Tag Archives: Content Writing Process

How do I write content on difficult topics?

Do you follow a process when writing content on difficult topics? What do you do? Do you follow a process?

For many years I have been writing on technology, and a majority of my current clients come from this field, so, it rarely happens that I come across a topic I find difficult. Comprehensive, yes, even exasperating in terms of quantity and scale, but not difficult.

Nonetheless, there are times when I am baffled. The topic is alien or I don’t have enough knowledge. The fact that sometimes it is not possible to find information on the web exacerbates the matter further. Or the template provided by the client is designed in such a manner that finding and writing content based on the layout turns out to be a Herculean task.

So, what do I do? My first source is the client. In most of the cases the client isn’t eager to pay for the time I may have to spend on research, so he or she eagerly sends me the needed information. For example, I request some links that explain the topic. I don’t waste my time researching for it because I know that for the client it will be faster to find the right information.

If the client is ready to pay me for research, I do my own research. Sometimes I don’t even tell the client that I’m charging extra for research; I simply prepare the quotation in such a manner that the time for research is also included.

These days it’s easy to find information on the Internet provided you know what to look for, and where to look. Starting to write can be a problem, especially when there is gap in understanding.

I start with randomly jotting down my thoughts. I don’t even bother with complete sentences. I pick up phrases and expressions from the reference links. My sole focus is on the words and expressions that I’m writing. I try to get comfortable with them. I even write random sentences with these words and expressions that have got nothing to do with the current article or blog post.

Another thing that helps me is that I’m not trying to prove myself as a better writer. I don’t need to impress anyone. I need to inform as clearly and with as few words as possible. I need to educate. So, even a sentence containing 3-5 words would do.

But the reality is that the client demands certain number of words. Suppose I’m asked to write about the benefits of creating digital wallets with blockchain technology and the blog post must be 1000 words.

Without worrying about those 1000 words, I simply focus on the central theme. I may create bulleted points listing all the benefits of such digital wallets. I may write a paragraph.

Then I start creating the context. Context is very important to build a narrative. For that, I may explain what digital wallets are, what is blockchain technology, why more businesses are using digital wallets and why more businesses are using blockchain technology. This gives me a few hundred words.

Then, I find examples of businesses actively using digital wallets in general and digital wallets built on blockchain technology in particular.

After having written 500-600 words, I grow comfortable. Afterwards, if you ask me to write 3000 words on the topic, I can manage even that.

Dealing with writer’s block as a professional content writer

The email shows a dog facing a blockade

Content writing and writers blockCo

As a professional content writer, you need to write every day because if you don’t write, you don’t get paid.

Your client who wants to publish his blog post or webpage or landing page or press release or whatever, couldn’t care less about your writer’s block, in case you are having one.

If you have committed to deliver the document by Wednesday, you must deliver the document by Wednesday, writer’s block or no writer’s block.

What is writer’s block?

Frankly speaking, as a writer I have never believed in the concept of writer’s block. You write, or you don’t write.

Yes, you are distracted sometimes. You are demotivated. Thousands of other thoughts barge into your mind and you cannot focus on writing. You also lose confidence sometimes.

You suddenly begin to hate every word you write, and you begin to feel that you are the worst writer in the world and people are going to laugh at you or ridicule you when they read your writing.

Every artist, and in fact, every professional goes through such phases.

Surely, writing is different. It is not physical. It is not worldly. Just imagine, you don’t just imagine, you also put your imagination into words and then put those words on paper or on screen and even if there is a slight disconnect, the entire imagery collapses.

So yes, if writers think that writer’s block is a unique phenomenon that manifests just among writers, I don’t disagree.

Do I get writer’s block as a content writer?

I do, but at least in my case, I firmly believe that it is my own doing.

There is a writer who writes stories: JK Rowling or Narendra Kohli.

Then, there is a writer who writes content for websites, information articles, blog posts and even opinion pieces and articles for newspapers and magazines.

