6 Ways to Create Great Content Even If You're Not a Great Writer
It’s a given fact that publishing a steady stream of content is crucial to gaining links and increasing user engagement. Unfortunately, producing awesome and sharable content time and time again isn’t easy for everyone--especially if they’re not big on writing.
Fortunately though, writing articles isn’t the only way to create content. Just because your CMS gives you a big white box with a blinking cursor in it doesn’t mean you have to fill it with words every single time.
There are a number of other ways in which you can produce content. Explore these options. Use them well, experiment with them, and see what works.
Not sure where to start? The following are just some of the things that you can try:
Create presentations and upload them to Slideshare - Struggling to find the words to express what you need to say? Then put them in a PowerPoint presentation instead. It’s easier for most people to present their thoughts in bullet points rather than paragraphs and readers often appreciate information that’s presented to them in bite-sized pieces.
The next time you find yourself staring at a blank Word document, consider opening up PowerPoint doc instead and start designing your slide deck. Creating an eye-catching presentation is easy even if you’re no graphic designer, thanks to preset templates available through the program and online.
Once your presentation is done, head to SlideShare.net and hit the upload button. What’s great about this site is that aside from letting you upload presentations for free, SlideShare provides social sharing buttons and a commenting feature right on the presentation page itself, so users can easily interact with the content.
SlideShare also lets you paste your presentation’s embed code into your site, so you can easily showcase the slides to your visitors.
Additionally, the service provides limited analytics for free accounts, allowing you to see how many people viewed, liked, or downloaded your presentations.
Produce videos - When done right, video can be a powerful, audience-captivating tool. And best of all, it’s never been this easy to produce it.
So get in front of the camera and share what’s on your mind (as long as it’s beneficial to your audience, of course). Good talking points include trending topics in your industry or current events. You can also conduct an interview with someone in your field and let them do the talking.
If you’re not too comfortable speaking in front of the camera, consider doing video tutorials instead. Use a screencasting program like Jing or Screencast-O-Matic so you can record whatever’s happening on your screen. Or why not create vibrant video presentations with text, clips, and photos? Use accessible video tools such as Animoto or FluxVFX to create them.
As you can see, there are a ton of things that you can do with video so don’t be afraid to use this tool. Just be sure to optimize your videos for search as well. When uploading them, always include relevant keywords in the description and add the URL to your website. Tag videos accordingly and make sure that they’re placed under the right categories. Doing these little things can increase your search visibility immensely, so don’t skimp on them!
Design infographics - Got a bunch of statistics to share? Then why not create an inforgraphic out of all that data? A bunch of numbers and percentages on a page can be pretty boring on their own, but if you throw in relevant images and good design, people will actually read and share them.
Not a graphic designer? Use Piktochart, an online tool that offers great-looking infographic templates for those who aren’t too design-savvy.
Once you’re done with your masterpiece, share away! Publish it on your blog or send the infographic to relevant media outlets to help it gain traction. The press is always eager to publish interesting statistics and using an infographic is inarguably one of the most appealing ways to present data.
Just make sure that the information you’re putting out there is accurate. There are a lot of companies out there that publish infographics even with inaccurate or misleading data just so they can get a few links or publicity. Don’t be one of them. (Google is on to these guys anyway). Only create infographics if you have some genuinely useful information to share.
Share social stories with Storify - Did you come across some interesting updates on Facebook? Perhaps you participated in a stimulating tweet chat and you want to share the insights you picked up. Instead of trying to narrate the conversations through a blog post, use Storify.
This nifty tool lets you find public updates on social media and link them together to tell a story. The service lets you curate updates and comments from various social networks and it allows you to add supplementary text so you can effectively narrate your tale.
Storify lets you pull updates from a variety of social sites including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, Instagram, Google+ and more.
Crowdsource - If you’re suffering from writer’s block or topic fatigue, why not turn to your audience and let them do the writing for you?
A compilation of thoughts, comments, and opinions can make for an interesting blog post, so don’t shy away from asking the audience what they think. Head to your favorite social network and post a question to users. Collect the interesting comments and make a blog post out of them.
If you’re looking for deeper insights and longer answers, you may want check to Quora.com. Members of this Q&A site are really engaged and opinionated so you’ll most likely find some great material here.
Show the behind-the-scenes of your site with screen shots - You don’t always have to produce content out of thin air. Often, material for a new incredible blog post can be found right in your back yard.
Sharing your opinions on public matters is certainly interesting, but don’t neglect the note-worthy things that are happening within the walls of your biz. Users appreciate getting a “behind-the-scenes” look at a business, so every once in a while consider letting them in.
Share photos of what’s happening inside the office.
Why not write profiles on your employees? Not only are these types of content easy to create, but they can also pave the way for deeper connections with your audience.
Image credit: Sean MacEntee on Flickr