Content Creation Strategy | Freelance Circus | Skillshare

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Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      1 Intro


    • 2.

      2 Big Picture Goals Part 1


    • 3.

      3 Big Picture Goals Part 2


    • 4.

      4 Content Pyramid Part 1


    • 5.

      5 1 Content Pyramid Part 2


    • 6.

      6 Publication Plan


    • 7.

      7 Ideation and Brainstorming


    • 8.

      8 Ideation and Brainstorming


    • 9.

      9 Content Publication Strategy Part 1


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About This Class

This course digs into how to set up a content strategy from A to Z, including yearly, monthly, weekly, and daily content goal setting, ideation and brainstorming, trickle-down content creation using a content pyramid, and even best practices and tips for when and where to publish to social media. 

You can find all class documents using this Dropbox link.

Meet Your Teacher

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Freelance Circus

Empowering freelancers across the globe


We train, equip and support freelancers to tackle their project and client management, find work, and build on their skill sets. A rising tide raises all ships and we believe strongly in the power of helping independent workers worldwide create dependable incomes to they can support their families and do meaningful, fulfilling work in the process.

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Level: Beginner

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1. 1 Intro: Hi, My name's Jenna. Welcome to the content, calendar and strategy course. I'm very excited about what the's seven lessons have in store for you. Whether you work in retail, whether you are in the creative arts industries, whether you are a professional service provider or anything in between, we can all benefit from knowing the content that we want to produce and when we want to produce it. Because at the end of the day, while having a large quantity of things out there into the world, on social media and on our website is important, even more important than that is making sure that what we put out there is of high quality . So these seven lessons are gonna walk you through everything from developing your big picture plan all the way down to the strategies of wend opposed to certain social media platforms and everything from there. So I'm very excited. Make sure that you check out all of the downloads that are included in these lessons, and let's dive in 2. 2 Big Picture Goals Part 1: in this lesson, we're gonna talk about creating your big picture plan. When you're a freelancer, it is overwhelming at times because you don't just wear one hat or two hats. You wear all the hats. You are equal parts marketer and content developer. You are the CPI a usually for your business. You are the person that's doing all the sales for your business, and you're also trying to get all the work done and keep your clients and your customers happy. The biggest thing that you could do to get yourself on the right track with your content production calendar is to make some goals and then figure out how that applies to the content that you want to create. So what this looks like is yearly monthly, weekly and daily goal setting. The important thing is, is we want to go in a clockwise organizational fashion. We don't want to go daily, weekly, monthly yearly. We want to go the other way around to make sure that we're setting ourselves up for success . The worst thing that we can dio is start over here and be like, Oh yes, I could do 10 instagram posts and I could dio, you know, 13 Facebook outreaches and I could do an email every day. And then, as you see this start to move into your weekly and her monthly, realizing that's hundreds of pieces of content that you have no hope of of doing so. If you go this way, you'll think emulator, Trust me, so make sure that you download the attached PdF and go through this. It should take you probably 10 minutes to an hour, depending on how detailed do you want to go? Make sure that you also download and complete the audience analysis and the industry information. Pdf, which will help you dig deeper into the people that you're trying to serve in the industry that you work in. And then once you've completed all of those, come back here and let's talk about what this looks like when it's built out. 3. 3 Big Picture Goals Part 2: Welcome back to this lesson. I hope that you found the three pdf documents that you worked through to be insightful and also easy to complete. I took the liberty of filling this out while you were doing all of that. And let's work through it. So starting with yearly, let's say, for example, you want to start a podcast and launch a training program. That means that at some point in the next 12 months, it could be three months, and now it could be the full 12 month period. You want to accomplish these things, knowing that now we work backwards so our monthly goals are too long. Block posts too short block posts 3 to 4 podcast episodes and wanted to training module increments recorded each and every month. Now the reason that I like to do some that are hard and fast, like to it's a set number and some that have a little bit more wiggle room like 3 to 4 or 1 to 2, is that life happens and it's important that you set not on Lee high end goals that our content production opportunities that you think that you can hit, but that also give room for grace, because if an emergency comes up or you are really burned out but work and you only get three podcast episodes instead of four done, you don't feel like you have wasted your time or you don't feel bad that you didn't accomplish an objective. So sometimes it is nice to give yourself these wiggle room areas now moving on Taking Miss and Moving into the week. Legal's Let's say you want to do 1 to 2 links in posts. 3 to 4 long format Facebook posts. That's more than just like a 200 word or 200 character. I mean, post. It's something that's going to be lengthy. It's gonna take your readers 3 to 4 minutes to read all the way through. Wonder to Facebook or Instagram lives, and you want to email your list once a week. Now, with that in mind, something to keep at the top of your mind. Make sure, because once a week would equal for a month, two times a month at minimum, you want to be reaching out to your audience via email with free resource is you don't want to sell to your audience more than twice in a month. Or at the very least, you don't want to sell to them more than you've offered them something of value. Because what's gonna happen is as I'm sure you've done, I know that I've done. I go through my email and I'm like, Ah, and I just hit the unsubscribe. You don't want that to happen. If you're constantly adding value to the people that follow you and you're not always asking them to give you their money, then they're gonna pay attention for a lot longer. Now we move into daily. Okay, let's say that daily you wanna post on instagram and daily you want to respond to messages . This is a meaningful action plan and one that's going to be fairly easy to to implement every day. The only thing that you need to consider based on this school plan would be posting and responding to messages. You could even schedule your posts now, which makes it incredibly easy to stay on track and not procrastinate and even more importantly, to knock it overwhelmed. So in the next video, we're gonna be talking about how you take all of this and put it into a functional publishing plan. So make sure that you head on over to that lesson, download the supporting documents and start looking through them so that you're prepared to follow along the next lesson with me. 4. 