Earlier this morning, I had an epiphany. It isn’t profound. It won’t change the world. But it’s important to me and, like most “aha moments,” it’s brilliant in its simplicity. But before I get to that, allow me to back track a bit. Stay with me, I’ll keep it short.
I’ve always done things differently. It’s just in my DNA. When someone says, “Do it this way,” my immediate response is usually, “Why?” But I am like many other small-business owners in some ways. I, like others, have been having a tough time putting out a monthly newsletter on schedule, a weekly blog post on schedule, etc. Sometimes I get caught up with other tasks. Sometimes there’s nothing worth sharing. And sometimes life just happens — you know what I mean: your biggest client has a major crisis, everyone in your house gets the flu at the same time, or fill in the blank with your own life’s little surprises …
Sure, I could steal 15 minutes to slap some stuff together and press send, but you deserve better than that. And frankly, my reputation is built on delivering more than that. So the difficulty I faced was putting out content not only on time, but that lived up to the quality and standards I’ve set for myself and my audience.
My Content Production Epiphany
As I stared out the window this morning feeling guilty about having failed to deliver yet another monthly newsletter, my rebellious inner voice asked, “Why does the newsletter have to go out on an arbitrary, predetermined date? Why does content have to go out on such a strict schedule?” And I started to think, ya, who made up that rule? Better yet, since when have I followed the rules?
Doesn’t it make more sense to put out a newsletter when it’s ready? Or when there’s actually something worth sharing? I can’t remember or even imagine a time where I’ve said, “Geez, this content is really crappy, but thank God it came out on the 1st of the month because that’s what’s really important.”
Pardon my candor, but that’s just stupid.
Rather than promising to deliver something on the first of the month, or precisely 30 days after the last, or on Tuesdays — and then failing to deliver on that promise — I’ve made the executive decision to rebel against the clock. I’ve decided it’s in everyone’s best interest (yours and mine) to deliver quality content when it makes sense to do so.
See, I told you it was brilliant in its simplicity.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but…
Wouldn’t you rather see quality content from me periodically rather than mediocre content from me just because it’s Tuesday? And on the flip side of that, wouldn’t you rather I send you information about a massive algorithm update when it happens rather than three weeks later when I’ve “scheduled” the newsletter release? I know that’s what I’d want.
So no more delivery dates for me. No more broken promises and missed deadlines. And definitely no more guilt. Nope, now you can expect insightful, high-quality content when it’s ready, when it’s needed and, what the hell, maybe even when you least expect it!
I’d love to hear what you think about my new unscheduled approach to content production. I’d also love to know how you schedule (or don’t schedule) content. Tell me in the comments below, send me a tweet or email me directly.