OK, so we understand how a blog can build your credibility and establish your personality. And we've figured out what we're going to focus on.
But what on earth do we write about? Where do all the ideas come from?
Well, when you start up your blog, it should be no problem. If you're not initially bursting with ideas in the area you've decided to focus on, then you've picked the wrong area.
That doesn't mean you can just write about anything in that area though. Early on, concentrate on creating your “core content”. Core Content is the central set of ideas, principles, beliefs and insights that you have about your subject area. It's your best stuff that you teach your clients.
Later on, it's OK to do lighter, fluffier posts. Say something controversial. Riff on something off-topic.
But initially you need to establish your reputation with your very best material.
It could be a set of “how to” guides for the key topics in your area of focus. Or it could be a series of posts going into depth in one subect like this series I'm doing on blogs.
But get your good stuff out there quickly.
When those initial ideas dry up – and they will if you blog for any length of time – you need to get more disciplined about creating content.
Keep a notebook or voice recorder with you to capture ideas as they happen. Believe me, if you don't you'll forget them.
Get into the habit of observing life from the viewpoint of your blog. If you write a blog about leadership, for example, then when you're watching sports, or the TV, or kids playing, or a cat stalking a bird or whatever – think about how you could learn something about leadership from that example.
Bring in stories from your daily life, and your history. Your readers will find stories and anecdotes that illustrate a point rather more entertaining and engaging than straight “you should do this” all the time.
Block out time in your calendar to work on content. Set up an editorial calendar (there's a wordpress plugin for that, of course) and stick to it.
The more content you create, the better and faster you'll get at creating it. And don't argue that you're too busy – Chris Brogan and Seth Godin both post almost daily. And they're busy guys too.
The next post in the series is my very best tip on creating content that wins you clients…