Are you working to write valuable content assets for your business?
There’s no time for slacking in the digital content world, and I for one, seem to be running out of hours. Hours that is, for delving into the deep dark depths of not only online freelance writing but, into the oceans of possibilities for producing all kinds of quality web content. Relevant content.Quality #content is the mere minimal measure for content assets for the web at today's standard.Click To Tweet
I’ve dipped and am now sinking hopelessly into the realm of content marketing. Lolling and rolling about in the rough waters of all things digital. The goal: producing and contributing the best of the best possible web content assets.
If producing the best of the best sounds cocky to you, it’s not exactly what I mean to say. But, why not set your sights on doing the best work you possibly can?
I work hard to make the content I write and produce always meet a criterion for quality. But quality is the mere minimal measure for content assets for the web at today’s standard, in my view.
Meet Nev and Noah or is it Noah and Nev?
So, with a little relief (and a chuckle too) I jotted down a few notes while listening to a recent podcast with Neville Medhora and Noah Kagan–best buds, and fat ass sumos for AppSumo. Both are internet marketing dynamos with separate and other online businesses. These guys are mega successful using web content and content tools to produce insane business results.
They’re pretty funny, too. Back to “Krazy Kopywriter” Neville, who notes in the podcast that he is always thinking, “make mine better than theirs” when he is writing or producing content for web projects.
Even when making his About Page, Nev says he is trying to do the all-time best About Page. One reason is so he won’t have to do the work twice. Right? (lol)
But his message to you and me is to “Make it World Class,” and I totally LOVE that!! He conveys it with an attitude like, if you’re NOT going for “World Class,” why bother? I feel you, Nev. I like the thinking there…
Make It World Class
After nearly three decades of running a successful small business, I can honestly say this is a philosophy I have always followed in conducting operations.
What I pay all of my attention to in doing good business all these years is one simple concept. Doing the very best job I can on the job I’m doing and, from there everything else follows. Like, pay. More business. Like new customers.
How do you do the very best job on each job, you ask? Well, just like Nev says, for one thing, you are always trying to do it better than anyone else. Or different than everyone else in your industry or niche. Or in innovative ways that make you stand out. And so on.
Have a “Metric for Happiness?”
As another example, Noah and Nev talk a bit about setting a “metric for happiness” for your project like, “If I sell 10, I’ll be so happy,” and that’s exactly my first marketing plan. I set a goal to get just one new job out of a current job order and to keep building my little company from just that one small goal.
Beyond all expectations, this method nearly eliminated the need for extra marketing, culminating in saving advertising and marketing budget line items, and time, over many years.
And this leads me to what Noah Kagan sums up about Nev’s idea in creating “World Class” work. He explains the goal is to come up with “timeless classics” for your business.
While they are talking about web pages and content, email autoresponder series, sales letters, and email marketing, in truth, the concept of timelessness and cornerstone work is as important in a brick and mortar operation.
For instance, developing an innovation for our services or using procedures against industry standard became the cornerstone or foundational for operations, differentiating the business.
This model builds your reputation and escalates your brand’s signature, just like those evergreen content pieces do online.
Going for “World Class” takes you nowhere but up. That’s exactly how I see it so, from now on I’m moving the needle way past the minimal expectation of quality and going for the gusto.@NevMed...have a 'Metric for Happiness' as the first measure for your 'World Class' content. Yep!Click To Tweet
Waging World Class Weapons (in Content)
Unfortunately, in the digital world of content creation, there is more you will need than your trusty pen, my friends.
And let me just say the extra artillery I am now faithfully using for my professional web writing trade are well beyond what I ever imagined for my plain and simple self. Truthfully, the weapons of mass content construction, now appearing in my content tool kit, both surprise and delight me.
Overwhelming? Maybe. Useful? Beyond wildest expectations! Results? You bet, especially as valuable new skills and deeper understanding of content marketing and marketing automation tools, grows.
Part of my most recent experimentation and ultimate growth comes from trying to extend and expand reach for content assets via repurposing, like some of the techniques from my last post.
Beyond sharing my 5 Step Process for Re-Purposing to PDF’s for SlideShare with you in that post, however; I also presented a video that I created to help make the steps both visual and easier for readers.
Stepping Out to Create a Content MIX
And yikes, it’s me, a writer through and through, working with video! What?
Videos need scripts (hey that means writing) and what better way to get a feel for the process than to experiment and then do it!? Look for more in the video realm from me, for sure.
This year is my year it seems to out and out go for it and if I am, so can you! Tackling technology one platform at a time is suddenly a fun (mostly) more than a scary prospect like it once so very traumatically was.
I am an AWeber software failure, though. I’m just not getting the swing of the email marketing software to make it do what I want. I suppose I need to lock myself away with it for, well, for as long as it takes but, let’s get back to building your weapons of mass content production…
Here’s a rundown of some of my newest toys, uh I mean tools, for premium content production. Feel free to try them out for yourself. I’m pretty frugal with my software spending but, I feel wealthy like a king with all the great pieces that are now part of my content marketing “stack.”
