Create a writing schedule, choose a niche writing topic, create a monthly theme and develop your own writing style.
Sadly, it’s been over 4 months since I wrote on my own blog. I could make all sorts of excuses WHY I haven’t written, but I won’t do that, because that’s what they would be, excuses. What I have been doing is focusing on building a strong foundation for my business and concentrating on client’s needs. Part of my foundation building has been writing for a savvy group of professional women, the Social Solutions Collective. The experience has allowed me to grow as a writer and develop a nuts and bolt style that works for me.
First I would NOT ever describe myself as a natural writer. My career in the corporate world included creating and writing many business presentations that communicated the financial health of programs I supported. You know the 60 page PowerPoint slide presentations with charts, graphs, and bullets.
Words like awesome sauce and juicy titles never made it across the keyboard. When you’re writing about the financial health of a multi-million dollar software development project for a room full of corporate managers, it’s just the facts and nothing more; heaven help you if you added humor to the numbers (I did that one time adding a cash register sound to my presentation–it had been a particularly profitable month!)
Here are the basics, just four of them, the nuts and bolt of what I’ve learned from writing for business and for our professional group. Maybe it will give you a nudge to keep writing, start writing, or just help you get on track.
Create A Schedule (And Stick To It)
My articles for the Social Solutions Collective are due twice a month on specific dates. I’ve found that actually having a deadline helps to keep my writing on track. There are all sorts of suggestions for how often a business should blog, go with your gut and what makes you comfortable. Try for at least two articles a month, see how it goes. If you’re losing sleep over writing change it to once a month. You don’t want it to become a “chore.”
Choose a Niche Writing Area
When writing, it helps to have a niche writing focus. My business is centered around helping small, local businesses get noticed in search engines and on social media. I love helping clients build a social media strategy, which includes tailoring their marketing strategy around the local community. My niche for Social Solutions Collective is also Local Social Media. Find your focus and build your writing around a smaller focus area.
Create A Content Theme
Our group has a content theme for each month. Having the theme helps tremendously when you are researching your article. Make the theme as wide open as possible. The theme for the Social Solutions Collective’s authors in August was “Back to School” or “Back To Basics.” You get the idea, the theme was broad enough that it didn’t matter what category you were writing about you could build your article around the theme.
Create A Comfortable Writing Style
Some writers can sit down and whip off an article in an hour. Not me. I start to develop the article two weeks before the deadline. Once I’ve set up a skeleton of ideas in MS Word (my choice of editor), I start fleshing out the topic, adding and deleting thoughts, re-arranging paragraphs. Then I step back and wait a day or so (usually some more thoughts come during that time) and then finalize the article. My goal is to have the article completed 1-2 days before the deadline, just in case.
If you’re struggling to write for your business, try these four suggestions. Create a writing schedule, choose a niche writing topic, create a monthly theme and develop your own writing style. Finally, never give up and never compare yourself to other authors. I spent months feeling inadequate as a writer…there are so many good articles and authors. As you keep writing, your style will appeal to a certain audience. Your audience may not comment and you may believe you’re writing to yourself, but you WILL be leaving your mark as an author.
What writing Nuts and Bolts keep you motivated and inspired as an author?