How I Plan and Create my Content (Instagram Reels & YouTube workflow)
Today, I’m going to walk you through my entire content creation process. From how I ideate, how I consistently come up with ideas, right through to the creation process.
One thing I do just want to mention, however, is that every single person is going to have a different style that works for them, I don’t want to share this with you and you to take away the idea that this is going to be the be all and end all of your content creation success. I want to share with you my process, or maybe you can take little elements out of what I do to stay productive and consistent with my content creation. But, if this doesn’t fit for you don’t feel like a failure. Just keep trying different things. Keep trying different iterations until you find a system and a workflow that works for you.
The most important thing is that you’re happy and you’re consistent, and that you’re getting content out that you enjoy creating.
So the biggest question that I get around content creation is how do you always come up with ideas. And then on the piggyback of that, a lot of people ask me how I separate my ideas from platform to platform. So I want to talk about those two things.
CONSTANTLY TAKE NOTES
First, and very practically, I always have a running list of ideas on my Notes app on my phone. And this comes from every time I have a conversation with someone about business or mindset, every time I have a client call and they ask me a question and we go deep into a conversation, if I see something that somebody else has said on the internet, and I either agree or disagree. I’m constantly on the lookout for ideas that are relevant to the content that I create here on the internet. You know, this may come with time. I feel like I have such a good perspective on my own creative process. Such a good perspective on my mission and what I’m trying to achieve in the world that pretty much everything could be content that I create.
And whenever those little thoughts pop into my mind, “Oh, I could turn this into a piece of content”, I simply write the scenario down, and then I’ll talk about it at a later date.
Constantly making your life the content is a really great way to never run out of things to say. I will mention, however, a big part of this particular thing working comes from you being truly passionate about the niche that you’ve chosen.
You know, if you don’t have that much of an interest in your niche, trying to constantly think about it and turn so many of the interactions that you have in life into pieces of content, it’s going to be boring, it’s going to drain you. Whereas when you truly do enjoy what it is that you speak about every time you’re learning, speaking, conversating and therefore generating ideas, it’s going to be an enjoyable process.
So I thoroughly enjoy talking about business mindset, psychology, confidence, self-love, and all of these things. So when I’m constantly thinking of pieces of content, in my day to day life, I’m actually having a good time doing it. But very practically writing things down on your Notes app is the first thing that you can do.
MAKE YOUR LIFE THE CONTENT
So a lot of the times when I’m creating content, I’m basically just telling stories of things that are happening in my life. So many of the YouTube videos that you see here are examples of things that I’m thinking about because they’re going on in my life.
I think when I’ve in the past just tried to find content ideas. You know, I’ve gone on to YouTube and searched in the YouTube search bar or I’ve gone on to Pinterest like these can work sometimes, but a lot of the time, the most potent pieces of content are the ones that are truly live and they’re a part of my own experience, because I will speak about them so much more connectedly and passionately because I’m in it, I’m in the thick of it, or I’ve just come out the other side of that transformation. My life is the content.
Yes, I’m ideating based on conversations and things that are going on, but also what’s going on with me is generally the content that you see.
DECIDE WHICH PLATFORM TO POST YOUR IDEAS ON
How do I determine where to actually put the content? How do you actually take these ideas and determine where to put them on the internet? For me, I’ve got a very simple process.
Each of those individual features have their own intention:
YouTube, for example, is the platform where I will teach, I usually teach in a listicle format to help you learn about a particular concept. So, right now, I’m teaching you how to plan and create content where I have a topic that is very teaching that will sit on my YouTube channel.
My podcast is dedicated to conversations and interviews. So that’s a pretty easy one.
On Instagram, my stories are very much me documenting what is literally going on in my mind at that moment. It’s me documenting my life as a successful entrepreneur. And as someone who’s going through transformations, you know, mindset work, all the things that I teach, I’m showcasing that through my story. My feed is another place that I teach, but maybe the content isn’t as long as it would be as if it’s going to sit here on YouTube, maybe it’s just more of a quick idea, or thought or one or two tips versus maybe a list of five.
And my reels are just an opportunity for me to entertain, they’re an opportunity for me to poke fun at different things in my industry, or things that I find silly or just to make people laugh. But still under the category of business and mindset.
Knowing that each individual feature has its own purpose is how I differentiate with my content ideas. If I look at one of these ideas, and I’m like, hmm, that really needs me to go through and teach step by step, of course, I’m going to put it on my YouTube channel. Whereas if I’m like, I could probably teach this in one minute, I’m going to maybe put it in a feed post or maybe even talk about it in my stories.
Understanding each of the individual platforms is a really great way to not only come up with content ideas but when you do come up with those content ideas, knowing where to put them.
2. HAVE A LOOSE CONTENT CALENDAR
The second step of how I plan and create my content is by having a very loose content calendar. And again, this is the part that works for me, maybe it’s not gonna work for you, a lot of people will do this in different ways.
I am what I like to call an intuitive content creator, meaning that like I said, a lot of the time I’m creating based on what is actually happening for me in that moment, or in that day or in that week, I find it very difficult to plan very far in advance.