4 Content Pyramid Part 1: welcome it to lesson for today. We're going to be discussing the content pyramid. So it's a super super fancy, just getting very, very simple way of organizing your content in a trickle down way, starting at the top and working your way down into smaller, more easily digestible pieces of content and hopefully saving you time in the process. Now this is not an original idea to me. It has been around since the dawn of time. Practically there are so many different thought leaders and experts out there who teach various different ways to implement this. And this is just the way that we've adapted that in in our companies that we've run over the years into a way that the works for us. So if you find that a different way of utilising this principle works for you, adopt it, make it work for you, cause at the end of the day, that is the goal that you come out of this learning on the other side with a functional plan for scheduling and strategizing your content. That's it. So let's dive into it. We started the top with what I call the PPC that is our primary piece of content. Know what would that look like? That might be a podcast. That might be a long log post. Okay, that might be a YouTube video. No matter what it is, it's something that has incredible value. You have put a lot of time and thought into creating this. You have researched it, you know that. It's something that your audience wants to hear from you about. And the biggest thing here is to spend a huge chunk of time really getting it right the first time. Because the information that you create and pull into here is going to trickle down, toe everything else to come. So if you didn't get enough information here, if you didn't do enough legwork, if you didn't put enough value into this right off the bat, then as it begins to trickle down, it's gonna lose a lot of its potency. Whereas if you fill it chock full with great, you know, snippets of information data. If you've cited sources, you're gonna have a ton of great things to pull from when you get down here. So moving on to what I calls em, see the medium sized content Super fancy again. This could be more like a short block posts. Okay, I would consider long to be in the 1500 plus where it's Kate. That is gonna take the average reader 3 to 5 minutes or more to read. Depending on how complicated to make it a short block post is gonna be in the 400 800 word range on average. That's approximately two pages of typing double spaced. No, that is medium chain content. What else would work? Is that OK? Well, what about a short YouTube video? Okay, if you're long, one is, say, 30 minutes. The short one, maybe five minutes. It might be something that you film and go live with on Facebook or on Instagram K. But what you've done is you've taken this information and then you pull from it, you condense it. It is something that is like it, but a little bit different. So what might that look like? We'll get to that here very, very soon. Let's talk first about BC, your bite size content, and I would recommend dividing this into two formats text and video audio. Now, this could be anything. This could be a 15 2nd ad that you wrote on Facebook that promotes your long chain content here. It could be a short little tweet that you send out. It could be an instagram image that just has a quote, a pocho on it from a post that you wrote and all of this serves toe link back. So what you end up with is this circle of information that both pulls from and complements one another. So it all makes sense and you've done the research once, and you found a way to recycle and reuse that content in a fresh way over and over and over again so that it saves you time and that over the course of it, you've become an expert on this one thing that you've created content on that helps you become more of a thought leader to your industry. And it helps your audience trust you more as well. So make sure that you go through the document that is attached, fill this out for yourself and then head on back over here and see how I've filled it out for an example for us to go through 5. 5 1 Content Pyramid Part 2: Welcome back. All right, let's take a look at what the content pyramid looks like once it has been filled out. So I have two examples for you. The first is our main piece of content is a 2000 word block posts on the benefits of remote work. And again, this is just an example. Whatever you choose for your primary piece of content may be vastly different. So for this example, though we've created this research heavy blawg post on all of the benefits toe working remotely. We've published it to our website, and now we're gonna take all of the information that we came up with when we created this content and we're gonna use it to create a bunch of other things minimal work for maximum payout. So for my medium chain content, I may consider short Facebook posts that use pull quotes directly. From my information, it's not plagiarizing because it's my content. And Google isn't gonna look at it poorly as being duplicate content because what I'm going to do is I'm going to also then link to the main block post as well. That creates that closed loop of information. Another option might be to utilize Lincoln by publishing approximately 50% of my article on LinkedIn and then linking out the remainder of the article. This is going to generate interest. It is also going to utilize the linked in community, which is completely different than Facebook. Instagram, etcetera. So that's my medium chain. And then I'm gonna trickle that down even further to my bite size chunks. So for my text chunks, I could do Instagram and Facebook pull quotes over images, k, these air just static images that maybe have just 5 to 8 word sentences that I, you know, things that I thought I said well in the article and they Popo here. And then I can also again put a link in my bio that links back to this main piece of content. Video wise, it's difficult sometimes to go from something that's just the written word and utilizing video chunks. But something that you could do is you could take all of this knowledge that you already have. And you could go live on instagram on Facebook on any other platform that you like discussing the interesting data that you found when you created this piece. Um It's something that is again, relatively easy to do because you already have all that information pulled together. And it's something that is a huge value to your followers because you're not giving completely similar information. When you go live, you're gonna be summarized in it in a unique and fresh way, pulling and things that just come to your mind in the heat of the moment. So it's going to feel fresh. It's going to feel new. Even if they read this. Saw all of these saw your pull quotes. They still may learn something new from here. You go live talking about the very same topic, something else that you could do to video support. Your main piece of content is to do an interview with somebody that knows something about this. It could be, ah, colleague. It could be someone that you connected with on social media that is also very knowledgeable about the topic. It's a very, very easy and quick way toe add value to your audience. Another option would be doing quick 15 2nd voiceover clips where you're just reading your content or you are seeing in front of a camera, much as I am now delivering that content very briefly. And then you can run that as an ad that also links to your website. So that is just one example. So for this example, let's say that you wanted to create a YouTube video. Maybe it's a graphic design tutorial. Okay, so you create the video. It's 10 15 20 minutes long. However you get it published. But now what? Kate will. First and foremost, you