It’s not armchair content creators that get off track sometimes, even the pros do. Marketing communications professional and blogger at Grow, Mark Schaefer, admits he screwed up his blogging strategy. Already! And we aren’t too far into the new year.
Like any pro, however, he knows how to recover fast, get back on track before the rails cool and keep chugging. He writes, “During my dry spell, I realized that I had swerved away from my system. For some reason, I was either too busy, too lazy, or both and ignored my discipline of recording ideas.”
In not so many words, Schaefer tells us that keeping our content ideas rolling and producing blog posts from our reserve, we must be intentional — intentional about our environment, intentional about media we consume, intentional about ideas that spring up in our mind, through conversations, and intentional about capturing as well as recording them for the future.
I use several tools to keep my ideas in pseudo order. While you may choose different tools, the idea is to use a set of organizational tools that do several things:
- An easy way to catalog ideas quickly.
- An easy way to organize your ideas.
- An easy way to set those ideas into motion.
That’s what the remainder of this posit is about — the tools to help you quickly and easily catalog and organize, as well as tools to help you put those ideas into motion.
Three Tools to Capture Your Thoughts
I don’t know if this statistic is true or not, but it’s good for illustration. Studies show our attention span is less than a goldfish. So, if we don’t capture ideas quickly, very quickly, we are liable to lose them. When I was a reporter, my favorite tool to capture story ideas was the Moleskine. While that’s still a good standby, here are others:
- Google Docs
Productivity Tools that Keep You Writing
One of my new found productivity tools is Action Method by the folks of 99u. I included them in my recent post on blogs and communities you should be following. I’ve also employed the Action Method methodology to my life with astounding results, which I’ll share in a later post. The idea, however, and I believe the secret to productivity is realizing and accepting our predisposition to passivity. Once we realize, accept, then reject passivity and live by a method that drives us toward action, we get things done. This is true for writing blog posts, engaging in more meaningful projects at work — it even means keeping one’s life in order. It bring a sense of fulfillment, which boosts self-esteem and worth.
Tools to Set Your Ideas in Motion
Since this post is about keeping your content organized and churning it out for the good of the people you serve, I want to share with you a free resource. But first let me explain what I’m about to give you. An editorial calendar is a tool that helps you keep content organized and get to publishing deadlines. In other words, it takes the ideas you have and imposes on them form and function.
This editorial calendar will help keep your ideas, keywords and other important information organized. It will help you set deadlines, but it will be your responsibility to meet those deadlines.
For your free editorial calendar, click here.