There’s a lot of rubbish talked about the problems of duplicate content and whether Google penalizes for it. The real concern is that most article directories, or other sources of backlinks (such as hubpages, squidoo etc), demand that you produce original content, so when you think about all the different pieces you have to produce, the list looks endless. But is that the actual problem?
When you get right down to it, what’s the most difficult thing to do, find an idea to write about, or actually do the writing? Now I know a lot of people will say ‘both’ but sit and think a minute. Isn’t it really finding something to write about that is the biggest challenge?
But that’s not a problem for you, because you have a future features calendar and you have a number of topics all mapped out. If not, you know what you have to do! Once you have those topics you can work in many different ways. Here’s just one.
Let’s say your topic is something you don’t know too much about right now. All you have a is a short piece of advice. For a hypothetical example lets say you have a shop selling silk flowers. You want to write about those flowers to promote your shop, so you sit down and come up with some topics. One is that it’s a good idea to choose flowers to suit your personality, or if you’re giving them as a gift, to suit the personality of the person you are giving them to.
There’s not much in that is contentious, it’s just another way of saying ‘Choose flowers you like’, so what could you do with something like that?
First of all you could simply enlarge on the point. Write a paragraph about it, just 250 words, and you have a (short) ezine article. Now you’ve started to write, you’ll find you actually do have a view. There are some flowers you don’t like much and others you don’t think would look very good in your room. Think about that a while. Is there a way you can predict what sort of flowers someone likes? Does it have something to do with their personality? Take a look at some other websites and see how they categorise the flowers. You’ll see bowls of bright daisies which look like fun. You’ll see expensive tropical flowers which are very bright, colorful and dramatic. You’ll see bouquets of white flowers which looks fabulous in any setting and of course red roses for the romantics. And that’s just at first glance.
A pattern begins to emerge, so you can reuse the idea to write something a little longer for a squidoo lens where you can talk about different flower personalities and add pictures of some of the items you sell.
But writing isn’t just about articles. Using the same idea you can write an introduction and create a quiz using hubpages where readers can answer questions to find out what their ‘flower personality’ is. End by recommending a flower or set of flowers for each personality type.
So far, one idea has generated one article, one lens and one hub. But we’re not done yet. You’ve got a lot more material now and it’s time to write up something for your blog. Here you can reuse the words if you like, simply take the blog article and pop it in your newsletter (or have software like aweber or mad mimi do it for you.) You developed a quiz, so turn the questions into a survey and add this to your newsletter. Your readers will love something interactive and their answers will give you useful information. Once again, there’s more.
Takes the results of your survey and publish it. It’s news, so now you have a press release. You could even write it up as for ezinearticles.com
Remember how this started? With a simple 250 word article. Well now you’ve had a chance to explore the topic, you even know how your customers feel about it. Now it’s time to write your list article. How many flower personalities did you find? There must be at least five, probably more. Then you have at least ‘Silk Flowers: Five ways to find the perfect arrangement’ You might even be able to enlarge it to ten, ‘Silk Flowers and You, Ten Questions to Help You Find Your Flower Personality’ Once you’ve written that article (around 600 words) take each point separately and turn it into one shorter article, for example ‘Silk Flowers: Choosing Flowers with Drama’ or Silk Flowers: Classic flowers for Classic Rooms’.
List articles make great power point presentations, so create your power point slides and add pictures of your products. Then turn the powerpoint into a video and add it to youtube. If you’re happy to appear on camera you can record yourself talking to the camera. Why make one video when you could make two, or even more?
Now you’ve had lots of time to think and write about the subject, it’s time to write THE blog post, the one blogs all over the net will want to refer to. One thousand, fifteen hundred words or even more. But that’s not a problem because by now you’re an expert in the subject and you’ve got a lot to say. Remember this is a blog post, it should have personality. If some of the answers to your survey have you mystified, if you don’t understand why some people like A while others like B, then say so. The comments which result may provide an education!
So a few days down the line we have 6-12 ezinearticles, one press release, one hub, one newsletter, one lens, at least one youtube video and two blog posts, one of which is a major work. Store them all away, because in a couple of months you can reuse them. Not, not on your blog; if you choose your topics carefully you can build your content into an e-book or other info product, and since you’ve already created a survey and a quiz, you’ve had feedback from your customers which will help you hone that product and make it something they want, whether you intend to sell it for profit or make it a give away incentive to join your email list.
Content isn’t the problem, getting ideas for content is the problem. The rest is just time and words.