How to create effective online content

Posted on March 12, 2010


create effective online content
To really stand out from the crowd, you must create interesting content and update it frequently. This means more than merely listing your qualifications on all the various online sites. What makes you unique?

1. Make a list of your areas of expertise.
Making the list was the easy part for me since I have so many interests.

2. Pick one or two areas to focus on.
This was tough for me. But, I sat back and thought about what I was most interested in. For me, it was helping people and companies use technology to improve their business.

3. Research what else is being said online about these areas.
Another easy one for me, since I love looking at different websites and blogs. Research what else is being said online about these areas.

4. Think about what you can add to the topic(s).
Do you have a unique perspective, e.g. a baby boomer who’s now a techie? a corporate person who became an entrepreneur? What problem can you solve for your target audience?

Even if you think your topic is already covered, you can add a twist to it. I know I can’t compete with the big tech blogs like Mashable or Techcrunch. My target audience probably doesn’t even know about these blogs. Even if they’ve heard of these blogs, they probably aren’t regular readers of them. Where I can add value and unique perspective is to use those blogs for ideas, but relate those ideas to personal productivity and personal branding.

5. Experiment!
The beauty of online content is that it’s easy to create, measure and change. You may find that your topic is not
generating any interest. It may be because you haven’t promoted it, or it may be because you’re not meeting
the needs of your target audience.

It can be scary to put yourself out there online. None of us wants to look foolish or make a mistake. I keep in mind adivce I read that once you have a general idea, just do it! Taking that first step can be the hardest.

6. Create new content on a regular basis.
Make a schedule for yourself. How often will you produce? The more frequently you produce, the better. It’s most important be consistent. Posting weekly is a good start.

This can be the toughest one to do. When I started blogging, I would sit down at my computer and tell myself, “now, I’m going to be creative.” As you can imagine, that didn’t work very well. Talk about having writer’s block! Now, I let my mind flow when I’m out taking my walks, or driving in the car, or doing yoga. The ideas just pop into my head.