need to make sure that your YouTube description and all of that is S e o optimized and that you have taken advantage of that space to either post a full transcript of what you talked about. Or even just a small snippet, because that's going to really, really help with the Google out algo rhythms k. Beyond that, though, you need to create a transcript of that video. Okay, you can have someone do it for you, or you can do it for yourself. It won't take very long and then reframe it a little bit, and then you can toss it up on your website as a block. Boast, it didn't take you much more time. You've already researched and created this content. It belongs to you. It's your information. It's your thoughts. But now, instead of it just being an audio format, it's also in written word format that you can link to. In addition to hear, you can link to one on one another, and it closes that information loop for you. Another thing that you could do for this medium chain content is you can create long form Facebook posts that are blend of the transcripts, snippets and also additional info that you feel like throwing in. At the time. You could link to another video that you've created that has similar supporting content, etcetera. OK, so now we've filtered it down to the medium chain, and now we're gonna talk about the bite size content, examples of text you can pokes post links to related resource is, you can create short 400 word block posts with related ideas and tips. You consent? I didn't write it down here, but you could send out an email to your followers saying, Hey, new YouTube video is up. Check it out here. There's also a supporting block post here. You can check it out, and in one fell swoop, you've boosted traffic to your YouTube channel and your website. Now let's get down to the video option. If I was doing this, I would also make sure that I'm pulling out 30 to 62nd clips for my instagram for my Facebook page and one YouTube video could generate how many of these? I mean, you could have 10 2030 clips that you're pulling and just exporting and using as short, quick wins for your social media content. I would create 123 minute, little bit longer snippets to share unlinked in, um or again fill in the blank. Your social media of choice. I would do short live items, whether again, on instagram, where your Facebook where you're showing related content. You're not just regurgitating this. This is alive where you're saying, Hey, in my graphic design tutorial that you may have seen on YouTube where I taught you how to create a graphic for a T shirt, Did you know that you could take these graphics and you can also do X, y and Z with um, right, you can put him on a sticker, you can do whatever you could even show them. Show yourself doing it and it's similar content, just repurpose in a new, fresh way. I would also pull snippets as ads to promote your YouTube traffic or your website traffic. Again, you're taking this information that you have spent a lot of time creating. This is good stuff. This is the gold right here, and you're finding ways to pull from it, to repurpose it, to trickle down, that content, to populate everything else that you want to push content to its gonna. It's gonna fuel the fire of your email list. It's going to keep your social media accounts poppin and alive and fresh for your followers , and it's going to do all of that with you having to do minimal work for maximum reward. Hopefully learning how to use the content pyramids will help you develop content that you're excited about. And that makes sense. Helping you work smarter and not harder by working through things that you're really, really proud of that you've worked really hard on. It can help you trickle down that content across all of your content production outlets, whether that social media, your website, your YouTube channel, whatever that may be at the end of the day, though. Make sure that you're creating these pyramids as often as you like for a variety of different types of media. But keeping in mind your big picture publishing plan so you're not overextending yourself. At the end of the day, we want not just quantity but high quality content that you could be proud of. 6. 6 Publication Plan: So in this lesson, we're gonna talk about creating your publishing plan. I like to do this using the template that you can also download and follow along with its A word document template. And it's gonna basically help you take everything that you want to create, whether it is block, post, social media, etcetera, and you're going to go through it and you're gonna really think about what you're comfortable creating and fleshing out the themes and the topics that you want to talk about with your audience from now through the end of the year. So let's head on over and get going on that. Okay, so let's dive into the content publication plan. Essentially, what this template is is it will walk you through all of the content format types that you may be interested in utilising for yourself, your business or whatever you are creating content for So first up podcasts. Podcasts are a great way to get video or audio or a mix of both out there. You can put it on YouTube. You can embed it into your website. You can pull chunks from it and distributed across your social media. However you choose to use it. A podcast is, well, A. They're very popular right now and be it's just a great way to just kind of free flow your stream of consciousness thought if you want, and then edit it down to something usable later. It's a very, very, very simple way to get started delivering video and audio format content. Next up, we have your website. Typically you're general website. Text will be set, for example, your home page text. You're probably not changing that up on the regular. The same was like you're about information, your product information so on, so on, so forth. But blog's, on the other hand, are usually a specific page on your website, and those should be updated very, very regularly. So that's what this lines for your email list that is obviously goes without saying emails that you send out to people who have subscribed to hear from you. We have Facebook page, which is different than the Facebook group. Your Facebook page is essentially the public facing side of your business or your online presence. Ah, group is something that someone has to actually subscribe, usually to see unless you make it completely public. And typically, while there is a lot of overlapping content, a lot of people prefer to have the Facebook group information be a little more personal, maybe a little more conversational. And often there's things that are posted to the group that air just unique to that as an incentive to get people to be a part of both of those things. Next up, we have the instagram pains with that, there's obviously some things that you can do from that you could do. Instagram lives. You could instagram stories, but I've just classified it. Here is instagram as a whole. There's YouTube linked in if you want to have or already have a membership area to your website. Um, that is what this here is for. And obviously there are infinite, almost media outlet options. I've listed a few of the most popular here We have Tic Tac, Tumblr, Twitter, Pinterest, reddit, stumble upon flicker, meet up. And then, of course, there's print publications and local advertising outlets. So moving on through this document, you have an area to fill in major industry dates and holidays. OK, every industry has specific things that are unique to it, and also that they can branch off of. For example, Christmas is a huge holiday for retail stores, but virtually anyone can take advantage. Quote of this holiday and find a way to put out content revolving around it. If you