How to write a blog post FAST! AKA what I learned about creating content from Food Network.
So you want to know how to write a blog post even faster, right?
Hey, business blogger friend! Woohoo, you're so excited to write your next blog post, aren't you?
I mean, blogging is GREAT - it can boost your SEO, it helps build authority with the potential clients who come to your site, and it's a fun way to get your opinions and insights out into the world.
It can also be a total pain in the butt.
If you're not careful, between the research, the writing, the editing, and - if you're a DIY-er like me - creating the graphics, making a single blog post can take a whole day!
Here's what I do (and the method I teach my students in The Academy) to write entertaining, informative, and effective blog posts FAST.
I think about the Food Network.
OK, OK, I don't sit there and think about the Food Network every time I go to create a piece of content, but I DO use some tips I learned from all of their shows.
Check it out -
ONE - Mise En Place like a boss.
On just about every cooking show, you'll see bowls full of prepped ingredients - that's mise en place. This means everything in its place. Chefs use it to make sure all their stuff is ready to go so they don't waste time stopping to chop an onion when they're in the middle of making their dish.
You can use the same idea. If you've got a few pieces of research, pull up all the articles at the same time and LEAVE them up. Read them quickly and leave them open so you can jump back to them if you need a quote or an idea.
If you've got items you want to link to, collect them all in a secret Pinterest board so you don't have to go hunting for them later.
TWO - Get a recipe.
When you're improvising in the kitchen, things can either turn out GREAT or they can be a disgusting mess. Chopped is a perfect example of this - "Here's a plantain, grape Nerds, a fifth of vodka, some corn meal, and edible confetti - make them into a dessert." Wait, what?
If you want to write your blog posts FAST, you need a framework (aka a recipe) to take all of your random thoughts and turn them into a cohesive, convincing piece of writing. Tell yourself you're going to share the five most important things about your topic, then write those five things down. Boom. Those are your body paragraphs. Add an intro paragraph and a closing paragraph with call to action and you're halfway done. There are just a few more steps...
THREE - Use tools to speed up the process.
OK, if you've ever watched Iron Chef, you know about the blast chiller. You want to make lobster bisque into ice cream in thirty minutes? Then you're going to need to cool things down ASAP. That's where the blast chiller comes in. And guess what? None of the chefs are embarrassed to use this particular tool - it's just a thing that helps them get their work done quickly.
This is where Canva.com comes in - if you need a great graphic (and you DO need a great graphic, trust me) and you aren't super quick with InDesign or you don't want to wait for a graphic designer, Canva's got your back. Once you've got the key points of your post lined out, jump over to Canva, get a cute template, change out the photo, pop the information in, and Ta-freakin'-Da, you've got a beautiful, Pin-worthy graphic like the one above done in 10 minutes flat. And it's either FREE or very cheap (the Canva for Work upgrade is totally worth it).
Some people talk smack about Canva, but not me. You know why? Even if it's not totally custom, DONE BEATS PERFECT every single time.
FOUR - Fill in the details.
Before the chefs give their dishes to their guests (if we're talking Ina Garten) or their judges (if we're talking Beat Bobby Flay), they make sure all the food is plated properly and add the finishing touches. They add sprig of herbs there or a spoonful of remoulade there to take the dish to the next level - they DON'T, however, go and throw a turkey leg on top.
You're going to do the same. Now that your graphic is done, return to your post. You've got your intro and outro done, so now it's time to fill in that body. Remember the five important things on your topic? Go to each one and write 2 to 3 sentences supporting each idea. That's it. Make sure they're entertaining or informative sentences, but that's ALL. We're not trying to write War and Peace here, we're blogging. If you want to go back and throw in a witty anecdote or two, even better, but then STOP - you're almost done and you don't need to keep adding.
FIVE - Edit ruthlessly but quickly.
Food Network chefs - heck, chefs the world over, really - never let food go out without one crucial step. They whip out their tasting spoon and test the dish. You can't send your stuff into the world without checking it, either.
A lot of people get tempted to just hit Publish because they want to be done with the whole thing, but you're better than that - when you're writing for your business, you need it to be polished and presentable, so you MUST edit.
Read it out loud once, then go get a drink. Walk around. Come back five minutes later and read it out loud again. Bits that don't make sense? Cut 'em. Stories that seem kind of rough and off topic? Delete. While writing this post, I started to add a story about Cutthroat Kitchen, but it kind of wandered and didn't support the idea, so I got rid of it. Don't be emotional about this part - editing makes your post stronger.
SIX - Share shamelessly.
When the TV chefs are finally setting their dishes in front of the world, do they ever say, "Here's the soup I made." HELL NO - they say, "Today, I've prepared for you a locally sourced vegan Peanut and Pumpkin Goulash topped with Chilled Mushroom Gastrique and Bell Pepper Confit. Enjoy"
(That's not a real dish - I just made it up.)
They are proud to put their work out there, and you should be, too. That means you've got to SHARE, baby - share shamelessly. Share it on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, in your emails (HELLO), mention it on your Facebook Live, read it on YouTube - whatever it takes. You've got great ideas to put out into the world, but no one can appreciate them if you don't share them.
That's The End!
Now that you've learned the secrets to writing your next blog post FAST, you're ready to get consistent. Blogging regularly helps boost that SEO sky high - and who doesn't like that?
Thanks for checking out this post - if you enjoyed it, would you please do me a favor and share it on Pinterest? I appreciate it!
Here's to building an Uncommonly Good Biz!
PS - If you're a service based creative entrepreneur, and you're into this new way of writing entertaining, informative, and effective (as in, they help you SELL MORE) FAST, come check out The Academy. We meet once a week to focus on this very thing - helping you write blog posts that get your business the attention and love you deserve. Oh, and if you like the idea of writing but don't love editing, you can get professional editing included, too.
You also get free training on other forms of business communications - everything from tips on better emails to best practices for Facebook Live - in our monthly trainings, AND we have a good time while working together, too.
Interested? Join the fun here - THE ACADEMY