The winter months after the holidays have come and gone are by far the hardest for small business owners, meaning it’s time to take a step back and look at how low effort content creation can save your energy.
After the hustle and bustle of Christmas and trying to finish the year hitting your revenue goals, those of us who are already burning the candle at both ends are going to find themselves hitting a wall come January. Does that mean we can get away with dropping our newsletters and stopping all content creation?
If you’re like some of my clients and you’re lucky enough to have a marketing assistant to keep you going, this post might not be as relevant.
But if you’re handling your content creation yourself? Read on.
Low effort content doesn’t mean lazy content
Before I get started, let’s make one thing clear on what ‘low effort’ content means. ‘Low effort’ does not mean lazy.
For each of these options, you should be focused on how to alter the content to best serve your audience. Some of these involve reworking old content or collecting materials from other sources but make sure to add a touch of your personal flair to each piece of content you’re putting out.
‘Low effort’ in this context means that the workload to create a high-quality piece of content is reduced.
Low effort content takes less research and time developing the piece than one of the usual gold-mines of information you’re producing. You’re collecting and commenting on pre-existing materials with a focus on adding your personal touch to each piece.
So let’s get right into it.
Recycle your old content
Let’s get the most obvious piece of low effort content out of the way. Recycling your content is something you should be doing all year round after your first year of posting content regularly.
Recycling content means taking a look at what content is performing lowest and repurposing it as a new piece of content. Maybe it’s taking several posts that are covering the same topic and merging them together so they are competing.
How to do this:
Review the material you have posted on your site and ask yourself some questions:
- Can you combine this with another page on your website?
- Can you combine several lower-performing pieces to make a more useful post?
- Can you rewrite it for the current year?
- Can you rewrite it for a new audience?
- Can you repurpose it into a downloadable?
- Can you combine a couple of posts into cornerstone content?
Figure out how your old work can best serve your current audience and then pull the old work down as you work on the new stuff.
Write a post about one of your lead magnets
A lead magnet is an incentive that business owners offer to potential buyers in exchange for their email address or other contact information. Lead magnets usually offer a piece of digital, downloadable content, such as a free PDF checklist, report, eBook, whitepaper, video, etc.
If you have a really helpful lead magnet that isn’t seeing the same traffic that it used to, now is a great time to remind your audience about it.
The biggest mistakes I see business owners make with the sales funnels we build together are:
- They launch it once for a couple of weeks and then never bring it up again
- They don’t post about it on social platforms
- They don’t offer it during networking events, etc.
So pick one of your lead magnets and write a post about it. These posts are usually shorter and can have a greater impact on your audience by serving them a free tool to help them.
This honestly doesn’t even need to be a blog post native to your website. You can post on your platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin or even Medium.com.
While some of these platforms don’t do well with consistent long-form content, it doesn’t hurt to post something once in a while, especially if it’s offering a freebie.
Offering a list of cool lead magnets from other people
Take this time to build your relationships with your community of competitors. If you see that someone in an adjacent niche offered a really cool ebook or similarly useful something-or-other—make a post about it.
Here’s how to do it:
- Review your community (or competitors, if you’re comfortable) to see who is offering something awesome.
- Download them yourself. Give those opt-ins a good quality check to see that they would be relevant to your audience.
- Make a list of 5 – 10 of them from competitors who aren’t offering the *exact* same services as you are. It’s most effective if their services are similar and complementary to what you offer.
- Now write a post with this list, and add a bit of yourself into it. Which of them did you love? Why did you love them? What are they effective for? It’s like reviewing a product with the added bonus of providing value to your audience AND another person within your community.
Bonus: Write a quick note to each person on that list and let them know you’re featuring them in a post and give them a link once it’s published. Some people will share it because they’ve been featured and some won’t.
Offering a list of your own lead magnets
If you’ve spent the whole year putting out amazing content upgrades for people, now is a great time to bundle those up into a single list to make sharing it online easier.
This can be done as a post on your website, or even it’s own page if you have enough free resources to call it a library.
To compile this post, follow these steps:
- Make a list of all the links to your current opt-in content, paid and free.
- Write a quick snippet covering the benefits of each freebie.
- Make sure you have an image for each of your downloadable pieces.
- Create a post with an image, a snippet and a link that opens in a new window for each one.
Create a few images to promote this post that includes buzz words like:
- xx incredible tools to help you do…
- My top xx tools for your…
- My gift to you…
Post about your last year’s mistakes
A great piece of low effort content you can write is a list of mistakes you’ve made this year. And more importantly: How did you fix them.
While it’s never an easy post to write, it’s honest. It builds trust with your audience and it lets them know that they don’t have to be perfect. That you—while it may seem like you have your shit together—sometimes make mistakes as well.
So how to pull this one off:
- Make a list of the things that went wrong in your year and how you fixed them in a brainstorm session. Choose situations where you could fix it, so you don’t end up with an overly negative post.
- Circle the ones that you think your audience would resonate with. Would something similar happen to them?
- Write a post with 5 – 10 of the situations. Recount them in some detail how each situation happened and how you corrected it.
Make sure you have someone take a read through before you post to make sure you’re not disclosing sensitive info or that the post isn’t a negative one.
An affiliate list post
While I normally wouldn’t classify this post-type as a low effort content, it is a good style of post to increase revenue and post more content at the same time. And I’m all about saving energy where I can in the winter.
An affiliate post is designed for people who are actively selling affiliate products. For me, I talk about Siteground Hosting and Divi themes because those are the tools I use most often with my website clients.
These posts not only take minimal effort, but they are also a post you can use to decrease the amount of time you spend in your DM’s. For my hand lettering business, in particular, I get a lot of questions about the tools I use to make my artwork.
So in the end, I make money giving away trade secrets for free AND I spend less time explaining things to people who want to follow the same dream as me. Win-win.
For those of you who offer affiliates, here’s how to pull this post together:
- Make a list of things you use regularly (both affiliate and non-affiliate) for your business or your client’s businesses.
- Track down all your affiliate links and links to the products you recommend.
- Write a small snippet about why you love each one.
- Take screen captures of the products you’re recommending in action
- Compile it in a post and promote
Low effort content creation doesn’t mean low effort promoting
Unfortunately creating low effort content doesn’t mean that you aren’t going to be promoting it as regularly as you do everything else. Once you have your content ready to go, make sure you load it up to be published and promoted using your website and social media platforms as usual.
And as always, making sure you’re formatting your posts to keep your SEO optimized is just as important as the content itself. Not sure how to do that? Check out our post on that right here.
Is there a low effort content idea that I missed? Let me know in the comments below.