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No matter how many YouTube videos or tutorials you consume, the first content you put out there will inevitably be poor. Poor quality work doesn’t attract viewers and therefore money. There are lots of reasons why your content sucks, and working out why will help you create better content going forward.
First I want to describe who this article is aimed at. Much like this website, this article is aimed at the working creative professional. A creative artist who is building a business from their creativity.
You should be at a professional level in your craft, and you will now be creating a website and social media to build your craft into a business.
This is something I have been doing for 10 years as a wedding photographer before moving on to this present business. But something different to what I did before is that the content I am now making includes putting myself in front of the camera.
My number one priority is putting out content that is of the highest quality. At this moment I believe that while the quality of the information I am delivering is the best; but is the quality of how it’s being delivered as good? No, not yet.
So in a way this article is a bit for myself, but I hope it helps you too!
Why Your Content Sucks
Let’s hit the nail on the head so we can quickly get into how to turn poor quality content around.
The reason your content sucks is one of two reasons:
1. You haven’t learnt everything to know about your craft.
2. You haven’t learnt how to use the tools to deliver that content to your audience.
Let’s break that down further.
1. You haven’t Learnt Your Craft
Artists never stop learning, but there is still a level of craft you should be able to produce before you can turn professional.
If you are not there yet you need to keep learning your craft before you seriously work on social media or your website.
Having a portfolio website is fine, as is uploading your work to social media. But creating a website with content including your portfolio, articles, tutorials and a shop should not be attempted before you have a certain level of craft.
The bulk of your time and effort should first be concentrated on improving your craft. A portfolio doesn’t take a great deal of effort. But articles, tutorials or products for a shop require a lot of work and someone who is an expert in their craft.
Work on yourself first.
2. You Haven’t Learnt the Tools to Deliver Your Content
This is where most of my audience are.
They are producing incredible creative work to their maximum potential. But they are failing to maximise the reach of their content using a website and social media.
I can list a few more specific reasons:
- You need to improve your video editing skills
- You need to improve SEO
- You need to improve your writing skills
- You need to improve your graphic design for product covers, YouTube thumbnails etc.
- You need to improve your camera presence
- You need to improve lighting
- You need to improve color grading
- You need to improve product design
- You need to learn more about content marketing
- You need to learn more about the algorithm
I could go on and on. But do you see yourself in any of the points in the above list?
For most artists who have spent a considerable amount of time to to get their craft to a professional level, they have never considered the points on this list.
Of course for some like a filmmaker, video editing will already be a skill, but writing might not be. For a writer, writing articles won’t be difficult, but video editing some YouTube will be new.
If you have a great art product it won’t make any money if you don’t know how to design the packaging, how to market it to the right audience, how to create the best marketing for the product using video or photo.
A great product on its own won’t sell itself. It needs these other elements to successfully sell.
How to Improve Your Content
If you’re looking for shortcuts you won’t find any here. There are no short cuts. Like anything worth building, businesses take hard work to be successful.
So let’s go over the strategy I follow to improve your content.
First I will assume you have a great product or your have great knowledge of a craft, and that you are in number 2 (haven’t learnt your tools) of my previous article section. If you are still in number 1, then go and learn your craft first!
For number 2 readers, read on:
Choose Where to Concentrate Your Effort
Don’t spread yourself too thin. That doesn’t mean you choose one platform and ignore the rest.
What you do is concentrate on one platform and once you have made good traction you can consider the next platform.
For me I built and developed my website first.
I learnt about SEO which also included speeding up the website to rank better in Google.
Then once I had an optimized website I then started with content. First articles. Fortunately I can already write good copy, and I am already proficient in Photoshop and Illustrator, so I could create good featured images and in article images.
So for website content you need two main skills: writing and image editing.
After almost a year building content on my website I chose the next platform to concentrate on as well as my website, YouTube.
YouTube required my image editing skills for thumbnails, but two new skills: video editing and talking to the camera.
Right now these are the two skills I am working on.
Practice, Practice, Practice
There are no short cuts. It’s all hard work and repetition.
You need to keep practicing over and over again. What I found is with each new iteration of content, I improve something small.
After a while the aggregate of these small increments in improvement add up to big leaps forward in growth.
This is the only way to grow.
If you can’t put in the hard work that is why your content sucks. Now you can concentrate on taking your business to the next level.
And here’s the truth. Of the all the people reading this article. 9 out of 10 readers will read and understand what it takes to improve their content but won’t ever follow through.
Only 1 out of 10 will put in the graft.
Make sure that’s you.
If you are just starting off check out my pillar article on How to ‘Start a Creative Business‘, in it I link out to multiple resources and articles to go further in depth on everything you need to be successful.
Also don’t forget to check out my creative business content in video format on YouTube.
Artist / Photographer / Videographer