Crafting an Effective Content Strategy [Authority Site Duel]

Content strategy is all over the internet.  It seems like bloggers collectively have written enough words on the topic to wrap the globe 10,000 times.

Rather than spew some of the same content creation “theory” that you likely already know (although I’ll be honest – there will be a bit of theory sprinkled in here), I’m just going to dive into telling you exactly what I’m doing for my authority site, and why I think it’s going to be effective.  

Getting into the Rhythm

When it comes to producing content for an authority site, I believe rhythm is important.  By rhythm, I mean having some kind of systematic frequency that you publish new posts.

I’m not going to tell you that you need to post three times per week or once per week – it almost doesn’t matter, as long as you’re being somewhat consistent and productive.  More content is usually better, but not at the cost of quality.

The real beauty in finding your rhythm is that you feel obligated to stick to it.  On this blog (My 4-Hour Workweek), for example, I’ve posted once per week almost every week for the past 2+ years.  It’s something I’ve gotten used to, but more importantly, it’s something regular readers are expecting.

On my authority site, I’m aiming for posting twice per week (typically Mondays and Wednesdays or Tuesdays and Thursdays).

Defining Your “Core” Content

The niche you’re in will help you define what type of content you’re going to be posting on a regular basis.  After all, if you just published articles about random topics, you likely wouldn’t be able to build a real following even though you might receive a lot of search engine traffic. Your core content will be what makes your site stand out.

For my site (Slow Carb Diet Experiments), the core content is the recipes. Although I will also write about dieting and fitness, the recipes are what will make my site stand out. There are literally thousands of blogs that can tell how you to lose weight and exercise, but my recipes are unique and written specifically for people on the slow carb diet.

I’ll be posting this content on a weekly basis.

Applying the “Income Report” to Other Niches

I doubt if Pat Flynn (from Smart Passive Income) invented the blogger income report, but he’s definitely the one who made it popular and now a widespread practice in the “make money online” community/blogosphere.

There’s something about the transparency of an income report that makes it so interesting to read.  I love reading other people’s income reports, even if they are new bloggers who are only earning a few dollars a month. There’s always some educational value when you can peak behind the curtain and see exactly how someone made their money (or why they didn’t make much money).

With that said, you obviously can’t do an income report in most niches, because it’s not relevant.  If someone comes to my site to read a recipe, they probably aren’t going to be interested in seeing how much my site made from Amazon’s affiliate program.

Get Creative

Here’s where we need to get creativeWhat kind of regular, relevant status or update report can you produce? 

For Slow Carb Diet Experiments, it was natural for me to document my progress with the slow carb diet.  This is the other big piece of my content strategy: weekly diet progress reports.

I document my weekly progress with all the relevant numbers (weight loss, changes in measurement, body fat %, etc.) along with writing about struggles I’m having or things that are working.

Uncover Potential Earning Opportunities

Much like with income reports, there’s an opportunity with these reports.  You’ll notice most bloggers’ income reports contain affiliate links, and these other reports don’t have to be much different.

On Slow Carb Diet Experiments, for example, as I write about my results and some of the exercises I’m doing, I include Amazon affiliate links to some of the equipment I use.  Nothing sells better than showing your actual results from using a tool or service, so take advantage of this if it’s applicable to your site.

There’s More to Like…

One more reason why I like having a regular report: It gives you regular content that you can produce almost effortlessly.  Your “core content” may be time consuming, requiring research or deep thought, but your “income report”-type content will practically write itself, as you report and comment on things that have already happened.

Okay, one last reason: People LOVE it.  Your readers, almost regardless of niche, crave real results.  Hopefully your authority site aims to solve a problem, and anytime you are solving a problem, you should take advantage of the opportunity to show real life case studies with data-filled progress reports.

Again, this won’t apply to all niches, but I’m willing to bet it applies to more than you think.

