At its heart, financial content marketing is about writing.
Even after years of doing it, our writers here at MarketingAdviser still encounter “writer’s block”. What should we write about this week? How can we shed fresh light on a topic? It never gets easier to stare at a blank page.
Even the best fiction writers struggle to produce excellent content on a regular basis. It is mentally tiring, wrought with frustration and revisions. Yet the fruits of great content creation are well worthwhile.
The difference between good content and great content is stark. The former can educate the reader, but the latter can inspire them. Our goal at MarketingAdviser is to help financail firms achieve this great content for their brands – delighting readers and building trust though compelling thought leadership.
Below, we’ll be sharing some of what we’ve learned over the years about how to overcome writing challenges.
We hope this helps your financial content marketing. To discuss your own project/campaign with us, get in touch to arrange a free, no-commitment online consultation with a member of our team.
Look for inspiration
Whilst you do not want to copy what others are writing, it can help inspire your own ideas to check out others’ work.
Here, you could investigate competitors’ blogs to see if you can provide a fresh spin/angle on a topic they’ve chosen. Another idea is to look at news outlets. For instance, the money sections or investment pages of national newspapers can provide some great ideas.
Another idea is to look at what’s trending on YouTube. What are prominent “fin-fluencers” talking about? What about the channels of financial news or national/global financial planning firms?
Finally, consider going through old articles on your website – e.g. those from 1-2 years ago, that have likely now been forgotten about. Do any of these need updating in light of new developments, which may be pertinent to write about?
For some people, the problem isn’t that they don’t have enough ideas. Rather, they have too many swirling around their heads.
Here, it can help just to start writing. Don’t worry if the grammer is poor, if the thoughts are unrelated or if it all feels incoherent. Often, just putting your ideas onto a page can lift them “out of your head” – giving you mental space to make sense of it all.
You could even try writing on a completely unrelated topic to what you think you should be writing about. Perhaps you can write a short post on your personal blog, write a journal entry or compose an email to a loved one.
Ask for help
When you really are stuck, it never hurts to simply tell a trusted person that you need help.
Quite often, a friend or colleague will have ideas for topics/angles that you may not have considered. Alternatively, you could try writing a piece whilst imaging your friend is the primary audience. This can help you find your “voice” again.
A second pair of eyes can also be hugely helpful after you have written your draft, of course. Whilst it is good to proof-read your own work, a fresh mind looking over the content can identify errors you may have missed – resulting in a better final version.
Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, it seem impossible to break your writer’s block in the moment.
Getting increasingly frustrated over this is unlikely to result in an end result that you are happy with. Consider sleeping on it and coming back with a fresh mind the next day. This allows your subconscious to process your thinking whilst you sleep.
Quite often, doing household tasks can release creative stifling. For instance, many prominent artists have told about how their best songs or ideas emerged whilst having a shower. This is partly because the water falling on our bodies helps release dopamine!
Look to your own life
Is there anything interesting or notable that happened recently in your personal experience?
Looking to anecdotes – e.g. a stimulating conversation you had with someone – can provide a great introductory story for a blog post. Here, you can then draw out 2-3 “lessons” about financial planning, which you want your reader to remember.
Perhaps you recently saw a film that you really enjoyed, or listening to an amazing piece of music. It could be that you had a meaningful moment with a child, or relative. Or, maybe you learned something new whilst doing some exercise.
The great advantage of financial planning is that it touches upon many aspects of normal human life. Therefore, you potentially have access to a continuous source of fresh material for your content marketing!
Check your wider routine
What does your typical day look like? Are there any habits going on in your life which may be obstructing your creativity?
Take your morning routine. Do you normally get up at the same time? Do you go through the same – or similar – steps as you get ready for work and head into the office? Having healthy habits in wider life can help form the discipline you need for creativity.
This might sound counter-intuitive. Isn’t creativity meant to be something spontaneous – not “scheduled”? However, the difficult reality is that, if you only wait until you “feel creative” to start writing, you will almost never start!
Try allocating a set time of the day (or week) when you sit down for an hour or two, and dedicate yourself to writing.
The first 1-4 weeks may be deeply frustrating, failing to yield the results you would like. With time and dedication, however, you will start to form new habits which help you learn how to get your “creative juices” flowing.