If you are reading this, you probably have been struggling in the field of content creation. You may have wrote a few good pieces but you have ran out of ideas.
This advice doesn’t come from me. It comes from serial entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk. Without fail, he and his 700 person strong team at VaynerMedia have produced content out consistently. He developed a system to do it that can be summed up in 3 simple words.
DOCUMENT OVER CREATE.
It’s an important mindset shift that applies to any format, be it text, audio or video.
Before we proceed, we must ask ourselves this one question:
Why do we go online for?
Really. We surf the web, use the internet whatever you call it. But why do we go online?
Some go online to book tickets, some go online to check prices, some just go online to watch YouTube videos.
But whatever it is that you do, the internet is a place of information. You go online to consume information. You can’t literally grab a drink out of your computer screen. Everything that exists on the web exists in the form of information.
Knowing that the internet is a place of information, we can go about our content creation in a way that serves that need.
Now, let’s understand the three words – “Document Over Create.”
The logic behind this approach stems from the idea that we consume information more than we create it.
With the amount of things we consume (videos, posts, memes), we have recorded a wealth of ideas in our heads.
Whenever somebody asks us something, we never hesitate to say what we know. We never have speaker’s block (like how Seth Godin poetically illustrated here.)
We can translate that attitude into our content creation.
Instead of trying to make every single post or video perfect, we should aim to catalogue all the thoughts and ideas we have.
There should be a perfect post produced regularly. But don’t let that stop you from creating a catalogue of content in the meantime.
How Gary does it is by having a camera crew follow him wherever he goes (his meetings and his daily business) and pick out the best parts for a daily vlog to post on Facebook and YouTube.
From that vlog, if the editor’s find a few good quotes, they would create quote cards for Instagram.
Great nuggets of information suitable for audio would be uploaded onto SoundCloud.
A single source of footage is distributed into multiple mediums.
His team documents instead of consciously trying to create.
This approach creates a tonne of content daily that shows up on people’s newsfeeds over and over again.
This in turn creates content frequency and puts him in the best position to be top of mind of his fans.
Now, if you are only a one person crew, there are other ways to go around it.
Firstly, you should have a notepad with you at all times.
Your mind is far more creative than you think.
In just a day, you have more than 100 thoughts and ideas (conservatively).
We have 100 block of 10 minutes a day (that’s how I got the calculation).
Any of you who wrote a diary before gets a strong sense of nostalgia when you read your old entries.
Some of you forgot what happened. Some of you were even surprised on how well you explained yourself.
Build a portfolio of your thoughts. Document them and vet the ones to publish.
Be the best diary writer EVER.
To wrap up, this is a quote from Gary himself:
“We should be more concerned about showing people the process that we are going through, than the advice that we think we are supposed to give.”
If you can’t create, distribute.
There is no excuse.