are an artist, maybe you want to make and sell Christmas cards. If you are a graphic designer, maybe you are doing something along that vein as well. If your photographer, maybe you want to discuss you know how to take great holiday photos at home, the opportunities and options are endless. All right, next page. Here we have monthly content theme ideas. I 100% recommend that you look at the year as a whole and figure out different themes to talk about every month. This. Make sure that the content that you're putting out feels intentional. It feels purposeful. It feels like it fits within part of a bigger picture, so each month can be different. Or you could have one theme that spans multiple months. However you choose to do it. This is going to serve as essentially your roadmap for the type of content that you are producing each and every month. With that, said I'll pause this video and restarted New and And I will show you how I flesh this out into sample information and you can see kind of how it would work for you when you go to print this out and fill it out for yourself. Okay, so now let's look at these samples that I've pulled together. So an idea for how, if I were filling out this media publication plan for myself or for a client, I would look at OK, so podcasting, perhaps once every week is what I want to do with every other episode featuring a guest. And that's all I want to put in here. Feel free, though toe flesh it out more. If you have ideas for guess that you wanna have on for content that you want to cover. You could absolutely turn this into a much more detailed outline, or you can leave it like this to start out with whatever works for the way that your brain uniquely works. Next, I have the website so twice weekly, I'll have a short 300 to 400 word blawg that highlights, for example, maybe a money making website for my clients once a week maybe, Ah, a little bit longer. 600,000 word blogged that highlight something useful. And then twice a month, I wanna have a longer 1500 to 3000 were blogged. That relates to the month steam and going back to the content pyramid. Here it's it's going to have the trickle down effect. So I'm not necessarily coming up with 100% unique content for every single one of these pieces. I'm gonna take the long form content here that I've researched, that I've looked into a lot and then I'm gonna find ways to pull chunks of that may be rewarded a little. Maybe bring in additional resource is to flush out these smaller pieces. So I'm doing the hard work once and then finding a way to refresh it and put it out there for people to read. Okay, Next, we have the email, lest, ah, one time a week, maybe an email with links to the blog's that just went live and then a couple times a month , including information on the month's theme articles. Those again, these longer 1500 to 3000 word blog's one time a month, maybe selling them something. If you have a product or something new that you want to promote to them and then occasionally I also recommend doing a giveaway or promoting freebies. If you have them available again, you need toe a justice to what works for you. Maybe you want to send something out twice a week. You know, if you are posting also YouTube videos and things like that, if you have a lot of content that you want to keep your email list aware of, then by all means adjust to make sense for your industry and for your audience. Next, I have my Facebook page. So twice a week I'm gonna highlight a resource that relates to the theme 14 times a month. I'm gonna link to every block post, and how I arrived at this 14 times a month was I figured out how many total blog's I was writing. And then, obviously, one time for each block or twice reach blogger. I'm then linking to that on my Facebook page, and then once a week, I'm posting a video to something that I found quickly, you know, sharing it, and then once a week, just kind of reminding people to join both my email less and my Facebook group. Obviously you can adjust this, you know, to fit your unique needs. And then this is where we get into the Facebook group being slightly different, but also very similar to the Facebook page. So for the Facebook group, four times a week posting something relevant instead of maybe two times a week. Because again, the whole purpose of this your page is, is typically your outward facing your very public information you're getting people interested on. Then the group should function to be a place where the people who are the most engaged with your content for them to come and for them to get access to additional information that is not really shared anywhere else. Okay, so maybe once a week, I'll post a live video that that relates to the month steam. Maybe I'll pose an interview or something that's of unique interest just of these people and a lot of this. A lot of what will come out of this group, especially once it really starts to gain traction, is people will ask questions. They will start discussing things amongst themselves. They will share with you what they want to know. And so the content that you post here a lot of times will be kind of user generated, which is really, really awesome. Um, it eliminates the pressure from you to have to come up with unique things all the time because the people who are a part of that group and who are engaging with your kind of high level primary pieces of content, they're going to give you insights into what else they want to know. It's really, honestly, the more than I have, you know, worked with things this way through various companies, the more I find that that these Facebook groups or just a really, really, really great way to connect with the people who are following you and who really care about the content that you're putting out. So let's move on to Instagram twice a week. Highlighting related resource. As you can see group, it's essentially going to be a reflection of what my main Facebook page has. It is OK for Instagram and Facebook to have, I would say 80 90. He almost even 100% overlap because it's a different audience and its contents going out there in a different way, So having a little bit of overlap is not a bad thing at all. In fact, it takes a lot of pressure off of you trying to come up with completely unique content for all of your social media outlets. Next, if you have a you tube page, typically once a week is a great thing to strive for. Linked in similar once a week posting a video or article. Ah, big thing on Lincoln is also sharing things that other people, other professionals have shared. That reciprocity is really a big part of what people look for in Lincoln. So I would strive toe, maybe post a unique thing for my in once a week and then once or twice a week also share something that someone in my similar circle has has posted. If you have a membership, I would say a few times a month, putting unique live content out there and then depending on your your niche for us, it's like a new mini course once a month. Okay, so now let's look into the major industry dates and holidays. So for the example that I pulled together here is a graphic designer, okay? In January. Obviously, there's New Year stuff that we can piggyback on. And then we I put shot show here because we used to do a lot of work for people in the gun industry. And shot show is a huge. It's like there there once a year down in Vegas. Everyone is there, and so we do a lot of or we used to do a lot of work for companies that needed print materials for this, that they needed booths designed. So if you were a graphic designer, think through your target audience, your ideal client, and then think through what types of conventions or holidays or things like that are a big part of that niche audience and then work backwards. And if