Recent Resources for Creating Content
1.) Creating Visual Assets:
- For Video: Camtasia (also usable within PowerPoint), Vimeo, and YouTube–for a free channel, so I started there. But if you do a video beyond 15 minutes long, no YouTube (though there is a way to get permission for longer videos) so Vimeo made sense because “how-to” videos can go 15 to 40 minutes or more to cover a method. The other plus with Vimeo is the stripped-out commercials, unlike YouTube who adds them to your videos. I also set up inexpensive lighting (including backlighting as Wistia suggests) and designed a little backdrop using a table linen and rope to eliminate distractions. A Blue Yeti Mic and a Logitech Camera and I’m a studio…oh oh oh…oooo
- Video Animations: Oh, my gosh. It’s so exciting to complete my first animation, script, and production, using new animation software, from Animatron. I think I’m using the Animatron Studio but, since I’ve barely figured out video in the first place, I’m delighted to find at least an introductory ability to play around with this stuff. Lots of other plans for creating with animation, and soon, I hope!
Mixing Stills and Graphics in Video Content
- For other Visual Designs: Visme lets you make interactive infographics of all sorts and also has Slide Presentation features allowing sound and other special effects. There’s a free version to try though I did upgrade a level for more features. I totally need to take more time with this app. It’s an easy interface on the surface but, I’m just not doing everything right when I download or share because sometimes things don’t work right, like movables and links. I know, I’m picky. I want every little thing to work, and worse, it’s probably me:(
- Photos and some other Designs: DepositPhoto is getting to be a favorite with great quality, variety, and ease of use. Twice I took advantage of AppSumo deals for photos but, I’ve noticed some pretty awesome offers on the site, too. Ana Hoffman from Traffic Generation Cafe lead me to a free photography site with free-use allowed and high-quality photographs, called Pixabay. I used it to create a recent (view it below) SlideShare featuring Ann Handley’s tips for writing ridiculously good content and, for me, that SlideShare has a lot of views! It also inspired my next presentation, and I can’t wait to show it to you! I’m working with PowerPoint at Ana’s urging for SlideShares now, and well, I haven’t done a SlideShare since 1999 so, still learning there, too.
My Go-To Jack-0f-All-Trades Tool
- Everything Visual: Canva is likely to be in use working with or within any of the above! It is a lifesaver in your favorite cherry flavor, and I use it for more and more every single day I think. Magical Canva is one of the first tools I learned about for web writing or blogging, and I truly can’t say enough about how handy dandy Canva is for adding extra oomph to your content, even your business.
2.) Content Asset Creation:
- Scrivener for IOS. I’ve wanted to get this writing app but, heard there’s a learning curve and so was mostly afraid. When I saw it for $20 on iPad and knew the long-awaited version was available, I decided to check it out. Yep, I’m so glad I did. Sure, I’m still figuring it out (which means it keeps getting better) but, so far, I’m smitten. I may get the Windows version for my desktop, too, but via my iOS version, I can access it on three devices. And, it integrates with DropBox which I’m just starting to use as well. Keeping Scrivener stuff in DropBox saves space on devices and yet, is accessible anytime.
- Google Docs. I’ve been using Google Docs for a while. My trust in using it for writing projects is growing. I’m running into editors who like Google Doc submissions for collaboration and revisions back and forth and, it’s accessible across devices. But, the very best thing about using it is the rapid autosave functions, which has truly saved me in a big way. I can’t say the same for either of the other big boys, Microsoft and Apple! Both their word processor apps, Word and Pages, let me down big and I mean BIG. You can’t replicate or easily re-write pages and pages of work, so both these apps are OUT on my most important work, particularly original work. They each burned me once but, once is enough for me. Adios. (One small negative with Google Docs for content creators is it’s not compatible with Grammarly.) I’m using Grammarly for last check edits and decided the pro version is worth it for me to catch sentence tense snafus, for example.
Organizing Your Writing Adds Challenges Too
- Trello and Pocket. Both apps are a dream for research and filing important articles, posts, research data, and more. But, my long-time love affair with Trello is stronger than ever, and I don’t know if I will ever be able to live without it. Sounds so ridiculous to say about an app but, there it is. I’m beyond love, beyond hooked. I’m straight up addicted and, it’s more fun and interesting now that I’ve had a couple of opportunities to collaborate on boards with other writers, editors, and such. Just wow. I don’t care who you are, or what you’re into; these apps are helpful digital organizers. Pocket is new for me too but, I like having a library-like stock of miscellaneous articles and posts I’ve personally collected all available in full form, rather than as a collection of research links only. I tend to save things of interest here, beyond research topics, too.
Oh, my gosh. I’ve talked about more than a dozen tools I’m using for creating content and guess what; they’re more I still want to share with you! I think, like these, you can add enormous value to your business, content asset management, and content production by combining talent and tools.
Together, your content will be more lethal, and certainly fresh and uniquely you!
Let me know if I forgot one of your key content tools or, if you need content help, I’m always here:)
Reminders from Ann Handley for ridiculously, ludicrously, good content:
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