“This was a great campaign! You should write a blog about what you learned from it” “Yeah! If I find the time I certainly will” This is an all too familiar conversation among marketers that rarely results in a blog. Why does this happen? I can think of several reasons. One that stands out is that writing is seen as a tedious task. It’s not easy, but if you enjoy the material you are writing about it won’t seem tedious at all. When I started writing, finding topics were a bit tough too. It took me a while to get into the groove of writing. But once I did, I enjoyed it.
The advantages of writing are many, particularly when it comes to building your brand. In industries like technology where content generation is important to marketing strategy, it helps to have marketers who are writers. These marketers can help a great deal – by writing their own content and improving technical content. Here are a few tips for marketers looking to get started on their writing
Don’t overthink the topics
Many of us marketers have fallen victim to this at some point. We end up analyzing topics down to the dot and end up with a huge list. And then realize you either have too much or too little to say and discard the effort altogether. Pick topics that you are comfortable with and the ones where you can share experiences. It helps because you don’t have to force yourself to come up with the material. The ideas flow and you will enjoy the creative process.
Find inspiration from your everyday tasks
As marketers, we work on several things at any given time. It could be an event, a newsletter, or a social media campaign. Any of these tasks requires a standard set of activities – industry research, analysis of past data, and many meetings with various teams. These are everyday tasks, but what you might not realize is that you are unearthing a goldmine of information. All of which, can be a huge asset to your fellow marketers who may be involved in similar events or campaigns. The next time you get involved in any of these activities, put your writer’s cap on. Identify how you can translate some of these experiences into written content.
Find inspiration from other content creators
The world of tech evolves fast. Something new is already happening or is about to happen. Great writers consistently showcase their experiences through all forms of content. Identify 3-5 individuals whose content is relevant to your work and those you can relate to. They don’t have to be writers. They could be creators of podcasts, videos, or any form of content as long as you find inspiration from it.
“My first blog is going to be 2500 words,” said no one ever. This is another common deterrent to writing. Often success is measured by the number of words or how many pages your Google Doc is. Instead, it’s better to start small. And by starting small, I don’t mean a blog. One way I realized I should be writing more is by engaging with social media conversations. I would comment on Twitter and LinkedIn threads and even post regularly with my thoughts and experiences. At this point I realized, I could turn some of these posts and insights into more detailed content like blogs.
Have a conversation with yourself
This might sound weird, but it works! Even after you have a great topic and you know what you want to write, the actual writing part can be difficult. At times like this, I recite some of the ideas out loud and I tell myself this is how I want to convey these ideas. Taking notes as you have the conversation is helpful too. Once you finish, you would have captured the key points you want to talk about and documented how you want to express these points. Now, all you need to do is polish up your writing, double-check if your idea comes across clearly and you are done!
You might notice that I didn’t mention checking the engagement of your content as a factor. I did this because you can’t expect fantastic engagement for your first few writing projects. And if the engagement is low, it can demotivate you from writing further. So do check the stats – if it’s good, then great keep writing. If it’s not so good, that’s still okay. As long as you enjoy the process and feel good about what you have shared, the effort is a success. Even if engagement is low, keep writing. Keep monitoring and identifying ways you can improve the engagement. It might take a while to be consistent with your writing efforts, but that’s fine. What matters is that you start somewhere and then gradually keep the momentum.