you put it in here, then you know OK, so in January, such and such is happening. That means that several months before, so maybe as early as October, I need to start reaching out to either existing clients or potential clients that I want to work with, saying, Hey, I know X, Y and Z is coming up. Can I help you create content for this or create media for this. It's a great way to know that you always have something potentially coming up and to keep top of mind for the people that you already work for and the brands and companies that you want to work for next Super Bowl. That's a biggie. March March Madness. Obviously, then you have tax time. A lot of people are getting their tax returns and businesses, especially. This is where they kind of look at what money they might want to put towards things like branding and marketing, that although they should be putting money towards all year long, a lot of people see it as a as not a necessity. And so if they happen to get a tax break, get a tax return, then they may be looking to spend that money. So tax time, April is often when graphic designers see on uptick in projects. Okay, then in May, you have things like single Tamayo, the Kentucky Derby, right? Maybe you want to do work in in these areas. You have Mother's Day, which is a biggie for card design for apparel design. Um, same thing in June with Father's Day. It's the start of summer, right? It's, I mean, who fests who best is the largest three on three tournament in the world. That happens in Spokane, Washington. Every year we're talking tens of thousands of teams and people converging on this little town for the weekend. So if you are into apparel design of here into kind of sporting good design, you know this is a great way. Teoh. Try to find clients or do you work for existing clients? Then, of course, there's the Fourth of July. In August, there's the Australian Surf Festival. If you do work or want to do work for, um, like surf companies, right? So it's it's looking through all of these things and figuring now industries that you want to do work for and making sure that you have put them on this calendar So you know when they're coming up so you can keep it top of mind as you're pursuing the work that you want to. Dio and I went through and I came up with another sample. You know, maybe you're an artist. You create art new Stella online. You might have a lot more things fleshed out like, let's say you sell cards. Or let's say you sell apparel, all right. You would want to make sure that you are taking advantage of people who are looking for Oh , it's gallon Tynes Day, which is typically the day before Valentine's Day. People are looking for cute stuff to give to their friends. So having stuff made and knowing what's coming. Random act of kindness. State Black History Month, right? Dr Seuss's birthday, National Caffeine Awareness Month. Okay, coffee related stuff. Anybody in March, right? So having a big picture idea of popular holidays, popular events, popular things that are happening around the world and figuring out how to harness the excitement and the trending searches that are happening online for these things already, and figuring out how you can transition that into the content and the the products and anything else that you are putting out there. Okay, so now let's talk about my monthly content themes. So let's say you're a graphic designer. Well, how would this look? Fleshed out? Well, maybe in January, you focus on 2020 predicted design trends. Okay, You may be put out content for, you know, new products that air dropping. I think every year, Pantone puts out a color of the year. What is that? Let's talk about that. Um, you can distill that down into content theme ideas that then you're not scrambling or coding, and I have to get a block post up this week. What am I gonna write about? You already have an idea. Okay, well, let's look and see what's what's trending. Maybe in February, you talk about using color to create a desired emotional outcome. Awesome. That right there could be the topic for your primary piece of content that you know, long form Blawg posts that then you are going to use to disseminate down into even your bite sized chunks for social media. If you're a photographer, same thing you can look into gay shooting with an iPhone. Oh, our social media images. 101 Maybe in April it's Portrait's that pop in November, working with the golden hour. I don't know you have options. If you're a writer or if you're an editor, you could look into things like Okay, how do I polish a resume? Um, maybe it's How do I, you know, read to become a better writer? Here's some great books to read Write. It doesn't always have to be 100% aligned with your industry. OK, it could be a fringe thing that you can, you know, kind of angle in a unique way. So it's interesting to the people who, ah, follow you. Maybe you're a Web developer, okay? And you are talking about squarespace or Shopify or like how to create a minimalist website design or, you know, let's talk about Parallax and infinite scrolling and the the options with this are truly endless guys. At the end of the day, the goal is, do the work up front, come up with your ideas up front so that then all you have to do moving forward is look to this road map and then create content because trying to be creative and trying to brainstorm and come up with something unique every single time you I want to put a piece of content out there is so much more difficult when you have a well fleshed out roadmap and you know exactly what you want to create when you want to create it. It makes it so that you don't procrastinate and put things off to the last minute, okay? And it makes us so that the quality of what you're putting out is where you want it to be, because even worse than being inconsistent with the continent you put out there is putting out something that's just kind of, you know, haphazard and not well thought through because the people that read what you put out or that watched the videos that you put out or listen to the podcast that you put out, Okay, if if you're not planned, If it if it doesn't look like you've done your homework, okay, they're gonna listen to someone else that feels more like they are an expert in the field. And at the end of the day, you can come across as an expert in your field just by simply planning knowing in advance what you want to dio and then creating something that's of value to the people that follow you. 7. 7 Ideation and Brainstorming: and this us, and we're gonna talk about ideation and brainstorming. How do you take a topic and generate from that a ton more ideas that you can write about record videos about Go live about? OK, so let's begin with A I like to begin with a really blank paper. You might want to use a sticky note. You might want to use notebook paper. It doesn't matter. The tools that you use what matters is the end goal. So you may or may not be familiar with the idea of mind mapping. While there's obviously a ton of different ways to brainstorm, mind mapping is a way that I have found to be incredibly valuable. So with mind mapping, you start with one central idea. So, for example, let's say that you're a graphic designer trying to figure out topics that you can block about you could make tutorials about, and you want to talk to an audience about entrepreneurs. Okay, all right, that is our central topic slash audience. There could be overlap. Okay, So if I want to target entrepreneurs and I want to market topics that will appeal to them, okay, I might start by thinking. What do they need as they build their business? Well, they need a logo. Beyond that, they need colors. Okay. They need to know how to even to structure their business case. So maybe business set ups, OK, once