Content writers and journalists are less prone to being hit by writer’s block because usually, there is a lot to write.

For example, as a content writer, I don’t have to wait for an idea. I’m given a brief by the client and I know exactly what I must write and what I have to achieve through my writing.

With a writer, the problem is rarely about writing – it is like driving a car, once you know how to drive, you know how to drive, and you don’t even have to think about it – it is what to write about.

For example, if a great writer like Narendra Kohli has to write, he first needs to come up with the story, come up with the characters, string the stories and the characters together, and then write the story, without getting distracted, even for months. It can be a humongous task.

A content writer, on the other hand, solely needs to focus on the current job at hand that is, maybe 500 words long, or 1500 words, or 3000 words max.

The topic is there, and in most of the cases the information can be found no matter how hard it is to find it.

So, where does the question of writer’s block arise in the case of a content writer?


Distraction is the biggest writer’s block in the life of a content writer.

This distraction comes through social media and social networking websites, through emails, through social networking apps, through phone calls and through whatever the connected world throws at us these days.

How do I deal with writer’s block as a content writer?

It’s easy, actually. Since, I know that I get writer’s block when I’m distracted or when my passion has been consumed by a subject that has got nothing to do with my client’s work, all I have to do is, create an environment where external messages cannot reach me.

I have mentioned this in my previous blog posts also, to stop social media distractions, I use ColdTurkey to block websites like Twitter and Facebook.

I mostly get distracted when there is lots of political noise, for example the ongoing elections in India. I cannot keep myself away from knowing what people are talking about.

So, along with activating ColdTurkey I also keep my phone in another room. This prevents me from unconsciously picking up the phone to check updates or to post something that comes to my mind.

Even after taking these measures sometimes it becomes difficult to write.

In such cases, I just start writing. Over the years, I have experienced that when I stick to my writing for at least 20 minutes, without giving up and without getting distracted (and without finding an excuse to abandon something that is taxing my mind), the writing begins to flow smoothly.

Another thing that helps me get over my writer’s block is I start writing in monosyllables or single sentences. It’s easier to write a word than a sentence.

Usually, the thoughts are there. Sometimes the information is lacking. Sometimes, there is no conviction, especially when one is not sure whether the information at hand is correct or not.

At that time, it’s better to write very short sentences, sometimes even a single word. It is better than doing nothing.

Eventually, and this has been 100% true, the words automatically begin to fill in the document turns out to be fine.

My content writing process for different niches

My content writing process

My content writing process

In this blog post I’m going to explain my content writing process for different niches – different industries and segments.

This content writing process is for general reference as well as for clients who want to know what process I will be following when I write content for them.

What exactly do I do to make sure that I use the right language for that particular audience?

Here is the outline of my content writing process:

Many clients who contact me for the first time ask a very valid question, “What makes me a good writer for their niche?”

Also, what is going to be my content writing process?

Someone from a web design company wants to know how I will adapt my content writing for their audience.

Someone from a jewelry design company wants to know the same, and so does someone from a real estate construction company.

At the outset I would like to tell you that I am most comfortable writing on technology.

This is due to 2 facts:

  1. I have great interest in technology: I read a lot about technology. I firmly believe that it has a strong, positive impact on our society. Personally, since I have cerebral palsy, technology plays a big role in enabling me to earn a living and also make my day-to-day life easier without having to go out.
  2. Technology businesses understand content marketing better: It’s easier to work with technology companies because they understand the importance of quality content. Since they understand its importance, they also know that they need to pay for the service. Hence, by the time they approach a content writer, they have the budget for it.

Then what enables me to write for other business realms?

Do I follow a special content writing process?

Well-defined content writing process for different niches

Well-defined content writing process for different niches

I have been writing content since 2004.

I have written content for all major industries and business segments including Internet marketing, web design, software development, surveillance, background check, detective services, high-tech gadgets, home appliances, accessories and apparels, photography, hospitality industry, real estate industry, non-profit, healthcare businesses, emotional and physical well-being, legal counseling and even a rock band.

