Ways to Overcome it
Content marketing is the fuel that feeds your SEO engine. But what happens if you run out of gas, metaphorically speaking? Talk to any writer or blogger. If they’re honest, they’ll readily admit to experiencing writer’s block. Getting stuck — whether on the digital or paper page — is an all too common occurrence. So, how to you get yourself unblocked when the words won’t flow or you just can’t settle on a blog topic? Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Most Popular Posts
Go to Google Analytics and find out what are you all-time most popular posts. This gives you a clue as to what’s adding to your Google juice and what your visitors are reading most often. Think about related topics that you can expound upon. Content marketing is both about breadth and depth. Even if you have a narrow niche, there’s always something more you can say about it. Unlocking the keywords in Google Analytics may give you inspiration on what to talk about next. Even if you specialize in hand-made dog sweaters, you can talk about accessories, fashion don’ts, and washing instructions – this could be the content that rockets your website into the visibility stratosphere.
Visualize Your Target Audience
Spend 15-30 minutes or so visualizing your ideal audience. If you haven’t created a persona yet of your best client, now’s the time. Imagine where they work or hang out. Ask yourself these kinds of questions:
- What’s on their desk? Do they have pictures of family, their pet, or a vacation happy place?
- What gets readily tossed in the circular file? And, what gets placed on their “to read” pile?
- What kind of meetings do they sit in? Board meetings or PTA?
- Who knocks on their office door or calls them? What problems are they asked to solve?
- What’s their biggest fear or challenge?
The more successful you are in imagining what it’s like as your target audience, the better your content marketing will be. It will be reflected not only your choice of topic, but how share your point of view.
Content Marketing Prompts are Everywhere
Inspiration can literally comes from anywhere. Troll your bookmarks to sites related to industry topics. Here are a few places I go for new perspective on things:
- Rockzi – imagine the love child between Pinterest and a news aggregator. In a world where we’re bombarded by text, the visual nature of this site makes it fun to scan a wide variety of topics.
- Ted in Three Minutes – great place to consume 3-minute videos that won’t rot your brain.
- Mashable and Technorati for a quick overview of what’s hot in the news. My suggestion is to be very specific in your search and set a timer. Otherwise, this could be a major time sink, one where you emerge hours later still blocked on what to write about next.
Chasm between Creation & Editing
Once you’ve settled on a keyword or phrase as your writing prompt, let everything else go. When you find yourself in the writing flow, don’t stop. Go with it! And, make a mental note of what got you there.
One last piece of important advice: keep creation and editing separate. Writing and editing are two very different phases of the creative process. They use different sides of the brain. I’ve found that when I try to combine the two, I get tangled up and am never happy with the end result. In the writing phase, don’t be judgmental… just let the thoughts out whether you’re typing away on a keyboard or scribbling long-hand on a legal-sized pad.
When you enter the editing phase, you may find that your content can be divvied up into multiple pages or posts with some creative revising. Don’t be afraid to trim and save those bits for another writing session.
What other places do you go to pummel through writer’s block?
How can we help?
Need help with keeping your content marketing on schedule? Or, need help reading Google Analytics reports to better understand keywords and visitor behavior?
We are the spectrum group, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.