they have a logo, once they have a color palette, they need more comprehensive brandy. Eventually, they're gonna need a website. Probably. They're gonna need social media and so on and so forth. So from this one idea, this one topic, this one central thought we've come up with a bunch of ideas that now we can begin to break down even further. Okay, If I want to talk to potential entrepreneurs about logo design, what elements are a part of that? Well, we could discuss word marks. We could discuss the importance of, um, typography. Okay, When it comes to colors, we could talk about mood because different colors set different tones. K. I could do a full article just on color theory and how it affects our feelings when it comes to business set up. Maybe you wanted to make a video about how to organize, stay and plan okay for their social media. Maybe you are making the little alive videos about kind of attract followers. Maybe it's a simple as how to design cover images for your Facebook page. Okay, the options are endless here. At the end of the day, we end up with trickled out effects that leave us with usable topics that now we can write about. We can record live videos about and so on and so forth. You can do this with anything. It can be a large scale or a small skill as you want it to be. You could start with the central idea of one thing. You could say I want to create ideas regarding creating content for logos. Okay, swells. Here's our logo idea down here. And then you begin the branching offs process from their case color marketing, whatever else you want it to be. At the end of the day, though, what you want to do is make sure that you've got at least two different levels filled out. You don't want to create your central item and then just stop here at this level. You want to go from here beyond to something else. It's even better if you can get one further. Okay, one further from that. What might that look like? Well, if I'm going to go from here toe logos to typography, I might go one off and to start talking about the individual funds and how those have been used successfully. You could do brand analysis on Starbucks on FedEx on these popular companies that have word marks for their logos and how that typeface works beautifully for creating brand recognition. Okay, the further out that you can go in this process, the better. So now you're going to take the download that is attached to this lesson, and you're going to come up with a few brainstorm ideas for topics and you're gonna go from there. Good luck. 8. 8 Ideation and Brainstorming: Now that we've spent some time learning about mind mapping and how this works for our brainstorming and ideation of topics, we're gonna head over toothy Goodall Internet and figure out how to take our brainstorming to the next level. Mind mapping has a lot to do with our own internal thought process and how we think through things. And now we're going to talk about how can you find ideas and top of generation by piggybacking off of what other people have already come up with? Because there is, at the end of the day, nothing new under the sun. And there's no problem with looking outside of your own brain in your own thought process to find inspiration. So let's head on over and dig into that right now. So let's talk about how to go online and brainstorm topics and ideas and find resource is to support the content that we want to put out there. So to start with, I've identified two different kind of main level topics. If I was flushing this out in a mind map like I showed you earlier, these two things would be at the center and then I would be filling them out from there. But for online, let's say that we want to look up Brandy, and I'm gonna go here. New tab. And I was gonna type in branding. Okay, immediately. A 1,000,000 things come up. I mean, it's a very, very hot topic. The first thing that you want to do, though, is you want to come over here. You want to click tools, and you want a just this year because we want current things to come up. We don't want to be basing what we're looking at off of. Ah, random article from 2010. Okay, so I would recommend looking in the past month. Okay, so right there. Boom. It sucks up those search results, and we get something that's a lot different. Okay, so I'm gonna look through here the since four days ago, and Google gives you these little wanted to sentence kind of bite sized chunks of what each link contains. So I'm going to just open up a few quick tabs here, okay? Rating An identity. Bringing in marketing what came first k, And keeping in mind that what you're clicking on, they need tohave veracity. So this creative dot com e. I mean, that is probably going to be something that I care about. All right, I'm not I've never heard of this. The primacy dot com before, but here it says agency work. So perhaps that's something that would be of interest to a graphic designer. Um, rebranding a Brandon agency. Okay, I'm not sure if that's when that we want we're gonna go down here. Customers bringing tools. Sure. Let's open that up. Brandon. Look, design, open that up. All right? Let's see what we came up with. So right off the bat rating is the heartbeat of your organization. Okay? I kind of like What? That says, Um, it's equal parts science, equal parts us aesthetic. Kate, there's a lot of information that's included in this page. And before I get any further, let me say this kind of brainstorming. This is not a time for me to dig deep. Okay? If I if I do that, I could lose an hour Just looking into this one thing. What I want to do is very quickly go through something, and I want to test it out to see if it has potential future Mary. If I think it does. I go up here, I copy it, and I put it right in here. Now, I like using Excel. Obviously, you can use anything that you want. You could handwrite it for all that matter, Kate. The goal is to get your ideas and your thoughts down here where you can access it later. Okay, So perfect. There's that one x out moves the next Brady night. Andy, let's see you believe a successful branding is the powerful, unique voice. Okay, Uh, it's not for me. Next. See how quickly I'm moving through. Hit here first K. Now, this one is an article brain into marketing. What came first? Differentiating each term. Okay, this is interesting. Wikipedia it is. So this looks like a very, very well fleshed out article, so I'm gonna copy this. Put it here to read later on, But I'm also going to come back in here, and I'm going to see Are there any other interesting terms that I could use for going through this whole process again? OK, so, marketing, that's interesting. I'm gonna put that here and then later I can come back, and I could do this whole thing again using the search term marketing. Let's see. We're looking quick. Scroll! Quick scroll! Who brand messaging? That's interesting. Okay, that might be a topic I want to dig into later as well. No, I copied it again. What am I doing wrong? Here we go. Shortcuts messing me up. Okay, Why does branding matter? That's interesting. I maybe want to do the whole article or a whole video just on that. Okay. So I can come here. I can put that here. Okay. You see how this works? Um, this is also and I'm live by. The sword is gonna make that smaller. That makes my heart a little happier. Okay, So it's been, what, 30 seconds I've looked through here. All right. I got what I needed for this initial kind of perusal, and I'm ready to move on, kickstart your business with the logo, make it real with a logo. No, thank you. Moving on. Okay. This one is gives me a little bit more toe work with. Let's see, a brand is a story that takes your audience on a journey that you're curating for them and their emotionally connected to Okay. I could work with