Get Organized to Make the Most of Your Time and Find Time to Create Content
After work, I would have the best intentions to create content. After I made dinner, and put my son to bed I would sit at my laptop and not know where to start. I didn’t know if I should work on a blog post, edit a video, or add pictures to an existing post. Even if I knew I wanted to work on a blog post the thought of sitting down to write a 2500-3500-word blog post seemed overwhelming. Recording a video also seemed like a tall task if I wasn’t dressed appropriately or if the video required an elaborate setup.
I knew I needed to get more organized to make the most of my free time. I started planning my week ahead and getting more organized about creating content. I realized that if I knew I wanted to record a video on Wednesday after work, I might order takeout for dinner so I had more time to setup for the video.
1 Create a Content Plan
This can span any timeframe you choose. It can be a monthly content plan, a quarterly content plan or a yearly content plan. The plan can have all three. The most basic content plan identifies what type of content (blog posts, social media posts, or YouTube) you want to create.
I have a goal of creating 30 blog posts and 10 YouTube videos per quarter. There are three months in a quarter. In order to meet that goal, I would need to create 3-4 YouTube videos per month. I would need to create 10 blog posts per month to meet that mark.
If I wanted to create a weekly content plan, I would have a goal to record 1 YouTube video per week and to create 3-4 blog posts per week.
Having this plan helps me to stay motivated and focused on creating content. It also helps me to balance my busy weeks. Recently I had a wedding on a Thursday night, a Birthday Party and BBQ on Saturday, and a Baby Shower on Sunday. I like to use my weekends to create content, when they are busy, I don’t always stick to my content plan. Knowing I had these events coming up, I created more content then planned during the prior week.
2 Plan the Week Ahead
Planning your week in advance allows you to find opportunities to create content. Some weeks are busier than others. I work a full-time job, have a toddler, and help care for my grandmother. So, some weeks it seems almost impossible to schedule content creation. If creating content is just a hobby skipping a week or two here or there is not a big deal. If the content you are creating is part of a bigger business plan, you need to learn how to get SOME content done during those busy weeks, even if it less than you get done in a typical week.
During the summertime my social calendar is packed on the weekends. I can easily go two or three weekends in a row without having ANY time to come weeks, I am able to write 5 blog posts, record 5 new YouTube videos, and edit 2 previously recorded YouTube videos. Some weeks I barely have enough time to get one blog post done. To learn more about the benefits of planning your week ahead, read this ARTICLE that we previously published.
3 Brainstorm Content Ideas to make the most of Content Creating time
Make time to brainstorm content ideas. I used to sit down in front of a laptop after work and have no clue what I would write about. After a long day at work, I did not always have the mental energy to come up with ideas after work. That time would often end up wasted. Having a pre-planned list of ideas helps me to make the most of the time I have ava
4 Create Outlines to make the most of Content Creating time
Outlines are helpful tools for creating videos and written content. Honestly in my academic life, I used to not value outlines. Now I use them ALL THE TIME. I create content outlines on the weekend, so that when I sit down to work during the week, the content just flows more smoothly.
5 Identify Short Tasks to make the most of Content Creating time
The goal is to make the best use of your time, and even a 15 minute or 30-minute break can be used to help you reach your content goals.
Creating content doesn’t have to be an all or nothing approach. When I started creating content I would attempt to research, outline, draft, come up with a Headline, edit, add pictures, add links, and publish all in one session. I often felt burnt out and sometimes wouldn’t start because I did not have enough time to complete a blog post from start to finish.
In order to maximize your time, create a list of short tasks. I consider a short task to be 30 minutes or less. Create a list of tasks that you can get done in 30 minutes or less. In terms of content, this can be coming up with Headlines for blog posts or videos. It could be a brainstorming session. It could be creating a thumbnail for a YouTube video.
6 Identify Medium Tasks to make the most of Content Creating Time
Medium tasks, are tasks that can be accomplished in about an hour. I consider creating outlines and preliminary research for content medium tasks. Recording one or two simple videos could also be considered a medium task.
