This is a guest post by Kosio Angelov.
Ever feel like it takes just too long to write a good blog post?
When you first start writing, you are fueled by passion (and lots of caffeine) to share your thoughts and change the world. Your writing flows and you create magnificent content in no time.
But what about the 10th post? Or the 50th? Doesn’t it take a little… too long?
Sure, you get a really good idea every now and then and you bang out an epic post in record time… but those type of ideas don’t come too often. If your business depends on your ability to create content on a regular basis, you cannot let things to chance. Plus, blogging is just one part of the responsibilities of an online entrepreneur, so you cannot let it take too big of a chunk of your time. You might wonder: how are you supposed to create great content on a regular basis without it taking so much of your time?
You’d think it’s impossible, but it’s not. You just need to have the right structure, a plan of action, a blueprint to follow.
Here is the one that I use that allows me to create powerful blog posts (such as this one) in under 2 hours.
What to write about
Every (great) blog post starts with a topic. You need to know what you are going to write about, before you write about it. Makes sense, right? The question is how do you find great topics on a consistent basis?
Blog on your passion.
Writing can feel like a chore, unless you are actually passionate about the topic. Not “a little bit interested”, but passionate. Blog about a topic that you love so much that you constantly want to learn more about it.
If the passion is there, but you still cannot figure out what to write about, head over to Buzzsumo and enter a general keyword related to your topic.
On the left hand side, select “Past 6 Months” and click on Filter.
You will see a large selection of articles and blog posts sorted by total social media shares. Skim through the titles and you should be able to generate at least a few good ideas. The biggest benefit of finding a topic with this tactic is that you will be writing about something that you know your audience is already interested in.
Total time to find a topic – 7 – 10 minutes.
Structure your ideas and outline your post
Now that you know what you’ll be writing about, fire up WordPress (or your favorite writing app) and create an outline for your post with the various subtopics you want to cover. Write a few words with the specific ideas you have, below each of these subtopics. It does not have to be pretty, grammatically correct, or in great detail. The point is to create the structure for your post. This way you can concentrate on the writing in the next step, not on figuring out what to write about.
Here is the structure I created for this particular post:
- What to write about
- Tweak to perfection
- Create the title
- Post and share
- Over to you
The research and outline should take about 15 minutes.
Let the writing begin
Clear out all distractions. Put your phone on vibrate and preferably in the next room. Close out all social media websites, chat programs, email clients and anything that is not directly involved in the writing process. Close all additional tabs on your browser. Close the door to your room or office. Create a Do Not Disturb sign to let everyone around you know that you are doing something important. Even put your word processor in full screen mode to help you focus better.
Each time a distraction breaks your focus it can take you up to 21 minutes to recover so make sure you have minimized that possibility as much as possible.
Let your creativity flow and just write. Start filling in the blanks under each bullet point and don’t stop until you are done. Don’t worry about grammar, how things sounds and if you can make it read better. Don’t even pay attention to typos. You’ll take care of all of that in the next step. For now, just write.
Time to write: 45 – 60 minutes (depending on your typing speed)
Tweak to perfection
Now that you have done the majority of the work, take a break just for a few minutes. Get up, walk around, stretch a little bit and allow your brain to disconnect from the topic. This will re-energize you and make the editing process much easier and faster.
Start reading and editing your content. Here is what you should look for:
- Cut out the fat – more is not necessarily better. Look for phrases and even sentences that don’t bring extra value and delete them. Run your content through Hemingway.
- Make sure everything is clear – read your blog post as if you know nothing about the topic and try to see if it still makes sense. This can be hard at first, but you’ll get better with every post. This way you can spot inconsistencies, or places in need of a more detailed explanation.
- Add facts – your blog post will be better (and more trustworthy) if you can backup everything that you say with a real-life example, or a study. It does not have to be your example, you can use case studies from other people and companies as long as they support your ideas and you give them proper credit.
- Add visuals – add a couple of emotion-evoking pictures. Add screenshots with examples.
- Correct grammar and typos
Total time for editing – 10 – 15 minutes.
Create your title
I like to write my titles after I’ve completed the entire blog post. This is the only way to ensure that the title, the introduction, the content and the conclusion blend together into one powerful blog post.
Follow this proven formula for creating “magnetic” headlines and write your title.
Total time – 10 minutes
Post and share
If you’ve created your post in a writing application, copy it over to your blogging platform. When you are all set, hit the publish button.
Now, it’s time to make sure your post reaches the maximum amount of people. Share it on Facebook and Twitter. You can use a tool such as Buffer to schedule it to go out in the future. If you have an email list, or a newsletter, create a short email announcing your new blog post.
Total time – 5 minutes.
Over to you now
There you have it! From start to finish in under 2 hours. When you first start following this process, it might take you a little longer to do it and that is perfectly OK. The more you do it, the better (and faster) you’ll get at all the stages. The secret ingredient is to keep going, and write every day. Write even if you don’t feel like it. Just keep at it and you’ll find yourself creating powerful blog posts in record time.
What other ways of speeding up the blog post creation do you use? Share in the comment section below: