As a professional in the food styling industry, blogging or writing about your work is probably a key element of your overall business. If it’s not, you could be missing the opportunity to reach thousands of people who are hoping to find someone like you, they just don’t know it’s YOU they are looking for.
Of course, if you’re a food blogger or food critic/reviewer, then you are definitely up on the power of the written word, content creation and what it can do for your business.
When it comes to creating content, one of the most frequent comments I hear is, “I’m not sure what to write” followed by, “But what if I’m not inspired?”. The next big sticking point is usually, “How do I make sure I’m consistent?” I’ve found that one of the easiest ways to remedy that is to plan for the creation so let me show you how.
Regarding not knowing what to write, develop a new level of awareness of what’s going on around you, and you’ll never be short of content topics again. It’s especially important to keep your eyes and ears open when around anyone or anything that has to do with your chosen field. At a restaurant, at an airport, watching food commercials on TV, any and all of these are great fodder for foodies. Pay attention to what people are saying or not saying, how they are interacting with the food and each other, what they’re eating and why. This is your area of expertise so coming up with content from these situations should be fairly easy.
Beyond that, you’ll still find plenty of topics for content from everyday situations if you think creatively. Getting your hair done? Ask your stylist where they like to eat or what their favorite foods are. You’ll be amazed at the conversation that ensues and this should spark some ideas you can write about. Whether you’re a food photographer, stylist or blogger, creating content that creates dialogues about food is a sure fire way to get attention and build a tribe.
Now that you’ve created some content, you need to have a plan to systematically get it written and get it out there into the world. One of the best ways to do this is to chunk your calendar year into quarters, then months and then create specific content for each month. Think themes and category topics. For spring, the theme could be fresh, new, light, inspiring. Your next step would be to draft up topics that you could write about over the course of two to three months. I like to sketch out topics and then turn those into lists. That way, I know exactly what I’m going to be writing about ahead of time so I don’t have to scramble to come up with something interesting at the last minute. Consistency is key to building your tribe so make sure you do it! Better one article a month with regularity than five in the first week before you drop off the face of the earth. Your readers need to know they can rely on you and this is also what keeps you as top of mind awareness.
Finally, commit to dates on your calendar where you set your own deadlines and have each piece ready to be released on certain dates. For example, let’s say that you are writing about fresh ideas in the kitchen for a period of two months. Your theme is “fresh” and your topic is creating something new in the kitchen. If you’re goal is to post something once a week, you’ll want to flesh out approximately eight blogs, articles or posts that specifically relate to creating something new in the kitchen. Now take those topics and create deadlines that you put into your calendar. Week one could be, “Getting brave in the kitchen. Isn’t it time?” where you would introduce they whole concept of experimentation with cooking. Next, put that article title in your calendar for release the week of May 1st. Keep coming up with themes and topics and then securing release dates for them. Voila! You have a real strategy for content creation and a plan to ensure your creation gets birthed.
So what if you’re not feeling inspired? You’ll find that when you treat writing as a real j-o-b, and it is something you’ll want to incorporate into your j-o-b in the food industry, you’ll start feeling inspired more often than not. After all, you’re passionate about what you do for a living so just ask yourself, “If I were an outsider, what would I ask myself as the expert today?” and go from there. Another trick I like to use is to think about the questions I’m asked most frequently asked and then create content by answering that question.
With a little effort, creating content and planning it so it fits into your business strategy can be easily managed, and this should make for some smooth and delicious writing experiences. Creating and planning just go together like the proverbial peanut butter and jelly and you won’t even have to cut off any crusts.
Written by Jane Garee, Our Sales Copy Strategist and Mentor at The Food Styling School.