Strategic Creativity, Content Development and Writing
Blogging is a glorious way to create content. Not only is it great for SEO, but it also gives your brand some validity in your value proposition. The biggest challenge for blogging is being strategically organized and creative, while writing good content. However, if you are organized and follow some of these steps below your brand can strategically create content online so you can be found.
Step 1: Strategic Creativity
For me, blogs never come to me when I want to write. In fact, trying to think of a ideas to write about when I sit down to actually write is always a black hole. Instead, I keep a list of ideas on my Google Keep and also a hard copy list on my computer. Eventually, the Google Keep list is translated into a Word Doc titled “Blog Ideas”. Original, I know. I never delete the ideas, because the original ideas can spur new ideas. Instead each blog idea that I write about I bold and just keep adding to the original list.
In Google Keep, I have a million lists. In fact, each blog idea has a separate Google Keep list so if an example or idea spurs, I can jot it down. All of my blogs are marked with the same color on Google Keep, so they are easy to find. One more thing I do is take pictures of anything fascinating that I come across, whether it is a cool picture or an example to use in a future blog post.
There are other types of applications to use to create organization, however for me Google Keep has been the most effective. Here is a list of the top 3 organizer
Google Keep– This is my favorite list maker. It is simple. Google Keep allows you to organize lists and pictures. It also has reminders and you can color code your notes. The one thing that I like the most about Google Keep is that it syncs across all my devices and stores in Google Drive.
Evernote– This is by far the most popular organization workspace application. It has notebooks to organize based on a topic. You can upload files, you can capture sound and take notes and place each one of these in a specific notebook. Finally, you can create tags for each document so you can search by Notebook or by tag.
Wunderlist– This is similar to Evernote. With Wunderlist you can organize lists based on a certain area. Also, you can share, publish and email your list. The functionality is basic with a text version, however similar to Keep it is possible to set reminders. Also, there is a Chrome Extension if you want to add any topics to your Wunderlist.
Step 2: Strategic Content Development
After deciding on a topic from the long list of blog ideas, I create an outline to format what I will be writing about in my blog post. The topics of the outline may evolve as the writing happens, but there is some direction and purpose for the purpose. I always ask myself 3 questions:
- Who is the audience?
- What is my message?
- What keywords will I use to optimize?
Once the questions are answered, everything in the outline will support the 3 question. The tone and language will reflect the audience I am writing for. The message will be positioned based on the target audience and every word that is written will support the message. Finally, the keywords will be based on the message.
Step 3: Strategic Writing
After creating the outline and answering the questions, the writing becomes easy. Once all of the “research” is completed, I determine how to present the information. There are a few writing styles that I always advocate for in my classes and in my own writing:
Pick an idea and support it.
Explain how a few brands in your market or industry are successfully or unsuccessfully implementing a specific idea. A perfect example of this is the Marketing Insight blog post, 5 Killer Examples of Conversion Rate Optimization. In this post, Marketing Insight explains how various companies are delivering CRO.
Pick a brand and analyze it.
Find a brand and apply reflect how that brand is the poster child of a strategy or in an industry. Apply topics and give them some names. For instance, in my Customer Experience blog post I went through and analyzed how AJ Bombers is really hitting a home run with Customer Experience Marketing.
Write a how to post.
Show how to use a certain tool or implement an idea. For example, Hubspot created a blog post on 5 Infographics to Teach You How to Easily Make an Infographic. In this post, Hubspot explained how to make an infographic.
Write a Best of post.
Gather the best [insert here] blog posts, applications, tools, metrics or anything and compile a list. BufferApp created 23 of the Best of Social Media Articles Every Marketer Should Read. In this post, BufferApp went through and did a lot of the research that a marketer would normally do to find the hottest articles in the field.
Explain a controversial topic.
Nothing really gets the internet talking like a little bit of controversy. Be controversial and see how far your information will reach. In a recent post on Mashable, the article Why Millenials are Increasingly Cutting the Cord was gaining popularity. The controversy was enough to get people talking.
Show your accomplishments.
There is nothing wrong with showing your audience the achievements of your brand. Aurora University recently proudly showcased their AMA student’s accomplishments in a blog post Aurora University Students Win Regional Marketing Competitions. AU’s AMA is on fire and the University proudly showed how great the students are and all of their achievements.
There it is. Organization is the key to success. Get organized. Be strategic. And start blogging!