Growing confidence with your content writing
I love to write. I love sharing my writing less. I feel self-conscience putting something I’ve written out in the world. Is this interesting? Am I knowledgeable enough to share this? Will people care?
It’s something I’ve struggled with for quite a while. However, recently I’ve grown a lot more confident. I challenged myself to reflect on what it is that changed for me.
So, here’s my best attempt at sharing how I overcame this struggle. Or, how I learned to stop worrying and just hit publish.
Validate content like you validate a startup idea
I used to think of content writing as a chore. I'd sit at my desk knowing we needed to pump out a blog post, and then I'd strain to think of an idea. Then I'd draft something, post it, share it on social media.
The problem with this is I was never really sure if the idea for content was interesting. I'd draft it in a vacuum, then put it out in the world. More often than not, no one would comment or re-share it because it didn't resonate. Not having any positive feedback made me feel bad about the post, and the cycle would continue.
Recently, what I've been doing instead is posting 'minimum viable content.’ For instance, a reply to a tweet, or a comment on a post on reddit or Indie Hackers. I'll respond to someone's question or share some insight I have. Often no one responds to it. However, some of the time, it gets a hugely positive response, or sparks a conversation, or gets you those sweet, sweet upvotes.
If something I post gets a good response, I tend to turn it into long-form content like a blog, or a Twitter thread. The early validation makes the rest of the process flow a lot better, because I know I am addressing a subject that at least some people want to know more about. I also then feel more confident sharing it in other channels or replying in more detail on other similar threads.
Write about stuff you are passionate about
This might not always be possible, but I am fortunate enough to be in the position that I am writing content for a target audience that is similar to me: early-stage founders. It is an area I am passionate about. This makes creating content way more fun. It also means that I tend to know a lot about these subjects, which is also a nice boost of confidence.
Get feedback before you post
This is critical for me. I share my draft with at least one other person. I care very little about the grammar and spelling mistakes (ideally there are none because Grammarly handles this). What I do care about is having one person view something before I put it out there, and getting their overall feedback. For me, having this additional screen makes me much more confident in putting something out in the world.
We also created the Content Support group on Indie Hackers to help with getting feedback. Join us!
The last thing that works well for me - trying to worry less. People are busy. They have their own shit to worry about. If you write a blog post that isn't great, most people don't care. They aren't keeping score on what you are doing. What's worse is not putting some great content out in the world because you are afraid you might also produce some mediocre content.
I hope that is helpful for you or inspires you to hit publish and share on things you create. And when you do, tweet at us. We’d love to read what you are writing about.