How To Blog To Establish Authority So People Listen To You
When you’re first starting out in online business, it can be hard to think that people listen to you. I mean, other than your mom, right? Checking vanity metrics like email subs, Facebook likes, and pageviews are seriously tempting.
You can *literally* say, “Judy Smith LIKES me” when you see that Facebook notification.
And, believe me, I’ve been there.
But, I’ve learned a lot in the few years I’ve been rattling around this online business world. And, I will tell you what, the more you focus on creating STELLAR content, the more people are going to listen to you … for REALS.
But, how do you create THAT kind of content?
Because, when you’re building an online business, it’s really easy to be overwhelmed by all of the competition.
And, that kind of mindset can lead to fear and self-doubt.
I know that I started my business way later than I really could have. Because I was suffering from a major case of imposter syndrome. Like, “why would anyone hire me when there are SO MANY other options!?”
It was kind of ridiculous.
And, if you’re thinking anything remotely close to what I was thinking, then you’re also being ridiculous
Tough love, my friend.
Because, what are we really talking about here!?
We’re talking about you standing in your own way.
You’re *literally* blocking yourself from making that shift from doing something that leaves you unfulfilled … to doing something that fills you up!
Now, if you’re like me, having a system or process to follow makes a HUGE difference when it comes to confidence.
In other words, if I know which steps I need to follow, I can just focus on those step-by-steps and that helps keep the chatter out of my brain.
When I created a step-by-step system to write my blog posts – it made all the difference in the world for my business.
Instead of staring at a blank page with that beatch in my head telling me how much of a waste of time this whole “starting a business” thing was … I would just focus on step one … and then step two … etc.
Until I had a whole blog post written – that I felt really good about, because it was written thoughtfully and with a clear mind – ready to publish and share with the world. Or, at least with my mom and sisters who were my only traffic at the time hahaha!
So, what is the magic that happens when you write your blog posts with a clear plan of action?
Your message is STRONG.
You sound CONFIDENT & SMART.
PEOPLE LISTEN TO YOU AND TRUST YOU.
When you sit down to write a blog post (or the script for a video you’re going to film) and you have a clear idea of where you’re going to take that post or video, it’s easy to make an impact on your readers.
Your content should be designed to always educate, inspire or support your audience. You should aspire to be their go-to person for all things in your niche.
You want to write with authority. And, you want your audience to trust that the advice, tips, tricks, lessons etc that they are receiving from you are accurate and will actually help if they put them into practice.
The clear plan of action for writing blog posts so people listen to you
How *exactly* do you sit down in front of the computer to write a blog post that sounds confident?
What are the exact steps that need to be taken?
I’m so glad you asked 🙂
Change how you think about the process – be positive about yourself
Before you do anything in your business – you need to check your mindset. And, I mean really listen to the story that you’re telling yourself in your head.
And then … dare to think that you have control over that story and that you could tell yourself a different one. A better one. One that gives you confidence and a clear direction.
If that voice in your head is telling you that no one wants to read or hear your content – you’re not going to create your best stuff.
In fact, you might not even create at all. And, your business will always only exist as a dream.
If you do end up creating content with a negative mindset, your audience will feel the lack of sincerity. They will know that you don’t totally believe in your own message and they will stop engaging.
Think of it this way – if that voice in your head were an actual person sitting on the couch next to you – what would you do?
Would you let her talk to you like that?
Or, would you kick her ass out of your house?
If you’ve got a voice in your head telling you all of the reasons that you shouldn’t be trying to start your own business – kick her ass out.
Carol Dweck is a psychologist and one of the leading researchers in the field of motivation. In this TED Talk, she tells us about developing a growth mindset and the power of believing that you can improve.
Create an editorial calendar
Brian Tracy said, “The hardest part of any project is getting started.”
When the project is something like creating content, getting started can feel like you’re being asked to lift a tank. Impossible!
There is nothing more defeating that staring at a blank Google doc with no idea where to start.
Well, what if you didn’t start at actually creating the content?
What if your starting point was just creating the topics for each?
Building out an editorial calendar actually provides you with a path to follow. There aren’t any questions – it’s all mapped out.
I like to plan my content in quarters and I create 13 topics at a time.
First, I keep in mind my categories and sub-topics. I have three categories that I create content around for my audience; online business, productivity, and mindset.
I have identified sub-topics under each of those umbrella categories that allow me to drill down and connect with my audience on a deeper level around those categories.
For instance, under online business, I have identified subtopics like niche & audience, content, list building, and video.