But I still want to focus on consistency. Because consistency truly is key when it comes to content creation. If you’re gonna upload to YouTube, do it at the same time and the same day each week, train your audience when they can expect to hear from you because they’ll give you that surge of initial viewership, which will help boost the visibility of that piece of content.
What I like to do is rather than let’s say sitting down at the start of the month and planning on the 15th, I’m going to create a video about this. And on this day, I’m going to talk about this on my stories…I don’t like to go that far into the planning of my content. I like it to still be quite intuitive. And maybe you think of an idea, and I’ll write it out and I’ll schedule it out to go out the next day on Instagram.
But I do have a content calendar, which I try my hardest to stick to. In my most recent video, I actually talked about one of the reasons I’m so happy is because I have low expectations, but high standards. This is a perfect example of that. p>
This is the standard that I’ve set for myself, but I don’t feel bad if I don’t stick to it for some reason or another throughout the week. I’m trying to strive to create this much content, but when I don’t, I’m not gonna feel any type of way about that outcome.
This is the calendar that I try to stick to so you know, creating consistent stories, reels, my YouTube videos, eventually I will bring my podcast back as well. But that might work for you to just rather than actually sit down at the start of every week or every month and plan out exactly what pieces of content you’re going to create. Just having a target like a bull’s eye that you’re trying to aim for.
My little tip is the best place to stay the most consistent is on your rich content platform. So in your podcast or your YouTube channel, Instagram and stuff, it’s easier to be a little bit more flexible.
3. CREATE A WORKFLOW
Recently, one of my clients was struggling to stay consistent with her YouTube videos. I said to her, you need to make this as simple of a process as possible. We sat down and we came up with a YouTube workflow.
So I’ve got the ideating process, I know when I’m going to post and then the next part of it is knowing exactly how to bring a piece of content to life. You want to have a checklist, a step by step process for creating whatever pieces of content you’re going to create.
The reason why this is so helpful is that the more militant you can be with your process, the more creative space you actually have. And I know that seems backwards, you would think the flowier you are the more creative freedom but structure actually births creativity. If someone was trying to write a book saying, “Oh, right, when I feel like it,” I guarantee it’s going to take them so much longer to actually read that book than if they said, “I’m going to sit down and I’m going to write for three hours, every single morning, I’m just going to sit at my computer, I’m just going to write whatever comes up”.
When you have a system and a process for your content creation, it makes it a lot easier to bring a piece of content to life.
The goal of this is really just to take the guesswork out of it. I mean, the next step beyond this as well would be scheduling and times in your calendar to actually checkmark these things off. At the bare minimum, having a checklist and having a workflow for developing a piece of content will allow you more creative freedom.
4. CREATE THE CONTENT
So first of all, my YouTube videos are very systemized. You know, what I do is I actually come up with my content ideas based on those notes that I have been taking in my phone, I will then come up with a loose structure for my videos, it’s not so much a script as it is a kind of checklist.
Most of my videos, if you haven’t noticed, are created in a listicle format. So it’ll be like this is step one, step two, step three, step four. I come up with what I’m going to speak about, then I sit down and I film through each of the individual points.
And then it goes into the editing phase. So I edit my videos, upload them to YouTube, and then turn them into a blog post.
It doesn’t need to be this huge, overly complicated thing.
I think the biggest thing is just making sure that you have the ideas there and that you’re being as organized as possible. Your content can be something that you actually have a lot of fun with and that you really enjoy. The biggest thing is having those systems in place. Taking the guesswork out.
If you just sit down, stare at a blank page, and have no structure to your process. Of course, it’s going to feel overwhelming. And of course, you’re going to procrastinate.
Make it as methodical and as systemized as possible. And don’t give yourself any space to weasel out of the process.
HOW I MAKE MY REELS
I know a lot of people still find them extremely elusive and intimidating but just like with YouTube, my goal here is to make it as simple as possible for you.
I spend a lot of time actually watching reels. So I am constantly scrolling through that reels feed and every time I see something that resonates with me, or that I think is funny, or that I think that I could create myself, I just save that reel.
Then when I’m in the mood to film something, I’ll go into that saved section and I will just try to come up with ideas that are unique to my niche based on the things that I have saved.
I’ll memorize the script or moves for the soundbite I’m imitating to the best of my ability and then I will simply just record it within Instagram.
Keep it simple! I think a lot of people are doing these crazy transitions, but when it comes to reels, the best thing to do is just get started with them. Get started with the process. Come up with your own workflow and be consistent with it.
The biggest thing I wanted to share today was how simple content creation can be. But also how consistency is more important than anything. I’m not saying you have to be on social media every single day creating content, you don’t have to do that. And anyone tells you that you do they’re lying. But consistency is incredibly important. Make it as easy as you possibly can. Come up with a plan for how you can create that, constantly be generating ideas, make sure you’re passionate about what you speak about and content creation can actually be a lot of fun.
It doesn’t need to be this super overwhelming thing. It can be something that you thoroughly enjoy doing.
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