Deciding which type of content to use

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Weekday Wisdom, Episode 96

An interview with Sarah Schwab, Part 3

How do you decide what kind of content — text, audio, video, image — to use in any given situation? In today’s episode, Sarah Schwab, the Content Creation Coach, talks about two different types of content and their purpose.

Sarah Schwab on the Weekday Wisdom with Carma Spence, Part 3

CARMA SPENCE: There’s all different kinds of content you can create. And it seems to be exponentially growing now that video is so easy to create. There’s still audio, and written, and pictures, and info-grams. How does someone decide what is the best kind of content to provide a particular piece of information?

SARAH SCHWAB: There’s a couple of things involved here. And I’m going to answer this in two different ways. I think the core of your question is about format. Is it going to be a video? Is it going to be an article? Is it going to be written? Maybe it’s a PDF. What is it?

Content, honestly, really only comes in two categories. It seems like a lot of stuff out there, but it’s all either written or spoken. It’s writing and it’s speaking. And these are skills. And that’s a big piece of what I do. But, from there, decide which of those is best for your voice.

Don’t go in front of a video camera if you’re super uncomfortable with that. If you’re a really good writer, then start with writing. We can get to the video thing eventually, but do what is the format that is the best fit for you and your skills to start with.

But besides that, there’s also a strategic element in making that decision. I talk about three different types of content. I’ll break down two of them right now, which is nurturing content and catalyst content.

Nurturing content is consistent content. It’s free. And you’re creating it on a regular basis. This can look like your blog, if you’re posting blog articles regularly. Doing a podcast, putting out audios, building that podcast audience. People do it with videos on their YouTube channel and putting those on their blog. And you’re sending in your newsletter. You’re getting it in front of as many people as you can. Driving traffic. Building awareness. Building visibility. That’s nurturing content.

Nurturing content has fewer format options, to be perfectly honest with you. I kind of discovered what they are. If you’re going to be creating this every week, it’s usually going to be a shortish video, an audio or an article. That’s kind of it for your nurturing content. So you need to choose what that’s going to look like and roll with it.

Catalyst content has a lot more options. Catalyst content you create one time and it engages people. It helps you capture your leads. This is where people have to give you their contact information in order to download the thing, or in order to attend the webinar, or register for the event, or whatever that is.

And so, with catalyst content, you can take written and spoken formats and do all sorts of exciting things. You can create a series, a challenge, or a teleseminar. You can have guests and partnerships. You can, blend a video with a worksheet. There’s just infinite possibilities.

And so, the answer to what your catalyst content piece should be or what form it should take? Its a process I love doing with people and it kind of depends on your audience and the information you want to share with them, as well as the end result you want to create. So, I don’t know if that answers your question but I hope it gives people some clarity in terms of what they’re looking at.

CS: I know you talk about those two types in the book, Content That Dances. So, I was actually going to ask you about that when I got to asking you questions about the book. But I’m still a little unclear on catalyst. It sounds like catalyst content is product, whether it’s a free product or a purchase. But catalyst to me — because I have a background in biology — is it makes a reaction happen faster.

SS: Oh, I like that. Interesting. Yes, it definitely causes a reaction. It causes an action for another person. So that’s that opt-in. So, if someone can read a blog article and come across it and see it and leave and you never know that they saw it. You don’t know who they are. You can’t engage with them further. With catalyst content, it requires that action.

Now my definition of catalyst content is it’s still free. It does not cost money. There’s another category of content, the third category called money making content, that costs money. And that gets us into the realm of things like books, online courses, online training, virtual group programs. Things where people pay money to learn content from you. So that’s its own separate category. But with catalyst, it’s still free. It’s still really a marketing tool to generate leads and share value and start that relationship right. Give them something. Teach them something. And then engage with them.

So, here’s one other way to think about catalyst content. Catalyst content is at the top of a funnel. It’s promotional. And it’s that thing you’re offering them, you’re giving it to them, you’re fulfilling that promise, but then you’re also able to follow up and maybe have a follow up sequence put them through the rest of that funnel.


In tomorrow’s episode, Sarah will answer the next question:

Do you have a favorite type of content that you favor for yourself? And for your clients? Because those might be two different things.

I hope you enjoy today’s episode and that it gave you some good food for thought and maybe even some information that you could take some action on. Remember all this information I’m providing news to help you:

Think outside the box.
Spread your wings and fly.
Because I really believe in you.
You — yes you right there — are capable of more than you know.

You just need to believe in yourself and start taking baby action steps toward your goals.

Please post a comment below If you liked this video, please give it a thumbs up on YouTube and let me know in a comment below. And I’ll see you in the next video.

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About the author

Carma Spence, The Own Your Awesome Mentor, is fiercely committed to guiding women to Owning their Awesome and turning it into a profitable business. She is masterful at helping her clients see what is possible for them and supporting them on the journey from where they are to where they want to be, releasing the Mind Goblins of self-doubt, self-sabotage and second-guessing that keep them stuck.

With 20+ years experience in marketing communications and public relations, natural intuitive skills and certification in using some of the most effective transformational coaching tools available, Carma’s mission and commitment is to unleash the inner power every woman entrepreneur possesses so they can boldly go out into the world, transforming the fabric of people’s lives in meaningful and positive ways.

You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.