Conclusion

I’m confident that this two-prong approach (recipes and progress reports) will keep my site growing steadily for the foreseeable future.  I may need to tweak things here and there, but this is a formula I think I can stick with for a long time.

What’s your content strategy like? What are some examples of “income report”-type content for your niche? I’d love to hear about it in the comments,

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20 Responses to “Crafting an Effective Content Strategy [Authority Site Duel]”

  1. Good idea.

    I do the monthly income reports on my IM blog but hadn’t thought about a similar approach on my new authority site.

    Its in the fitness niche so I might have to start doing a weekly training and dieting update.

    Thanks!
    Joe recently posted… Market Samurai Half Price

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Thanks Joe – try it out, and see if you can make it a regular thing for the site.

    [Reply]

  2. Looks like you have thought it over and are making good choices about what you are doing. I’ll be looking forward to seeing what you accomplish with those sites!

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Thanks Mike, I appreciate it!

    [Reply]

  3. I really like the idea of taking the concept of income reports and applying them to other niches. If income reports are very popular in the make money online niche, why wouldn’t a similar “report” be popular in another niche?

    Publishing content on a regular basis is also something I need to work on a bit more. While on my blog I tend to publish around 1-2x per week, the days on which I publish vary which is probably not the best thing in the world.

    Thomas
    Thomas @ Mobile App Tycoon recently posted… Losing Weight and Gaining Profits: An Interview with Cica Gajic – Developer of DietPoint

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    I wouldn’t beat yourself up over posting on different days of the week, as long as there’s some kind of consistent pattern (such as posting 2x/week).

    I think the “income report” concept is highly underrated outside of the “make money online” realm. It’s definitely one way to make people want to subscribe and return to your site.

    [Reply]

  4. Hi, Eric! Great article. I like to learn from others’ experience. You were right, I know lots of things about content strategy, but reading how you do it, cleared some thoughts in my mind.
    Cristian Stan recently posted… Food Processor Reviews

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Thanks for the comment Christian!

    [Reply]

    Cristian Stan Reply:

    My pleasure Eric. Whenever I can, I add my two cents on my favorite bloggers’ articles.
    Cristian Stan recently posted… Best Wine Refrigerator/Cooler/Cellar Reviews 2012

    [Reply]

  5. Great ideas in this post! We also put out an income report once a month. We are considering changing it to a full expenses report also not many people do this out there so it would good way to attract new readers.
    Matt John Canty recently posted… Hiring Chinese Virtual Assistants

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Thanks Matt – Yes, posting expenses along with income would add a new layer of transparency that not many bloggers disclose. There’s probably a lot that can be learned from it too (by the readers).

    [Reply]

  6. Nice one Eric, keep it up. I will soon join you and Sunil.
    Theodore Nwangene recently posted… IT’S MY BIRTHDAY: Celebrate with Me

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Thanks Theodore, looking forward to you joining the duel!

    [Reply]

  7. I love the perseverance! I’m happy so far with my own progress, but I really look forward to my chance to jump in with both feet!
    Mike recently posted… Frugal and Intentional Living Update — Ooma VOIP / Digital Phone Review

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Thanks for the comment Mike!

    [Reply]

  8. Hi Eric,
    Great ideas in this post! We also put out an income report. I’ll be looking forward to seeing what you accomplish with those sites!
    Thanks
    Usman recently posted… Walthamstow Market: 5 Interesting Things to Know

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Hopefully the regular reports will lead to more regular traffic (and visitor loyalty) – I strongly believe it will.

    [Reply]

  9. Eric
    THe mind set of applying what has worked in one area and tweaking it to another market is great.

    Best of luck with your site!
    Jon recently posted… How I Setup an Authority Website With WordPress

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Hopefully it’ll work – thanks Jon!

    [Reply]

  10. Getting into the rhythm is important, it’s almost similar to forming a habit. Like what you mentioned, you create a blog post at least once a week.If only I can find that rhythm so that my personal blogs will be updated regularly.

    [Reply]

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