How to Turn One Content Idea into a Fascinating Four-Part Series

How to Turn One Content Idea into a Fascinating Four-Part Series

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"Shift from publishing content to building anticipation for your next installment." – Stefanie Flaxman

Sometimes it’s really helpful to prepare multiple pieces of content in advance.

You might be:

But how do you plan your content, create it, and meet your publishing deadlines without getting overwhelmed?

Let’s start with a simple, small task: selecting one content idea.

Then we’ll break down that one idea into a fascinating four-part series. The process I’m going to share is a straightforward way to communicate your expertise, in a format that is easy for your audience to consume and share.

Shift from publishing content to building anticipation for your next installment

The example I’m going to give will demonstrate how to produce a four-part blog series, but you can adapt the guidance to produce podcast episodes or videos as well.

When you do, you shift from merely publishing content to actively building anticipation for your next installment.

Content marketing and copywriting work so well together because copywriting helps you stir something in your audience so that they’re invested in the content you produce.

"You’ve got to stir something in them before they’ll do something." – Brian Clark

If you produce one piece of content a week, the installments below will give you four weeks of content, but they could also publish four consecutive days in a row or every other day. See what works for you.

Installment #1: Establish your authority

Here’s where you select your content idea.

Let’s pretend you run a health-conscious, organic bakery that serves tasty desserts.

Your customers love your grape jam, so you want to give your blog readers a recipe for grape jam with natural ingredients and no added sugar.

Start with a basic “how to ___” to generate your content idea. “How to ___” might not be your final headline, but filling in that blank with details helps narrow your focus.

How to Make Mouth-Watering Grape Jam (with Less Sugar than Grocery-Store Brands)

In this first installment, you’ll establish your authority by:

  • Introducing the topic in a unique way
  • Explaining your interest in writing about it
  • Describing your organic bakery’s philosophy

The motivation behind the information you share should be: why someone should listen to your advice about the topic.

answer this: why you?

Then outline what you’ll cover in upcoming installments, weaving in anecdotes about how your tutorial will be more beneficial than other grape jam recipes.

And that’s it for your first post.

At the end of the content

  • Write a call to action (CTA) for readers to subscribe to your blog to get the next piece of content via email.

Installment #2: Educate with a simple, relevant background lesson

The goal of this post is to make readers feel ready to follow your advice.

Link to installment #1 in your introduction and then write more background information about making your grape jam.

What types of kitchen tools will they need? Where are the best places to buy the ingredients you’ll recommend? What is your issue with grape jams that have added sugar? How did you discover this recipe?

"Building trust is bigger than tactics — it’s your entire mission." – Brian Clark

You build trust as you educate your audience and offer useful suggestions that prepare them for the next installment.

At the end of the content

  • Provide an “Additional Reading” section, with a link to installment #1.
  • Write a CTA for readers to subscribe to your blog to get the next piece of content via email.

Installment #3: Share your tutorial

The big moment has arrived.

In this post, you’ll show how to make your grape jam, step by step. You could also discuss the type of container you like to store the jam in and how long it will stay fresh.

"It can be scary to put your story out there on the web. It’s also empowering." – Jerod Morris

The tutorial should make sense to anyone, even if they didn’t read the previous two installments. But there will likely be opportunities throughout the text to link to the other installments you’ve already published.

When you edit your first draft, look for ways to engage and entertain. Give readers an experience they won’t have on other bakery blogs.

At the end of the content

  • Provide an “Additional Reading” section, with links to installment #1 and installment #2.
  • Write a CTA for readers to subscribe to your blog to get the next piece of content via email.

Installment #4: Add extra value and advanced tips

Encourage readers to experiment with your recipe and inspire them to learn more about organic desserts.

What types of bread complement the grape jam? Can they easily alter the recipe to make strawberry, blueberry, or raspberry jam? Is the grape jam an ingredient in other recipes you’ll publish in the future?

"Don't tell me it's 'awesome,' 'epic,' or 'amazing.' Show me why." – Sonia Simone

If you plan to create additional four-part series, you can tease upcoming tutorials that will cover related topics.

At the end of the content

  • Provide an “Additional Reading” section, with links to installment #1, installment #2, and installment #3.
  • Write a CTA for readers to subscribe to your blog to get your content via email.

Bring it all together

Once you’ve published all the installments:

  • Edit the “Additional Reading” section at the end of installment #1 so that it has links to installment #2, installment #3, and installment #4.
  • Add links to installment #3 and installment #4 in the “Additional Reading” section at the end of installment #2.
  • Add a link to installment #4 in the “Additional Reading” section at the end of installment #3.

Ready to write your next content series?

In the comment section below, let us know about the topic you’ll tackle with this method.

The post How to Turn One Content Idea into a Fascinating Four-Part Series appeared first on Copyblogger.

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July 24, 2017 at 09:13AM

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