Publishing content regularly — and striving to improve with each new creation — is a proven way to figure out how to serve your audience and meet your business goals.
But I have other things to do besides writing content, and you do too.
Recently, I had trouble finishing a draft of a post and realized that my other responsibilities were distracting me from getting clear on the message I wanted to communicate.
So today, I’m going to share the simple solution that helped me complete the article with ease.
Why is the coffee shop sexier than the bar?
No, that subhead isn’t a new spin on: “Why did the chicken cross the road?”
It references one of my recent posts, The Coffee Shop Is Sexier than The Bar.
I initially wrote down a lot of ideas for that content, but when it was time to create a solid draft, I was stuck.
My go-to remedy when I feel blocked is to ask myself questions. I said:
If I’m calling the post “The Coffee Shop Is Sexier than The Bar,” every part of it needs to answer the question, “Why is the coffee shop sexier than the bar?”
My other musings needed to be cut out and (potentially) saved for other articles.
With that minor outlook shift, it felt like the floodgates opened … every sentence that was appropriate effortlessly stayed and I saw what didn’t work.
How to earn the attention of people “who don’t have time to read”
People quickly navigate away from content that contains too many ideas.
You can challenge readers without overwhelming them.
So, once you craft a headline, turn that title into a question in order to pinpoint your main message.
Then, as you draft and review your content, make sure every part of it answers that question.
Length doesn’t matter. A short post could be cluttered and convoluted; a long post could be cluttered and convoluted. A long post could be clear and crisp; a short post could be clear and crisp.
3 more examples of how you can use this technique
Browsing the classic five-W tribe and lone-wolf H will help you transform your headline into a question:
Here are three other posts I’ve written and the questions that helped keep the content focused:
- What are the 7 unusual signs on the path to a breakthrough?
- How does this technique help you attract better clients and customers?
- Where is the best place to consistently find winning content ideas?
This tip may seem obvious, but …
So much writing advice fails to take into consideration that content marketers are people who have other responsibilities.
And those other responsibilities sometimes make it difficult to see the obvious.
I was distracted and needed to use this quick tip to move forward.
A resource to help you with your content marketing tasks
Wouldn’t it be cool if there was already a checklist that could walk you through the steps of producing solid content?
We thought so, too, so we created one. 🙂 It’s a small but mighty resource to help you click Publish with confidence.
Our Content Confidence Checklist lets you check off the most important elements of good content, so you know you’re producing your best work. Because even when we know what to do, we have to remember to do it … every time.