And there are many categories I cannot recall right now.

Owing to my well-defined content writing process, I can say with confidence that I can count the number of unsatisfied clients on my fingers.

In most of the cases, clients have been satisfied, happy, and whenever they have needed content, they have come back.

For a good writer, for a trained and experienced writer, writing for varied niches isn’t as hard as it may seem in the beginning.

Journalism is a different ball game.

Specialization matters in journalism because you are not just informing people of the latest happenings in your niche, sometimes directly and sometimes indirectly, you are also expressing opinion, and when you express opinion, you need to know lots of other stuff.

But when it comes to content writing for business websites, as long as you have the basic information, a style guide, and writing experience, quality content can be written.

My content writing process

Content writing process explained

Content writing process explained

Here is the process I follow when writing content for different niches:

Submit content writing samples

Once I receive a query and the client shows interest in my content writing services, I submit appropriate samples.

Over the years I have written for many niches. Most of the times I have a live sample (active links) that I can share with my client.

What happens if I don’t have a sample?

I request the client to give me a topic and I prepare a write up of around 300 words. This is enough to give an idea to the client how I will be writing and how I present my idea.

The sample often gives an insight on my writing style, my presentation, text formatting and research abilities, if needed.

Take an advance for my content writing services

Once the client finds the sample/samples acceptable, I request an advance.

If it is a small project – one blog post, one web page, or one email marketing campaign – I take full advance.

If it is a medium-sized project – 5-10 pieces of content – I take a 50% advance.

For larger projects, I take a commitment money and after that, I may charge every month.

Why I take an advance?

When I start working on a project, I will be committing my time.

I need to make sure that the time that I’m spending, I will be spending on a paid assignment.

Charging an advance also raises stakes on the client side.

They respond faster. They are more committed. There is greater cooperation.

Do background reading

This helps me set the tone.

Different industries have different languages and different styles.

They even have different concerns.

Though, sometimes the budget available for a particular content writing project doesn’t give enough scope for extensive reading, depending on how much payment I’m getting, reading is an essential part of the content writing process.

Reading helps you understand how people write in the industry and how I can write better.

Understand the concerns of the end customers and clients

Content writing is basically for end customers and clients.

If you are a web design company and if I’m writing for you, I’m writing for your clients.

They should be able to understand how they will benefit if they hire your web design services.

A content writing process is not complete without understanding the needs of the end customers and clients.

Similarly, if you are a jewelry seller and I write for you, I will write keeping in mind the needs and desires of your customers who will buy jewelry from you after reading your content.

Make a list of primary and secondary keywords

Keywords are not just for SEO.

They also help you write for the target audience using the language the target audience prefers.

When you have a list of primary and longtail keywords, it gives you an idea of what terms to focus on while writing content.

Of course, using primary and secondary keywords is also good for your SEO.

Write the first draft of the first document

I first create the outline.

Crafting an outline is important if a document is long: 1500-2000 words.

Otherwise everything goes haywire.

I write all the subheadings first.

I make a list of all the important points that I would like to cover.

I also write phrases and expressions that my client doesn’t want me to miss in the document.

Since the first document sets the tone and also gives an idea to the client how I’m going to approach the project, a lot depends on the first document.

I prepare the first draft and send it to the client for approval. This is where the core part of the content writing process kicks in.

The client can suggest changes and I try to incorporate those changes as soon as possible so that the main project can be kickstarted.

After evaluating the first document, the client can also decide whether he or she would like to continue with me or explore other options.

Submit the document for review

The review of the first document is one of the most important parts of my content writing process.

The review of the first document sets the tone of the remaining documents.

It is very important for the client to properly go through the first draft and suggest revisions, if any.

Based on the suggestions made by the client, I revise the document.

I move forward only when the first document is approved by the client and he or she is satisfied.

Work on the remaining documents

While working on the first document I gather as much information as possible about the project.

Once the client is happy and satisfied with the first document, I proceed with other documents.