I decide what my business drivers are for that quarter and I build my content around those drivers. Business drivers are the things in my business that make money.
My number one is always list-building so, I make sure that I optimize ALL of my content to include list-building opportunities. Then, if I’m participating in a launch that quarter or, an affiliate sale – I will create content that relates to those sales.
In February, I participate in an affiliate sale for the best online course to learn how to blog. So, my content from now until then will be about blogging.
Not only does blogging fit under my sub-topics of content but, it also aligns with two of my business drivers for the quarter.
From there, I create an Asana project for that quarter, pretend that I am my target audience and think about what they need to hear from me about blogging and content that would inspire, educate or support them.
I choose 13 topics and create one post and one video per week.
Reverse engineer your post from finish to start
Um, say whaaa?
Yeah. You read that right.
Once you have identified the topics for each, it’s time to start constructing the actual posts. And, that is easily done by working from end to beginning.
When you think about the topic of the post – identify what you want your audience to take away. In other words, what kind of action do you want them to be able to take after reading your post or watching your video?
For instance, when I identified this topic of “blogging to establish authority” I could have taken it in a lot of different directions.
I could have given you a list of reasons why online authority will make you more money or, I could have taught you about the different elements of a blog post that are needed to establish authority.
But, when I really stood in your shoes and thought about what I wanted you to take away from this topic, it was clear that I wanted you to have a system to follow that would ease your anxiety about creating content.
So, I listed out the steps of that system and then I had a clear idea of what to talk about.
And, since SEO is one of my business drivers, I then listed out the H1 and H2 headers for my post based on what I wanted you to take away from it.
Suddenly, I had a Google doc that had a title, two H1 headings, and four H2 headings. More or less, I had an outline of my post.
After I did that for all 13 posts, I had a clear path to follow for the next three months of content!! Simple.
Chances are, you’re sitting down to write or create a video during a very finite window.
Not many online business owners who are just starting out have huge chunks of time to create their content uninterrupted.
So, you want to make sure that you have a plan to manage distractions. This will help you stay focused and productive.
My two most favorite tools for managing distractions are; a timer and a set of earbuds.
I know. It sounds completely weird and abstract.
Let me explain.
When I settle in to create content, I pretend that you and I are sitting across from each other at a coffee shop having a real-life conversation.
So, it’s important for me to role-play that scenario in my head and really stick with it.
I can’t really do that if I’m constantly being distracted by whatever is going on in my home or wherever I am when I’m creating the content.
I like to use earbuds to listen to classical music and drown out the background noise. It really helps to take me to another place and I can actually visualize you sitting across from me and we are just talking.
I’m able to completely drop down into my work and put my heart into what I’m creating. I truly am motivated to educate, support and inspire you. So, when I’m not being distracted by all of the things, I can actually connect.
Now, the timer. What is that all about?
Okay. I am a mother of three. It used to be that I homeschooled all of my children and worked from home. Nowadays, my two older kiddos are in school (they are 12 and 5) and I’m home with the 3-year old.
I’ll tell you what though – no matter how many children are home with me, it feels like I am constantly being interrupted.
Whether it’s one child or three – an interruption is an interruption.
So, I use a timer to make sure that I am working in spurts. I set the timer and work for a 20 or 30-minute block.
Then, I get up and get a cup of water, check to see if my kiddo needs a snack, check my Slack to see if there are any tasks from clients that I need to take care of, etc.
Having those H1 and H2 titles makes this SO MUCH easier.
Basically, a 30-minute spurt is one or two sections of the post. And, since I open the document to see the outline already there and done for me, I know exactly what I’m supposed to write or film about during those 30-minutes.
Do one thing at a time
Once you have done to work to kick that cranky lady out of your head – you need to make sure she stays gone.
In other words, you need to avoid allowing any negative thoughts to creep into your head. For that reason, I always make sure that I don’t edit while I’m writing or filming.
My first pass at creating a piece of content is more like creating a journal entry. I just let the words flow out and don’t even really think about it.
Don’t erase anything or start over. I just keep going and get it all out of my head.
Then, if I have time, I will use a 30-minute block to edit and rework some things. Or, I will come back to the project on a completely different day and edit.
But, I never allow my mind to second guess what I’m creating while I’m creating it. I always just purge all of my thoughts and feelings on the subject and then go back later to tidy things up.
And, since I’m very clear about my audience and how I help them, I rarely have to spend much time tidying because I *usually* really love what I’ve created.
And, I hope you do too!!