Here’s a secret: Never create anything from scratch.
The ability to create useful content on a consistent basis is the foundation of any successful content marketing strategy.
To do this, you have to learn to start a framework or any preset structure. Not only to create faster, but also to create better.
If I were to ask you how to write a blog post, you could probably rattle off a bunch of thoughts and tactics.
You’d probably tell me how you choose a topic or use short sentences to make your post more readable — both useful tactics to understand and utilize — but neither helps you when you are staring at the dreaded cursor as it menacingly blinks in your face.
The only thing that will help is to never start with a blank page. Instead, start with a framework.
There is a reason that novels, movies, and sitcoms follow proven structures and storylines — it’s because they work. And when you start with a framework, the process becomes simplified.
Create anything framework
Last year I attended Dan Martell’s Idea to Exit conference. During his lesson on content marketing for software startups, he taught us The Create Anything Framework. This is the exact process he’s used for creating over 160 YouTube videos and get 13,000+ subscribers.
I’ve now honed this process for myself and used to write articles for large publications, outline podcast episodes, and create live workshops. This works for any piece of content, and when used it will enable you never to have to stare at a blank screen again.
It is a six-part framework to create anything. Each of the six parts will vary in length, but follow consecutively from one through six every time you use it.
Opportunity: Sell the outcome to your audience
We are busy, distracted, and all have too many things battling for our attention. As a creator, this is your opportunity to stand out and get noticed.
Your content needs to start with the opportunity awaiting your audience. What’s in it for them and what will they get out of paying attention to what you’ve created.
If you can quickly show your audience what their life will look like after consuming and implementing your content, then you will make it clear that what you have created is for them and it will make their life better, happier, or faster.
Challenge: What hurdle needs to be overcome?
You’ve sold your audience on the outcome and grabbed their attention. Now you need to use an old-school sales tactic and overcome (or at least acknowledge) their most obvious objection.
When you overcome or acknowledge their most obvious objection, they will immediately let their guard down. This is where they begin the process of trusting and believing what you have to say.
It can be as simple as admitting that the process of achieving the opportunity is not going to happen without hard work (and maybe a little luck).
Expert story positioning: What makes you the expert?
This short section needs to reinforce to your audience why you are worth listening to.
Why are you the best person to help them with this problem?
What are your qualifications? Have you implemented this successfully or learned it from someone else?
Your goal in this section is to position yourself as the expert in your audience's mind.
Framework: Getting meta with it
When we structure our information as a framework, we make it easier for our audience to comprehend and retain what we are teaching.
By forcing yourself to put your content into a framework, it forces you to think in a systematically. A framework pushes you to a deeper understanding of your topic — both for yourself and your audience.
Think of the framework as a template for understanding. It doesn’t need to be called a framework, but it does give your audience the logical steps to solving or understanding their problem.
You can use checklists, bullet points, or step-by-step, but the goal is the same — giving your audience actionable steps to either gain clarity or to take immediate action.
Review: Tell them what you told them
A fundamental teaching technique is to:
- Tell them what you are going to teach them (opportunity)
- Teach them (framework)
- Tell them what you taught them (review)
This simple and powerful technique works because it places the lesson in context and then uses repetition and variation to make it easier for your audience to remember.
So you don’t need to overthink this section, but also don’t gloss over or skip it. You need to review what you’ve covered in your piece of content.
Call to Action: What is the next step?
You’ve taken the time and effort to create a great piece of content and helped your audience take advantage of an opportunity.
Now they need to know what to do next. This is explained with a call to action (CTA) and is the next step you would like them to take.
Call to action ideas:
- Call you for more information
- Join your email list for a special offer
- Sign up for your new course
- Leave a comment
- Subscribe to your podcast or YouTube channel
- Get on the waiting list for your new product
- Sign up to get a free report
The more in line your call to action is with your piece of content, the more effective it will be.
The more closely linked the offer is to the topic or problem, the more urgent the call to action becomes — and with urgency comes action.
Now you understand the create anything framework. Use this six-part framework to create better content more efficiently and faster.