Most of the clients prefer to get the documents as they are completed so that in case there is some problem, it can be sorted out.

I also prefer this because then psychologically, I’m always on my toes and I don’t leave all the documents to the last couple of days.

Concluding remarks on my content writing process

Ultimately, it rests on the client whether he or she wants to work with me or not, whatever is my content writing process.

Sometimes, I can quickly make out whether I myself want to work on a project or not and I communicate this to the client.

Fortunately, most of the serious clients (clients who convert and eagerly pay) have already gone through my samples.

They have also gone through my website and my blog.

They are convinced that I can write for them even if initially they think I need to educate myself about their business, which I obviously do.

10 tips to write high-quality content extremely fast

Writing High-Quality Content Extremely Fast

If you want to use content marketing to promote your business online, the greatest hurdle can be writing high-quality content on an ongoing basis. This might not be a problem if you are a big business and you have a budget to achieve this. But if you are a small business, it might be a bit difficult to hire a full-time content writer and you may have to churn up something relevant on your own, preferably, every day.

According to this Content Marketing Institute report (it’s a PDF), 51% B2C content marketers face the challenge of producing enough high-quality content. 57% claim that they don’t have enough time to produce the sort of content that is actually effective. Predictably, larger companies, since they have more budget and they can hire the people who can produce quality content, don’t face much difficulty in producing high quality content compared to smaller companies.

Why do you need to write high-quality content on an ongoing basis?

There is lots of competition on the Internet. When you are not writing, scores of your competitors are. This is because people who take their content marketing seriously know that without content no marketing exists. Since everybody is producing content in one form or another, everybody tries to outdo each other. Although it would be impractical to outdo everybody, there is a certain degree of pace that you need to keep in order to remain visible and not get left behind. For example, if you are a small business I would suggest that you publish at least 3 blog posts every week on your business blog and then promote individual blog posts as much as you can using various channels available to you. This is an ongoing process. You can’t add 20 odd blog posts and articles in one go and think that your content marketing is over. In fact, it has just started. The search engines won’t even start crawling or indexing your content if you just have 20 blog posts. You need to continuously publish for at least a few months in order to get a decent presence on the Internet, compared to your competitors.

How do you write high-quality content extremely fast?

So how do you write high-quality content extremely fast so that you can fit in content marketing with your busy professional schedule? After all, writing content isn’t your main occupation. It is just one of the marketing activities and as you already know, there are many other promotional activities you will need to focus on in order to beat competition.

