Step 1: Pick a medium

You want to do content creation, or learn to do it, and you don’t know what to start with? In this article, you’ll learn about three possible starting points and get guidance on choosing one.

How to start content creation

A blog, a podcast, and a YouTube channel – many content creators have all of these and make it look easy. But in reality, being active and successful on multiple platforms is a lot of work.

On top of that, there’s social media. And your newsletter. And the free e-book or crash course to get people to sign up for your newsletter – after all, the goal is to build an audience, right?

Right. And it’s important to have a goal in mind. But it’s just as important to get off to a good start. How do you do that? The answer is surprisingly simple, and – well – since a picture is worth a thousand words…

An engine as symbol for how to start content creation

What do you see here? A train, exactly. The more cars, the more passengers. And at the head, an engine pulling the whole thing. One engine. This image can be perfectly applied to content creation.

📍 Jim Woods gave me the idea of a “content train”. Check out his article How Do You Become A Content Creation Machine? via Medium.

In the case of content creation, your engine is the one medium in which you feel most comfortable. A medium that you start with. One that you can express yourself naturally in. Maybe one that remains your primary medium, but that doesn’t have to be.

The important thing is to start with one first, rather than launching everything right away.

You can’t create a bunch of engines as you start out: just one. You’ll get confused and lose momentum. You’ll likely get overwhelmed too. […] Having a bunch of priorities means you don’t have a priority.

Jim Woods (Medium)

Essentially, there are three mediums to choose from: audio, video and text only.

Three mediums · one choice

I write “text only” because audio or video posts often involve scripts in production, so they also involve text.

Still, some prefer to leave it at a rough script or speak entirely off the cuff, in front of a mic, some even on camera. Others feel most comfortable just staying behind the keyboard and tweaking their sentences. 🧑‍💻

There’s no wrong or right in choosing your medium. What matters is that you choose one. You can shift focus later. You’ll definitely add more media later. As a content creator, you’re going to go multimedia one way or another – but the path to that starts with a single medium. Now, without overthinking it, what would be your choice?

Personal approach

For me, it was text. I’ve always loved to write, and I’ve always written a lot. Even as a kid, I wrote notebooks full of stories about rabbits and their adventures.

As soon as the Internet came along, I discovered chats and e-mails as the best form of communication for me, always feeling most comfortable with them.

And then it seemed an obvious thought to me to keep some kind of online diary, those things that were eventually called blogs.

Ways to start content creation

Today, when it comes to content creation, the choice of medium goes hand in hand with a certain form of medium – and thus, a certain way to start content creation.

If you want text, you want to write a blog.

If you want audio, you want to produce a podcast.

And if you want video, you want to make web videos.

Sure, there are other options, but to keep things simple for now, we’ll focus here on these main three forms of content creation.

If you already have a lot of experience with a medium, it’s only natural to start with that and build on that experience.

And likewise, if one of these forms of medium particularly excites you and you’re eager to learn it, use this creative enthusiasm, build on that.

So, what media form do you choose as your engine? If you already know, then on to…

Okay, what if the choice is anything but simple and intuitive? What if you don’t really have experience with any medium? Don’t worry, each of them can be learned. But what to start with?

No experience? Start with this.

There’s no question that podcasts and videos are trending big time and are becoming increasingly important as content types.

But for beginners with no experience, I would always recommend starting with text. That is, starting a blog. It’s relatively easy, requires way less tech and skill – and is still in high demand.

Blogging has been around for as long as the internet has, but the practice has become more sophisticated over the years […]. Today’s blogs are relevant, high-quality, and well-written pieces about topics that your audience finds interesting, so they can be a great tool for building authority, trust, and relationships […].

Digital Marketing Institute

Although I’ve also loved handling cameras and making movies since I was a teenager, and my focus as a content creator is now clearly on YouTube, text has always been the go-to medium for me to start with. My creative work in general and every creative project in itself.

I’ve always published every video script as a blog post as well, and get a lot of my traffic via blog – with steady growth, over the years. Most people with requests for collaborations have been to my blog first, to get to know me better.

Learning to blog pays off, and I’m happy to teach you the basic skill.

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