7 Identify Long Tasks to make the most of Content Creating Time
These tasks take anywhere from 1 to 3 hours. If I am lucky enough to have a 2-3-hour block of time, I like to fill it with a batch of the same type of tasks. Recording a bunch of videos, or adding images to several blog posts, editing several blog posts, or creating an epic blog post.
In my life, a 2-3-hour block of time is rare, If I know I have one coming up I create a punch list of tasks to accomplish in that time frame. It’s easy to waste a block of time if you don’t have a plan of attack. This is why it is helpful to plan the week ahead and to have a general content creation strategy.
Create Content Anywhere and Anytime
8 Go Mobile to Create content Anywhere
Content Creation can be done while you are on the go.
A mobile phone is a powerful tool that you can use to create content anywhere! I use my cell phone to record most of my YouTube videos. You can use it to snap pictures while you are on the go. If you are creating content for a blog
9 Go Analog to Create Content Anywhere
Carry around a notebook to jot down content ideas and create to-do lists as you are out and about. You could technically do this on your phone, but I get easily distracted by text messages and social media alerts on my phone. I would take out my phone to type in an idea, and after catching up on 30 minutes of group text…. I forgot the idea I intended to type in to the notes app on my phone!
I found it more productive to write down ideas in a notebook, so that I was not distracted by e-mail, text messages, social media and all of the other
10 Use a Working Lunch to Create Content Anytime
If you are working or studying full time, Lunch Breaks can be a great opportunity to create content. However, I strongly advise against using any work laptops for content creations. If you don’t have access to your personal laptop use your phone, or a notebook to create content during your Lunch Break
If you are creating content for YouTube, you may be able to create a VLOG during your lunch break. If you are creating blog posts, you can use this time to finish up a post, or brainstorm ideas for future post. Find somewhere quiet during your lunch break and use that time to work on creating content.
11 Create Perfectly Imperfect Content to Make more Time for Creating Content
Throw perfection out of the window! People searching google or watching YouTube don’t want perfect content, they want authentic and helpful content. Be AUTHENTIC and be HELPFUL and your audience will find you.
You should put some thought into your content, but it does not have to be perfect. Aiming for perfection can slow down your content creation process, with little added value. Spend time up front outlining content to make sure it is organized and flows well. Give your content a quick review before you publish it, but then move on and continue to create more content.
12 Batch Record Videos to make the most out of Content Creating Time
Batch Recording videos, can help you save time and reach your content creating goals. It is a Sunday Afternoon; I have NOTHING on the social calendar. Hubby has taken our son on a grocery shopping adventure. I will use this time to create videos. This is the perfect opportunity to set up and get to work on some of the ideas I came up with in my content strategy, or added to my plan for the week ahead.
13 Use Early Mornings to find more time to Create Content
If you are a morning person, waking up a little earlier to work on content is a good idea. I am a morning person. My mind is clearer early in the morning than it is later in the evening. If given the choice I would rather wake up 1hr earlier in the morning than stay up 1hr later in the evening.
Remember creating content is not an all or nothing approach. Waking up even 30 minutes early is an opportunity to work on short tasks that help you reach your content goal. Create a YouTube thumbnail, or a featured blog post image. Brainstorm. Quick edit a blog post. Set up video equipment to record a video later in the day. These are small steps, but they will help you move toward your content creation goals.
- Late Nights
Night Owls, can benefit from blocking out an hour or two to work on content after they would normally go down for the night. I tried this, and this is simply not the approach for me. I am exhausted by the end of the day, so I tend to be on the early morning side of this spectrum.
- Days Off
If you work full time days off are a great opportunity to create content. You have more free time than you do on a typical working day. I get the most from my days off by scheduling two 2-hr blocks to work on content. For a total of four focused hours. I have tried doing a straight 8 hour work day, but my attention often ended up divided between creating content while consuming content on YouTube.
- Creative Commute
This is an option for those who commute by bus or train. While you are commuting take out a notebook and pen and start working on content ideas. Or maybe on your journey to work, capture a few pictures or video clips that can be used in future content.
