Please welcome guest contributor Susan B. Weiner, CFA, to the blog today! Susan's sharing her ideas and tips for boosting your blogging productivity as a financial advisor. Enjoy!
Would you like to increase your financial blogging productivity? Stop doing this one thing and you'll produce more blog posts with less effort and more fun.
Here's my advice:
Stop blogging about topics that don't interest you.
Forcing yourself to blog about boring topics doesn't serve your business or personal interests. It will hurt your blogging productivity and yield content that fails to excite readers. You’ll lose the referrals typically generated by a passionate, informed blogger who writes reasonably well.
Blogging Productivity Comes from Passion, Not "Should"
The best blog posts emerge from the meeting of the writer's passion and the reader's interests. They attract readers with the writer's enthusiasm. I'm not the only person who thinks this.
See, for example, this article on what the best bloggers have in common. It says of successful bloggers, "...there is one thing you will find common in pretty much all of them – a raw passion for what they do."
In contrast, if you don't feel strongly about your topic, that's likely to be reflected in your approach to the topic in the following ways:
- You'll put off starting your post.
- You'll struggle to organize your thoughts.
- Your writing will be as blah as your feelings, unless you're a skilled writer who can persevere and use time-tested techniques, some of which I mention near the end of this post.
I've struggled with this myself. I have over 100 blog posts drafts that I've started and abandoned, due to lack of enthusiasm.
Many failed blog posts originate with the writer's feeling that they "should" write about the topic. For example, perhaps you feel that you should warn investors that actively managed funds aren't as good as passively managed funds—or vice versa. But you just can't get excited about tackling the topic.
Skip topics that don't excite you in favor of topics that get you fired up. In the active vs. passive investing example, look for a small corner of the debate that interests you. Maybe you feel enthusiastic about your process for identifying exchange-traded funds that meet certain criteria that benefit investors. Tackle that topic instead.
Not sure what excites you? Here are ways to discover where your passion lies:
- Draw a mind map of potential topics. Look for where the energy lies in your map.
- Freewrite. Write for 10 minutes without stopping to correct or revise what you’ve written. You might start by asking, “what do I feel strongly about?” Once you’ve finished writing, review your output for the topics that inspire you.
- Ask other people. Your colleagues, friends, and family members may have noticed the topics that you discuss with extra enthusiasm.
If You Must Write About a Topic That Leaves You Cold
If you're writing on your personal or small-company blog, you have control over your topics. But what if you work for a larger company where topics are assigned to you?
In that case, try to tap someone else's passion. Perhaps you can speak to a coworker about why they care about your assigned topic. Then, you can write about the topic as a reporter, reflecting your source's enthusiasm.
If nobody at your firm cares about your topic, then put yourself in the shoes of your readers. Consider how your topic can solve a problem they face. Tap your passion for helping others.
How do you boost your financial blogging productivity? I'm always interested in ways to boost financial blogging productivity. Please share your best tips.
About the Author: Susan Weiner, CFA, of InvestmentWriting.com teaches “How to Write Blog Posts People Will Read: A 5-Week Writing Class for Financial Advisors” (next session starts Feb. 22). She is the author of Financial Blogging: How to Write Powerful Posts That Attract Clients. Follow her on Twitter, LinkedIn, or Facebook.