First things first: content creation for the sake of content creation is a waste of everyone’s time. Yours. Your audience’s. Even Google’s. Don’t do it. That being said, there are times when the content deserves to be written but the inspiration isn’t there – particularly when it comes to social, when the regularity of content and the constant need for new ideas can be challenging. Everyone gets writers block sometimes – so here’s 5 steps to solve it. Starting with the obvious.
1. What are you writing for?
What’s the purpose of the content? What do you want it to achieve? Are you writing long form content for SEO, or crafting the perfect tweet? To drive sales or to engage with your customers? It’s unlikely that this will actually help you get started – sorry – but it’s important to keep this in mind while you’re doing all the other stuff.
2. Who are you writing for?
Again, a seemingly obvious step, but considering your audience will massively help with the tone of voice. Picture the reader and write down a few phrases – that can be nothing to do with your content – that you could imagine them saying. Or say it out loud. I’m not judging. Then a few sentences that you think would appeal to them. Stepping away from your content to consider your audience helps to both ensure that your content fits, and come up with new ideas that might help in the future.
3. Why would they care?
If you can’t think of a reason they would care about what you have to say, don’t bother saying it.
4. What else would they like?
Immerse yourself in other content that would be of interest to your audience. Read popular publications, find influencers, listen to music. Researching around your topic is a good way to hone in on what you actually want to say.
5. Who else do you like?
Read work of writers you think are good. Actually, that’s just good advice for life. Good readers make good writers. Reading lots keeps you inspired. If you’re writing for social, dive into twitter for a while. Pay a visit to some of your favourite accounts. Show them some love – they deserve it.
6. Lower your standards
Write anything. Let it sit for a while. Make tea. Have lunch. Go on holiday. Whatever your deadline will afford, then come back and make it better. Starting is always the hardest part, so just write anything and then work around it.