  1. Always be on the lookout for great writing ideas:
    You should be sensitive towards receiving new content writing ideas because once you become sensitive, you will notice that such ideas are everywhere. While reading blog posts and articles, while going through your Facebook, Twitter and Google + news feeds and even while reading magazines and newspaper, once your mind becomes receptive, you will receive content writing ideas. There is a UK-based company for whom I’m writing content that is totally unrelated to its field, still I need to relate the content to its field and write interesting content. Now I wonder why I never did this for my own business.
  2. Maintain an ideas bank:
    Ideas come and when you don’t preserve them, they go vanish into the oblivion. So once they hit you, you need to save them somewhere. You can use something like Evernote to preserve your ideas. If Evernote is too bulky for you, you can use Google Keep.
  3. Work on multiple content topics at the same time: Sometimes you feel stuck and when you feel stuck, it causes delay. When you start working on a blog post or an article for your website, don’t think that you need to publish it on the very same day (I used to get trapped in this rut). You need to practice patience. Let it simmer whenever you feel that you cannot move forward. Instead of wasting your time staring at the screen, move onto another topic. When you feel that you have something valuable to add to the previous blog post or article, come back to it and start writing again. Make use of all the technology tools available to you. Save your content writing documents on the cloud using services like Dropbox, Google Drive or even One Drive so that you can access your documents from anywhere, from any device.
  4. Remain ahead of the schedule: It’s like, if you need to complete or publish something on Wednesday, don’t wait for Wednesday morning. Try to complete it on Tuesday, and if possible even on Monday. I’m trying to practice this with my content writing projects. Sometimes I used to feel very relaxed because hey, if you need to dispatch something on Wednesday, why worry on Monday, or even Tuesday. This creates crunch time and when it is crunch time, it’s difficult to be in a commanding position and for a writer, it’s very important to be in the commanding position.
  5. Maintain and stick to an editorial calendar: Editorial calendar means deciding on which day you’re going to write and publish what. Maintaining an editorial calendar is a good way to keep your content writing juices flowing and also remain on schedule. If you don’t have an editorial calendar, you become relaxed. For example, if you were supposed to publish something on Wednesday and you didn’t, then there is a great chance you won’t publish it even on Thursday, or even on Friday. And then it becomes a pattern. You start missing days and then soon you realise, you aren’t publishing content at all. Having said that, my personal experience is that an editorial calendar works better for bigger businesses because they have dedicated teams of content writers to take care of the tight schedule. When it comes to small businesses, more than sticking to the editorial calendar, I stress on regularly publishing content, as often as you can, because this is far better than having no content.
  6. Constantly save reference and research material: Just like you should preserve ideas, you should also preserve reference and research material somewhere. Again, my favourite tool for this is Evernote. You can create notebooks and within those notebooks you can create notes to save different stuff. This isn’t the best thing, the best thing is that you can attach tags to various notes. For example, if I have saved something and tagged it as “content marketing stats”, the next time I need to use some solid content marketing stats in one of my blog posts, I can quickly search the relevant tag and find the material that I need to use. Remember that it is not about saving your stats and other bits of information, it’s about finding them when you need them. Evernote is great in finding your saved information but I haven’t used Google Keep extensively (but considering it’s from Google, it might have faster searching and indexing mechanism). Another benefit of using Evernote is that you can get a browser plug-in that allows you to save information while you’re surfing the web which, right now, is not possible with Google Keep.
  7. Develop your own unique voice: You can write high-quality content extremely fast if you don’t try to imitate someone. This is same as trying to walk like someone else – although for some time it might be fun, after a while you will get tired and you would like to resume your own way of working. The same goes with content writing, or for that matter any sort of writing. You need to develop your own unique voice, your own style, your own way of writing. When you have your own way of writing, you are extremely comfortable and when you’re comfortable, you write fast and fluently.
  8. Continuously educate yourself: Continuous education is a must if you want to write high-quality content fast on an ongoing basis. The more you know, the more confident you feel and the more confident you feel, the easier the words come to you. If you don’t know something, how are you going to write about it? If you are not comfortable with the topic, you will need to do lots of research and you will need to write about stuff you don’t know much about. This makes your writing stiff. As a professional content writer, I’m used to writing on totally alien topics with great amount of ease but that is because I have gotten used to it. I have been writing content for different businesses for many years now so if I need to do some research and then write accordingly, I don’t face much problem, but then again, in order to come to this level, you need lots of practice and experience.
  9. Cover a single topic in a single piece of content: You don’t want to pack everything into a single piece of content. For example, in this blog post I’m writing about how to write high-quality content extremely fast. I’m not writing about optimized content. I’m not trying to tell how to make your content social media friendly. I’m not telling here how to optimally use keywords in order to improve your search engine rankings with SEO content writing. No, I’m just talking about how to write lots of high-quality content in as fast a manner as possible.
  10. Rewrite existing content: You can rewrite existing content faster than writing new content from scratch. If you have lots of blog posts, webpages and articles already published on your website, you can choose a subtopic and then expand upon it. Or, a lot must have changed since you wrote on that particular topic a couple of years ago. Why not write it with a completely new perspective, using the latest information that you have with you?

The tips mentioned above will help you create high-quality content quite fast but ultimately it depends on you whether you want to develop the mindset that helps you write quality content on a regular basis. It’s all about getting started and once you get used to it, you will discover that it is quite easy to regularly write and publish good content not just for your own blog or website, but also for various other websites where you can expand your presence.