When your content becomes stale Larry Kim suggests going ‘off-topic’ for a while. He advocates 80% of your focus on your core area and 20% on other topics you’re interested in but don’t link directly to your niche.
Why do this?
Well the reason is it can get a bit boring recycling the same topics over and over. Perhaps you have said everything you’re going to say on a particular topic and are stuck for creative ways to approach the subject now.
Going off topic can be energising. It can give you back a bit of spark to rethink your core topics again with fresher eyes.
Think of going off-topic as you would when you are on a holiday. You know how good you feel after a rest and break from your day to day routine, and the same thing applies for your content. Keep it fresh by having a break from what you normally write about.
The point of going off-topic too is to inject some more of your personality into your content. It could be that it your business as usual approach is becoming a bit tired. Thinking about other topics might be the fuel you need to restart your content engine and when you come back to your niche area you can inject some of that fuel there too.
Content isn’t meant to be boring. And creating content isn’t meant to be boring to do either. Content creation is a creative exercise and like all creative pursuits they can have periods of lack lustre output. The key to overcome these periods is to be able to channel new inspiration or know how to pull yourself out of a creative funk. I see the off-topic idea as a creative rescue idea. One to apply when the malaise starts to set in and one when you need to dig deep to produce some worthy content.
The key to going off-topic is to have a range of ideas that you’re passionate about and write about them. These ‘other’ topics can be your alter-ego but not so strange or removed from your niche areas to cause reader confusion. That’s not the point. The off-topics offer you the ability to deviate by degrees, not undertake wild u-turns. Keep the idea of exploring your off-topic areas handy the next time you hit a creative wall.