You sit down at your desk and there’s so much to do.
Even though you want to maintain a constant web presence and stick to a regular publishing schedule, it just seems like things keep getting in the way.
There’s always something else to do or somewhere else to be and, some days, it seems impossibly difficult to find the time to write.
But you know how important content marketing is and you feel badly for not meeting your goals. You’re worried that your business is going to flop because of it.
Fortunately, there’s a way out.
5 Ways to Stay On Top of Your Content Marketing (Even if You Believe You Have No Time)
There’s no question that content marketing takes time and effort, but these five tips can help you stay on top of it, even when you feel like there’s not enough time in the day.
1. Capitalize on Your Strengths
Tim Ferris, entrepreneur, efficiency guru and author of The 4-Hour Workweek says it best: “Emphasize strengths, don’t fix weaknesses.” While it may not be entirely practical to go through life without ever fixing weaknesses, you get the point.
When it comes to content marketing, focus on what you’re great at. If you hate writing but love to talk to interesting people, stop straining to create weekly blogs and start a podcast instead. If it takes you five hours to figure out how to film, edit and post a video, consider sticking with a blog.
Content marketing is a broad field and it’s large enough to accommodate a variety of mediums. As long as you are maintaining a constant presence, it doesn’t really matter how you do it. Don’t kill yourself doing something you hate. Instead, focus on what you’re great at. Your readers will notice and you’ll create higher quality content with less effort.
2. Plan for Distractions
In today’s world, we are taught to multitask and work ceaselessly, without regard to our natural need for food, sleep or companionship. Not surprisingly, these things can easily derail the quest for great content. When considering how to attack your content marketing, take into account the things that often throw you off track.
If you’re sharpest and most able to focus in the early morning, don’t put your content creation work off until the late afternoon. If you know that a phone call or some internet browsing can cost you concentration and result in added work time, leave the phone in the other room while you write or record and avoid using the internet for anything but necessary research and linking.
If you have plans that may impinge on your work time, consider pushing your content creation efforts to a block of time that will be uninterrupted. Although these are great practices for any type of work, they are especially applicable to content marketing efforts.
Ensuring that you are putting out great content requires concentration, high-quality work time and focus and, in order to create any of those things, you need to know what’s going to distract you and make the job that much harder.
3. Know What Motivates You
Just like there are certain things that are guaranteed to throw your efforts off track, there are certain things that will help kick them into high gear. Maybe you work best on a schedule and could benefit from setting a timer for two hours of concentrated work. Maybe being held accountable by your audience would be helpful, so you commit to publishing a piece of content every Tuesday.
Maybe you work best over a cup of coffee in the early hours of the morning. Maybe it helps you to read or view a few other content marketing pieces before you begin working on something that is similar to what you want to achieve.
Regardless of what gets you going, be sure to pay attention to that. No matter how dedicated you get to the mission of creating great content, there are going to be hard days and it will help to know which switches you can throw to boost motivation and enthusiasm.
4. Celebrate Small Goals and Learn to Refocus
For some people, the idea of a huge, looming deadline or project can be enough to induce panic. If you find yourself in this boat, it might be wise to take it back a few steps.
Instead of shooting to write, research, edit and publish a 5,000-word blog every Thursday morning, consider writing small bits every day leading up to the publishing deadline. In addition to helping you produce work that is well thought-out and carefully crafted, this approach also serves to reduce stress and, in turn, makes content marketing a whole lot more fun.
Keep in mind, however, that regardless of how great you get at celebrating the small stuff, there are still going to be days when producing high-quality content is just hard.
Content marketing, just like anything else, requires that you give yourself some slack. Some days, you aren’t going to get it right. You might miss deadlines or produce sub-par content and that’s okay. The important part is that you recognize this and allow yourself to learn from your mistakes. Identifying what went wrong, learning from it and then allowing yourself to move on is key for content marketing success.
5. Consider a Content Agency
If you’re still having trouble with content marketing, consider enlisting a content agency. Content agencies employ talented and highly trained writers who are capable of adhering to deadlines and putting out large amounts of content. In addition to taking the burden of content marketing off of your shoulders, a content agency can ensure high-quality work, edits and specialty writing tailored to your preferences.
By Julia Spence-McCoy