posts are doing well. What is the kind of topic those posts had? What is the kind of caption that you were using? And so on and so forth.
Once you know what is working well, you simply find more ways to incorporate that into your content marketing strategy. Not only will doing this remove all of the guesswork from your strategy, but it will also ensure that you are spending your time on creating pieces of content that really resonate and work well with your audience, and in my world that is a win-win.
Content Creation Hack #4 – Repurpose Your Content
Now, I’ve saved the best for the last. This strategy alone has saved me hundreds of hours of time on my new business this year. Now, maybe you’re wondering, what exactly does repurposing your content mean? Now, repurposing your content simply means that you create a piece of content once, but you use it over and over again in different formats and in different places.
To give you an example, let’s say that my main platform is my YouTube channel, and I make a YouTube video. I can then create a small trailer from that YouTube video and post that into my IGTV. I can transcribe this video into text and then publish that as a blog post on my website. I can also create pins directly leading to this YouTube video, as well as leading to the blog post.
I can also create memes or maybe sharable moments that I want to share from this video and use that on my Facebook, LinkedIn, or my Twitter account. This means that I spend time creating one really good piece of content and then I use it over six or seven different places. Now, in order to use this strategy, you must have at least one channel where you have a long form piece of content.
Now, this can be a blog or a website where you publish blog posts. This can be a podcast where you publish a podcast episode, or this can be a YouTube channel where you publish videos. The idea here is that you use that one long form piece of content and create multiple short pieces out of it that are optimized for those social media channels and platforms.
What this will do is that it will free up so much of your time in thinking of ideas for all of your different channels and make you focus on your main channel and repurpose and reuse that content over and over again. Some of the tools that you can use include InShot, which is a video editor, especially for IGTV videos. You can use Rev, which is great for transcribing audio into text.
You can also use repurpose.io if you are, let’s say, a podcaster or a video maker, and there are so many other free and paid tools in the market as well. You’ve just got to spend some time researching exactly which tool fits your needs best.