that, OK, and again, like, let's say I choose to go back and pull from this to create a short article for myself. I'm not going to just rip off what they've done. First of all, that's copyright infringement. And second of all, OK, we could be more more creative than that. But I might take the idea of what they've done. This idea that a brand is a story that takes your audience on a journey. And maybe I write ah blawg article about how each individual company has a story to tell. And branding is a is a imagery driven way K to get that story across. So that's different than what they've said here that's unique to my own brain. Okay, but this was a starting point. I'm not coming up with that idea just off the top my head. I'm getting inspiration from this right here, and I'm finding a way to make it unique and make it my own. So that is just a quick example of how I would do it for branding. Now let's go through and do it one more time for, let's say, iPhone photography. All right, so make a little bit bigger. Okay? We'll type it in room right off the bat. I mean, just pages and pages and pages of stuff. Oh, and here's what I mean, everyone probably knows this, but just in case you didn't, if you scroll all the way down to the bottom of your Google search, they will give you ideas for searches that are related to what you looked for. So we have creative iPhone photography, iPhone photography, you know, take professional something K iPhone, photography awards, APS tricks. This is another great weight is to come down and get different search term ideas. So I like the creative iPhone photography, So I'm just gonna type that right in here. All right, now let's get to it. So first of all, we had to make sure that it's still set the past month perfect. And we can also go in here and we can filter it more so I could click this gator. I wanted to be verbatim for my search term. Or do I want it all results? We're going to go with all results. But if you wanted it to be completely verbatim, you could, of course, click that and Then away you go. I could filter just by videos. Okay, I could filter just by news. Alright. For example, this one right here. The main difference is you should care about. That might be a really fact based article that I could, you know, figure out more topics from All right, but let's go back to all and let's do what we did before. We're going to scroll how to shoot on iPhone. It's from apple dot com. Well, it's probably a really good resource straight from the manufacturer. Okay, iPhone photography school dot com. That's probably pretty good. We're gonna scroll down a little bit more 12 tips to improve your photos. OK, maybe I could pull straight from that or anything that looks like it will give you quick, relevant information. That is what we're searching for. So let's go to this one. I'm just gonna copy it and paste it over here, and then I'm gonna take a quick gander through here again. You don't want to spend more than 30 seconds to a minute browsing these. This part of the process is all about just doing a quick, high level kind of brainstorming and ideation. that, then you can come back and you can dig deeper into each of these individual topics. But you don't want to do that now, because again, if you do that now, you're going to spend hours and you're not gonna have much to show for on the research front. So I'm lucky, and I'm lucky. I don't see necessarily. And it's very, very detailed. So I'm don't think I'm gonna pull any topics out of this per se, at least off of a cursory glance. So let's move on. All right. Apples. We believe that everyone can take great photos. That is a really great topic. OK, everyone, anyone can take beautiful pictures. Alright. Some Exactly What they said. I adjusted a little bit, and that is a great article. Topic emits a great podcast topic. Okay. Apple is great because they give you aton of ideas in here. Okay, Look at that. Look at that. Look at that. And we saved the link so we can check it out later. IPhone photography school. Let's see what they say. You can take incredible iPhone photos. See, take the only camera you have in your pocket at all times. That's an interesting thing to look into later. Hey, you don't have the bulky gear. That's something that's interesting. Okay, we're scrolling. We're scrolling. One of the common misconceptions can't be for serious photography. Make sure that we also copy this links. We confined it later. Okay? Okay. I could hear a great things Landscape portrait, Children, street. Those could all be topics that we could fill in the last link we have here. Make sure that we copy it. Bring it over here. Let's see. Features, hacks, tricks, mobile photography. That's an interesting way to say it. Let's put that over there. Okay, Clean your lands. Tips, shutter control. Get closer instead of zooming. Used to grid for better composition. Okay, It's interesting. Interesting. Paid ngentle lighting. Okay. Very, very important. Focus. Exposure controls. Okay, so all of these, I mean, you could pull out all these for topics, of course, but I think we've got enough to move off of. So then we would it be done with that? Ok, so now what we're left with right here is a document that not only gives us ideas, but that also has thes links back to the original material on this is important because when you're writing articles or producing content, okay, if you're going to crease me, that is 100% unique to you. That's great. A lot of times, though, you may choose to quote something directly. And if you're pulling our are stating more than just two or three words that are the same to something else. You need to be able to give the person who originally wrote it or said it or produced it. Credit. Okay, that is how you avoid getting sued or anything else for copyright infringement. So the way that you would do that is, let's say that you're writing an article, and you are. You quote a line from someone else. You have the link already right here, and you could say original information found and then include the link. Or you can just hyper link it, you know directly. So it's a clickable link, and in that way you have given credit to the original creator, and you are setting yourself up for success, not for potential pitfalls where they come after you for stealing their intellectual property. At the end of the day, you can do this. I mean, you could have 30 different, well, 30 different rows here, 40 50 however many. And it took us what, just a few minutes to come up with Aton of great material for these two topics. So hopefully that this is encouraging to you and gives you an idea for how you can come up with topics you can come up with information supporting details for articles you won't want to write movies you want to create just by doing a simple, simple Google search. 9. 