Why You Should Always Write What You Know (And Love)

under Content Strategy.


I'd like to start off today with a little thought exercise. I want you all to imagine you're attending a keynote presentation - the topic doesn't really matter. The keynote speaker is one of the most enthusiastic, energetic presenters you've ever laid eyes on. They hold their audience's rapt attention with every word they utter and every gesture they make; their eyes sparkle with love for their job even as they hold an entire conference hall under their spell.

Next, I want you to imagine another, different speaker. This one's the polar opposite of the guy who was just up there. He speaks in a passive, apathetic voice; a sleep-inducing monotone. His gestures are sluggardly; his body language isn't all there and he stumbles over even basic concepts. Before long, people begin to check out; when he leaves the stage, they applaud more out of relief that he's gone than appreciation of his keynote.

Now, ask yourself - what's the difference between the two?

Content Creation: A Love Story

The answer is quite simple: passion. The first speaker loved his topic, and positively glowed with joy when he talked about it. Everybody loved him, and his keynote was remembered for years to come.

By contrast, the other speaker simply didn't care. Maybe his topic bored him, or perhaps he simply didn't understand what he was supposed to be presenting on. Either way, the end result was (predictably) a total slog.

So...what does all this have to do with content creation?

Quite a lot, actually. Writers - and really, any content creators - need to hold themselves to the same standards as a keynote presenter. They need to know what they're talking about; more importantly, they need to actually care about it.

See, your audience is actually incredibly astute when it comes to picking up apathy and uncertainty. If you manage to convince them that you don't really care about your subject matter - or worse, that you don't fully understand it - then they're simply going to move on and seek out someone who does. An indifferent author is no fun to read, just the same as an indifferent speaker is no fun to listen to.

Write What You Love, And Love What You Know

Writing has never really felt like work to me. While some people might struggle just to get a few words out on the page, I've always been able to put down my thoughts with virtually no effort - and I've always loved every minute of the writing process, to boot. I've been told that passion - that love for my craft - comes across in my work.

I don't doubt that it does.

Take from this what you will. I don't profess to be a marketing expert. I don't claim to know everything there is about optimization, nor do I believe myself some sort of magnificent guru whose advice can turn you into a content creation dynamo overnight. I'm just a guy who loves writing.

Can't you tell?

Image credit: budibudz