Perfect Content Is a Myth. 5 Reasons Why We Should Stop Trying to Create Perfect Content
Image by Dennis Larsen from Pixabay

The egg of a bird is closest to the perfect thing in the world. Astonishing, but true. I recently went through the journey Mr. Birkhead took me into the egg and the intricacies. You can read about it here

Why egg and content, you might ask? Trust me, once you read the article, your idea of perfection is about to take a pounding. 

With a mind numbing number of websites and multiple other factors, ranking on google is a lost cause. The competition is intense and overwhelming. Also, it gets drilled into our heads time and again about creating the perfect piece.

No wonder our natural response to the already lost fight is to produce high-quality content tending to perfection. 

The thing is- perfect content is a myth, and you should stop trying to create it. 

Certain professions need precision skills to deliver the results, but content creation isn’t one of them. Good luck if you are a pilot, surgeon, or engineer.

Isn’t this contradicting? After all, we hold ourselves to high standards since the notion and importance of high-quality content is paramount to success. 

In a way, it is contradicting, but it hovers around the borderline standard and chasing an impossible perfection. You may aim for high standards, but perfection is a myth when it comes to content creation.

Without further ado, let us put our heads into this tricky yet critical aspect of content creation.

Written content is better than a billion-dollar idea that stayed in our heads.

Why stop aiming for perfection when everything is imperfect and yet working?

#1- Content creation is not the one size fits all game

Had it been this simple, you and I would be acing the game like snipers taking the perfect shot. The irony is, it is not. If you read a lot and immerse yourself in every other article claiming a ticket to glory, you might have noticed a few things.

  • SEO 
  • Article length (1500-2000)
  • Backlinks
  • Keywords
  • Writing style

Sounds familiar. Right?

How is it working for you all?

I will be candid and put my hand up and say it isn’t. At least for now. However, writing for a while makes me ponder over a few things worth mentioning.

  • SEO- not an expert, and with changing times not sure it matters as much as it did 5-7 years back.
  • Article length (1500-2000)- you might need more or less. Who knows what works for everybody. I love reading an engaging 1200 word article. The short span of readers is a thing.

As far as backlinks, keywords, and writing style go, there’s enough wisdom available out in the market for you to shun the idea and focus on, well, writing. A few years back, you could cram your post with keywords and get the desired results. Not anymore.

The point is- you can learn and read about everything but with zero certainty on what works, it is advisable to focus on your art. Since nobody is sure, do what you do best. Write. 

#2- The only value lies in “here and now”

Imagine writing about how Ronaldo put aside the Coke can today. Chances are your piece will have the same destiny as some dissertation eating dust in the annals of a library. The world is here and now, and time is of utmost value to the content.

Writing some novel or a book is a different ball game; publishing a 1200-2000 words post is another play. You can create your characters and take artistic liberty. You can experiment with the overall flow of the novel and make multiple changes and tweak as you like.

When it comes to a blog post or an article, time is of the essence. Publishing elaborate blog posts or a short article is an easy task with a current view of the world around you. Moreover, trying to perfect a piece with all the standard protocols to produce near-perfect copy risks being outdated. A relevant and quick post with a few unnoticeable errors provides immediate value to the readers without sulking for perfection.

Tom Kerkhof, global head of social media at Navico puts a relevant thought.

“There is only one perfect minute where you can post. If you don’t do it then, because it isn’t perfect enough, you’ll lose half of your reach just because someone else will put it up or the news is already disappearing. Typically, the only value lies in the fact that it is “here and now.”

#3- Perfection is like pleasing everyone; it never happens

I like classic content, with an engaging storyline, anecdotes, and some quotes thrown into the mix. Once I forwarded one of my pieces to a few friends who read. Some loved it, while others suggested adding more visual impact to make it look better.

Imagine the difference of opinion million of readers will have. Perfection is always subjective, and the idea varies for each. There is no template and recipe to get the perfect match. 

The ideal way is to write to the best of your abilities, working out the nuances during this process. Someone would love a classic piece, and others a visual delight. You can never be sure of the set pattern that works for a larger audience. Readers have their way on this. Few readers may not even recognize your grammatical errors or subtle spelling mistakes, while others might rip you apart over these errors.

The idea is to produce good quality content with basic hygiene and keep working on your skills. Always focus on the impact and value it brings to the reader rather than perfection. 

As John Jantsch, an American business theorist said.

“Your impact is not measured by what you do but by what happens to the other people when you do it.”

#4- Regular readers aren’t professors of the English language

Neither everybody is a grammar, syntax, and punctuation expert. Most of what you write is for people like you and me. By you and me, I mean regular readers before you take offense and thrash me. We write for various platforms and our blogs.

Readers look for value and takeaways. Something they can resonate with and apply in their lives. 

Not to suggest you can write trash and get away with it. Content is about delivering value and adding something valuable to some ongoing issue or dilemma of the reader. It may not be the best content ever, but good enough for a reader to relate. 

The majority of what we read today is by writers who are technically not qualified writers. That is to say- not everybody has a writing pedigree or a degree to go with, but they write quality content. Their pedigree is the learning accumulated throughout a process of trial and error.

The art of storytelling and connecting with readers separates them from many professors or learned people.

Write and learn, for you are not here to present some literature marvel to old coughing professors sitting on rocking chairs judging you.

Keep working on your grammar and basic skills, but do not let the fear of judgment stop you from producing content.

Perfect grammar has nothing to do with great storytelling. To learn more about our innate grammar issues in writing, read The Language Instinct by Steven Pinker.

#5- Imperfection is real

Acceptance is critical to success in any venture you embark on, and content creation is no different. We need to accept the imperfections as a part of this grueling process. While we can not eliminate them in their entirety, our content improves gradually.

Imperfections are everywhere. Nothing grows without embracing our mistakes and making amends as we move forward.

The idea of perfection is delusional, resulting in weariness. It is the imperfection that brings out the honest stories. Once we embrace it, we work on our creativity and skills. Similar to life, where each has its shortcomings, content is an art amalgamating imperfections.

Why should we fear perfection when we are never going to reach it?

“Your imperfections are not inadequacies; they remind us that we are in this together.”

― Brené Brown

In conclusion

When it comes to content, done is better than perfection. Striving for perfect content holds you back and your creative instincts. The process of content creation is on-the-job learning and improves while you are at it. Good, high-quality content will provide value in terms of substance to its readers. It may not be error-free, but sufficient to engage the readers.

Perfect content is a myth, but strive to make it better every day.

References

Breton, G. (2019, August 20). Why The Perfect Piece of Content Doesn’t Exist. Retrieved from https://jessicathiefels.com/blog/perfect-content-doesnt-exist/

Haun, M. (2019, August 20). 5 reasons why you should stop trying to create perfect content. Retrieved from https://veracontent.com/mix/stop-trying-create-perfect-content/