A lot of people have asked me how I’ve been able to fit the writing of a weekly blog, a monthly newsletter and three books into my schedule over the past few years and I have to say there really isn’t a magic formula. The circumstances of my life have meant that I’ve had to become highly organized as a business person and as a mom, and even though I have a lot of strategies for being highly efficient, I usually get to the end of my day with an awful lot of items still left on my To Do list.
But when it comes to marketing my business, I have become highly focused on making sure that piece gets handled. I’ve seen, first-hand, how strategic content marketing efforts, and writing books, have supported my business.
And here’s how I do it:
First of all, you need to write down your goals.
You’ve probably heard this before and I can’t emphasize it enough. At the start of every week I make a list of what I need to get done over the next five-to-seven days and I keep that list where I can see it so I don’t get too far off task. Surprises are inevitable and I am far more optimistic about what the hours can hold than I should be. But at least if I have a written record of what I want to accomplish, I have a much greater chance of getting these things done than if I don’t. And I am motivated! As I mentioned, blogging and book writing are helping to generate revenue for me and I need to keep at it in order to ensure that the results continue.
Next, I suggest you make a great Writing Plan.
I know, I know – if you want to make God laugh, make a plan. And surprises are usually, ultimately, good for us. So if you can make a plan and hold it loosely, you are better off than if you don’t have a plan for how you’re going to create the content you need. A writing plan is a great time-saver because knowing exactly what you want to put in your blog or in your book saves precious minutes at the keyboard.
A writing plan should include why your topic is important, the topics that your blog (or book) will cover, when you are going to create the content (Sunday from 2:00 to 4:00? By 4:00 every Monday afternoon?) and the implications for your business of getting this done.
My third technique for saving writing time through good planning is to set up a writing routine that works for me.
You probably feel more creative at some times of the week or the day than others. You want to schedule your writing time for that magical time, as much as possible, at any rate. And protect that time with might and main!
A lot of writing experts say that you have to write for a specific amount of time every day and while I love that idea, it is virtually impossible to do that if you are a busy person with a lot of interests and, let’s face it, an actual life outside of the work you do in the world.
But what I like about that idea is the concept of commitment and I can almost guarantee that you won’t meet your goals if you don’t dedicate at least a corner of your working life to writing. There are no short cuts, unless you want to create an audio or video blog. Be as consistent as you can!
If you’d like to know more about how I might be able to help you become a more effective writer, please get in touch!