So let me start out by saying that I love writing. I really do, there’s nothing like getting your thoughts out on paper (scratch that, who uses paper anymore?). Somewhere that they stick before they fly out of your head because the entrepreneurial “bright-shiny-object-syndrome” kicks in. If you’re like me, then your attention gets yanked away every time something exciting comes along. Like when you get 100 likes on your Instagram photo.
But when you’re busy trying to build your brand, it’s tough to find the time to sit down and spill your golden thoughts all over your keyboard. Or if you haven’t yet dove into entrepreneurship, you probably have limited time to spend writing blog posts to grow your brand. You spend time with your family, you have to pay bills and you probably spend hours every week driving to your dead end job. And even when you have established your brand, if you’re anything like me, you’re in your car quite a bit traveling to conferences, vacations and wherever puts a smile on my face.
But there is a serious dilemma of wanting (needing) to get great content out to your fans and followers – while also maintaining a personal and professional travel schedule.
So how can you pump out great content while driving in a car for 2 hours a day?
When I’m traveling with someone, I’m usually trying to chat their ear off. But, if I’m not engaged in conversation with somebody in the passenger seat, chances are I’m learning something by listening to a podcast, or dreaming up new ideas.
If I’m traveling alone however, I have a process that I use to get a good amount of work done fairly easily. If I’m on a long trip I can usually bang out two or three blog posts that are well over 2000 words.
“Say what?” you ask.
How the heck do you write blog posts in the car?
And get ready for the magic, because I’m about to reveal my process.
The first phase of the trip begins with information gathering. Now I do this a couple of different ways. Number one, I have a long list of podcast that I follow, like Entrepreneur On Fire, Michael Hyatt’s “This Is Your Life”, and Pat Flynn’s “Smart Passive Income”. So what I’ll do is I’ll start catching up on episodes that I haven’t heard yet, it gets my brain churning. Sometimes I listen to just one podcast and it will give me an idea, then I’ll branch off of that. Sometimes I listen to several podcasts for about an hour, and I come up with a completely unique idea that’s inspired by everything I’ve heard.
Another part of my information gathering phase, is a pretty cool “life hack” if I do say so myself. First off, I use an app called Pocket. Pocket is a great resource that allows you to copy the link of a webpage that you’d like to read later and paste it into your “pocket”, so that you can read it at a later time. Another great resource to use is Evernote.
So I start out by quickly scrolling through blog post that I haven’t read yet (By the way, I do this either before I leave, or at a restaurant – for everyone out there freaking out that I’m doing it while driving). Then because you can’t read a blog post on your phone, in the car, while driving (it’s just not friggin safe) I’ll use an app called Text To Speech. Text To Speech is a free app that allows you to paste text into the app and then it will read it back to you in a somewhat robotic voice. So in essence I’m listening to a podcast by the Terminator. But it gets the job done!
Once I’ve completed my information gathering, or brainstorming – I’m ready to get my ideas out of my head and onto something a little bit more concrete. Like my phone.
So I simply open up my note app on my iPhone. From there I’ll hit the talk to text button, and begin talking. I’ll talk like I’m telling a story about the topic of choice. It comes out pretty rough on talk to text, but the basic ideas are down and it allows me to go back later and edit. Now with the iPhone, talk to text last for about 30 seconds. I’m not really sure about that number, as I don’t try to time it while I’m talking and driving – again, dangerous – but it’s pretty close. It makes a little “ding” when it stops recording, and because I hover my finger over the record button all I do is press it again when I hear the ding without even looking.
This is actually way more efficient for me then writing. Because I’m a talker, I can convey an idea by speaking it much better than I can by writing it. Plus I always seem to get sucked into editing while writing which takes FOREVER! So my blog posts that I write via talk to text in the car, and I being far longer than if I were to write them. Because sometimes they are so long they could be a short novel, I get multiple blog posts out of just one topic. This is also pretty nice because now I have content for future posting.
Then I simply label it as a new blog post, and either leave it in my notepad for later when I want to go back and edit it; or I’ll email it to myself when i stop the car, so that I don’t forget about it.
With this method not only can you get way more blog posts written in a shorter period of time, but you often come up with ideas that you might not of thought about when you’re trying to edit as your writing.
So as long as you can curb yourself from looking down, or going back and correcting momentary lapses in proper English, it’s a great way to be productive while you’re driving.
Remember at this point it’s just word vomit into your phone, you can go back and correct it later so eyes on the road and happy “talk to texting”.
Disclaimer: I don’t condone texting and driving so if you can’t just talk freely without editing, DON’T DO IT!