So you want to know how to write great content?
I know there are many posts out there on this subject. For me, the key to writing great content is a 5 step process.
I am going to share with you the exact 5 steps I use when creating content. It doesn’t really matter what the content is, it could be a blog piece, an article or even if you are writing your first e-book, these steps can be used and have been used many times over.
They say that CONTENT IS KING!
That can be quite scary to hear when you first start out. In reality, you do need to have great content not only to engage your readers but to keep bringing people back to your posts, websites and business.
BUT and PLEASE always remember this, EVERYONE is DIFFERENT!
By this, I mean that everyone has different levels for learning or engaging in learning. Some people like to keep things simple and straight to the point while others like a more in-depth and meaty post to read. Some people like to have pictures to break up the reading experience while others will get annoyed if there are too many pictures or adverts on the page.
So before you start on creating content it is important to remember that you will engage your audience more if you write genuinely as yourself. You will also notice that you attract more like-minded people to engage with you.
Your post may not be liked by everyone as long as it is like by someone, that is what matters.
So what are the 5 steps?
Step 1 – Getting Content Ideas
So how do you get your content ideas? These can come in many ways. If you are just starting out and are struggling for ideas it can sometimes be a good idea to check out similar sites to your own. See what they are writing about, is there anything missing that you could maybe write about? Could you even produce a similar post but put a different spin on things?
Is there a new product in your niche market? Are people discussing a certain topic at the moment? What’s hot and what’s not?
You can find ideas in multiple places. Social media is a great place for finding out what people are talking about around your subject. Sometimes while writing or reading other posts, PING, you get an idea.
I suggest you get a small notebook and pen and carry it just about everywhere with you. Note down any ideas that come to mind. You may have an idea for a post or you may even get an idea for a title but don’t know what you’d write. Any ideas you have to jot them down. Sometimes you can forget and when this happens, believe me, you’ll kick yourself.
Our lives are often busy and you can become forgetful. By jotting down any ideas as they occur you will have a whole bunch of stuff at the end of the week to work with.
I myself have a running log of ideas, some come to fruition and some are struck off at a later date. No matter what you make of your ideas later on, keeping a list will always ensure you have something to research and write about.
Step 2 – Researching Your Ideas
Now you have your idea it is time to do some research on it. There are 2 parts to researching your idea.
1 – What have others written on this?
2 – Getting a Title.
For the first step, it is often wise to turn to where your content will end up, online!
Do some online searches and read some posts. Normally I read through the top 3-5 on Google search. This gives me an idea of what others have written about what may be missing that I could use and MOST importantly what people are reading.
Take notes as you go through each post as you can and will use this when it comes to writing your own content. If you feel something is important – write it down. If an idea comes to you while reading, stop and write it down. Can you put a different spin on the subject? Stop and write it down. You don’t want to be going in search of posts once you start writing for something you read earlier.
The second step is to come up with a title.
If you are wanting your content to rank and be really competitive about this it is really important to do some title research. This allows you to create a title for SEO and get ranked within Google, Bing or Yahoo.
Use a good research tool for this. Personally, I would recommend Jaxxy. This is a great keyword and niche research tool. I use it all the time when researching keywords and titles for my posts.
- If you want to learn more about Jaaxy please read this post.
Step 3 – Breaking it Down
Now you have done your research and hopefully came up with a title and a few keywords you are going to use, you want to break down what you are going to write about.
As with any writing you want structure so a start, middle and end or an introduction, content and conclusion.
I normally start with writing down some headings that I will then write under, remember you can have several headings within your main content. You want your writing to flow so think about this when deciding on your headings. Headings can be like a map for the reader. They may only be looking for certain information and this can help them get to it and stay on your page.
Step 4 – Writing
Where you write can also be another important aspect of your writing. I myself write all content in “word” or “google docs” then upload it to my site. I just find it easier to do all the writing, spelling and grammar check the whole document and then I upload before adding my media and links. Just do what feels best for you.
Now you have done your research, you have your headings and your title it is time to start writing. By now you have done much thinking, reading and writing on your subject or topic that your writing should naturally start to flow.
I always find that the better I have researched and planned ahead before starting to write the easier it is to write.
Write in a way which comes naturally for you and as if the reader is a friend that you are sharing this information with. This way, hopefully, you will make a better connection with the reader as they read your content and this may encourage them to either click through your site or come back at a later date and check out some more of your posts.
Step 5 – Adding Media and Links
So you have written your content, what now? Now it is time to add some media and/or links to your post. I normally upload my content and do this just before publishing on my sites. But, again the choice is yours, you do it the way that works best for you.
If you want to link to other posts within your site or on another site now is the time to do this. Go back through all your content and add these. Remember not to add too many links as this can be frowned upon in search engines and can affect your ranking. I tend to stick between 3-7 links per post. You may not even want to have any links on some posts. You may just be writing to share what you have to say with your readers and that is ok too. Sometimes it is just good to give your readers value.
If you are going to add pictures or videos to your post also do that at this time. Please remember that too many pictures and/or videos can slow down your pages and site loading speed. I would suggest compressing your media where possible before uploading them. You can do this for free using a site like http://www.imageoptimizer.net.
So there you have it. My 5 Steps to writing great content. Follow these five steps and create great content for your site time and times again. Why don’t you write down these 5 steps and post it above your desk till you are doing it without thinking!
All you have to do now is press PUBLISH!
What are you waiting for? Go write and publish something great today! I look forward to reading some great posts out there.