- Utilize Voice to Text
Working on articles or blog posts can seem like a chore, if you do not enjoy typing or writing. Most smart phones have a voice to text option built in, this allows you to dictate a blog post and have your phone convert it to a written document. This is great for content creators who need to generate written content but who prefer verbal communication to written communication.
Make More Time to Create Content
- Order Take Out
Preparing dinner and cleaning up afterwards can easily take more than an hour. Ordering take out frees up more time to create content. If I am having a very busy week, I choose to order take out once or twice during the week to stay on track with my content creating goals.
- Play Dates and Sitters
As a mom, finding time to create content is a delicate balance. I enjoy spending time with my son. If I am not working, I have my son and this makes it tricky to carve out time to create content. I worked out a schedule with my husband, on the weekend he takes my son out for a few hours, so that I can have undisturbed, wide awake time to work on content.
- Arrive Early
I actually got this idea from a site called Income School. I am currently a student of their project 24 course. Jim, one of the founders of Income School mentioned that when he started his first blog. He would arrive early to work and find a quiet spot to work on content.
If you have the opportunity to get to work or school early to work on content, you should. Right now, due to my son’s daycare schedule this is not an option for me.
- Stay Late
Similar to arriving early, stay at work or school a little later and knock out a few pieces of content.
- Take Pictures or Record Video
Mobile devices provide the opportunity to take pictures or video ANYWHERE! There may be a week where opportunities to sit in front of your laptop to create content are few and far between. However, if you are out and about, you can use this opportunity to capture images while you are out and about living life.
If you have a blog about home décor, and you are not able to create content because you are busy staging homes, or shopping for interior design contents. Use this opportunity to take pictures of your work that can then be incorporated in to your posts.
This is true for hobby type blogs as well. If you create content for a website or YouTube channel about extreme sports. And you are out on a weeklong snowboarding expedition, be sure to capture videos and photos while you are there.
As an added bonus, there is a slight SEO advantage to using unique content vs. using stock mages.
- Routine Rhythm
Getting in to a Rhythm can really help motivate you to keep creating content. So, you launched your YouTube channel with about 5 videos and they performed well. People are engaging and coming back to watch more. Don’t lose the momentum! Keep creating content and publish it on a regular schedule to keep your channel growing.
If there are parts of the content creation process that you loathe. Consider hiring someone to preform those tasks. If you are creating content as part of an online business strategy, delegating some portions of content creation may be required to help your business grow. Hire someone on Fiverr or Upwork to take care of the tasks that aren’t your strong suit.
- Track Your Progress
Take a moment to review how many pieces of content have you actually published, this week, this month, this quarter, this year. Taking a moment to see how reaching these smaller content creation goals help you to reach big picture goals can be inspirational. It shows that all your hard work is paying off.
- Multitask (only when necessary)
In general, I am more productive when I am laser focused on one task. Sometimes I sit my son in front of the T.V for 30 minutes while I make some tweaks to my website.
- Netflix and Chill…after You Create Content
If you are working or studying full time and entering the content creation business. It is probably a good idea to create more content than you consume. Right now, I only have one show that I am interested in. It comes on once a week for an hour. Unless I am absolutely smashing content creation and I am way ahead of where I planned to be, I have no interest in binge worthy content…I’d rather work on my business and create content.
- Airplane Mode
Disconnecting in this always connected world can help you meet your content creation goals. Smart phone can be an amazing tool in generating content, It can also be a huge distraction. To get the most out of the windows you have to create content, turn your phone on airplane mode.
- Set Content Performance Goals
These are goals for how you want your content to perform. How many page or video view per month? Having performance goals for you content, helps you stay motivated and on track
- Evaluate Content Performance
Periodically review your content to see how it is performing. This can help feed back in to your content creations strategy. Spend more time creating the content that is working out the best, find ways to improve the content that is underperforming.
How do I Create a Content Strategy?
At the most basic level, a content strategy should identify your audience, state the goals of your content, and allocate the resources necessary to get it done.
How do you create better content?
To create better content, make content that is helpful valid, and authentic. Creating content that is helpful and valid will find its way to the intended audience.