Writing great content is not a skill—it’s a habit. The key to producing useful and interesting content for marketing is finding a process that works for you and sticking to it.
I know that doesn’t sound sexy, but it’s true: engaging content doesn’t come from inspiration alone. Great marketers use processes to turn their brilliant ideas into stellar posts, ebooks and other pieces of content.
Most content marketers have their own processes for writing more efficiently. If you don’t have one yet, Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs and author of Everybody Writes, has one for you. In partnership with Visual.ly, she produced a writing GPS infographic, a guide to writing your next piece of content.
Here are the 12 steps Anne outlined in the infographic:
1. Determine your business goal.
2. Reframe your idea from the point of view of your audience.
3. Seek out credible data and examples.
4. Organize your thoughts and evidence.
5. Write to one person.
6. Produce the ugly first draft.
7. Take a break and leave some distance between your first and second draft.
8. Rewrite your draft.
9. Come up with an effective headline.
10. Send your second draft to your editor.
11. Format your post for readability.
12. Publish your content (and make it clear what readers should do next).