9 Content Publication Strategy Part 1: in this US, and we're gonna talk about content publications, strategies I am by no means an expert on one is the best time to post a social media, etcetera. So what I've done is I've pulled together some of the best practices and recommendations from industry leaders, and we're gonna walk through that and see what they recommend. Now again, you have to do what works for you. So if they're recommending that you post four times a day to instagram and you're like, that is literally not feasible for me and where I'm at in my business or in my personal life, don't worry about it. At the end of the day, something is better than nothing. If you're only posting once a day and that's the best that you can dio, it's okay. Consistency is what is key here. So set up a content publication plan that works for you. It's always way easier to scale up than to start off with a overly ambitious plan that you end up abandoning a few weeks in. So let's head over and let's see what the strategists have to say about how often you should be publishing and what types of content used to be putting out there. So let's talk about content posting strategies. By and large, the best time to post is obviously drumroll please, when your audience is online, unless it's a piece of more evergreen content. Like on your website. For example, Social Media posts have a very, very short shelf life. If you post something, say, at 10 in the morning in someone logs in at five in the morning. The chance of them seen what you posted, you know, eight hours earlier as showing up organically in part of their content. Feed is very, very, very low. So you wanna post consistently, and you also want to post at multiple times during the days that you're more likely to catch these people when they're actually online, scrolling through content. This is one of the reasons that earlier in this course, when you were prompted to fill out the audience analysis worksheet, there was a question on there about your ideal audiences kind of habits and and viewing schedule. And this is why because depending on that demographic, they're gonna be online statistically completely different times of the day. If you're looking to target moms, You're probably looking at more late night stuff, right? If you are mourning the target, you know, older generation, ca safe, age 50 and older, K probably early afternoon is your best bet. Statistically speaking, K, you have to do your research and you have to know when your target market is generally speaking online and make sure that you're at least putting a few things out during that time frame. So if you're just getting started and you don't have a lot of existing posts or data toe, look at that's okay, um, we've included rules of thumb that will get to here in a second. That kind of show on average, how many times you should be posting per day or per week. But if you do have a lot of data if you have a lot of existing instagram posts or if you have website data that you can look at hey, I highly encourage you to do that, go back through and see what posts received the most engagement. When did they receive that engagement? Okay, and figure out when your unique audience is most likely to check out your content and also what kind of condom that you put out that receives the most engagement from these people so that you can tailor what you're producing specifically to them. All right, so let's let's take a look at this. Experts recommend that at the bare minimum you post somewhere in this ballpark. So for your Facebook pages wanted to times per day for your Instagram pages 123 times per day for instagram stories, which are a little bit more of a very, very short shelf life, they only last for about 24 hours. Um, they say 2 to 5 times per day. Pinterest. This is a really broad range K 3 to 20 times per day, linked in 1 to 2 times per week. It could be a lot more, depending on the type of information that you're putting out there and whether or not you're re sharing what someone else has put out there. Because LinkedIn is very much a reciprocal platform, people value kind of that sharing of information and they look for that. Your website, your blawg. 1 to 2 times per week, YouTube 1 to 2 times per week, and then Twitter. This one's a little bit crazy experts recommend 10 to 30 times per day. Uh, part of that is because just the the shelf life of a post on Twitter is just so short. I read that it could be up to 14 minutes, and but before it kind of goes by the wayside and starts to degenerate less views. So that is a great starting point, and you again will need to consider the quote shelf life of each platform's post to decide the publishing frequency that is right for you. So make sure that you download this document because I've included several links. Sprout Social, for example, is an industry leading social media management platform. And they have an amazing article about how to schedule and kind of set up your social media calendar. I recommend checking it out. Hoot suite is another one, their social media scheduling tool. Because, um, I got to tell you, if you are putting out a lot of content across multiple platforms, you're gonna lose a lot of time every day going into each of those individual accounts and posting. You want to get something like hootsuite where you can spend a few hours every week uploading creating all this content and then letting it publish it on the schedule that you set so that it's kind of a set and forget situation. You're not ball and chain to your content publication schedule each and every day. I've included a few links from Hoot Suite one on creating a social media content calendar. It's much like the sprout social one, but again a little bit different. And then the other is kind of looks through the best times to post on Facebook Twitter instagram based on industry research that they've done for people that that post through through their platform, it's really, really interesting tons of data there to to sift through. So the last kind of piece of content here we're gonna talk about is from a company called Meltwater, their immediate intelligence and analytics company. And they say one of the most frequent questions we get asked is, How often should businesses post on social media? And the short answer is there is not a magic formula to social media success. So read that again. Okay, there is not a magic formula for social media success. Okay, there are as many right ways to go about it as you can possibly imagine no to businesses within any given industry are exactly alike. Okay, Everyone is unique. And it is that kind of unique special sauce that you bring to the way that you do business . What you put out into the world that sets you apart, not just in the messaging, but in how you deliver your content. And it has to work for you. So definitely look at all of these best practices. But then make it work for you. If posting 20 times a day to Twitter doesn't work for you, then post once a day. I mean, something is better than then. Nothing. Okay, it If it doesn't work for you than figure out what what does? Um, so let's go back to this. They say how often you should post depends on the platforms, your audience, or on their schedules. And the type of content you're posting. K. Everything I've been I've been teaching you up to this point. All right? Nothing new under the sun, for example, National Geographic posts around 5 to 7 times a day on instagram. They get on average this company research it, they get on average more than 225,000 likes per post at a 70.23% engagement rate. Versus Nike, who post a few times a month, gets an average of 315,000 likes proposed, with a 0.38% engagement rate. Okay, so both profiles have found huge success, but their strategies very, very different. Okay, 5 to 7 posts per day versus a few posts per month, both with incredible engagement rates and a ton of likes and involvement from their followers. So this, this just goes to show, and if you feel free to click here to read the full article, it's it's really interesting. It just goes to show there are so many right ways to do this. You guys, there's there's so many good ways to go about all of it. At the end of the day, the best thing that you could do for yourself is to go through this course to to go through all of the supporting documents to create your content calendar, to create your big picture themes, create your big picture pieces of content and then find ways to make your job easier by pulling quotes from what you write by pulling audio snippets from the videos that you make and finding ways to put those out on social media to further your message without making a ton more work for yourselves along the way.