Make Content Difficult Again

I don't do easy. Working with me isn't meant to be easy.

As with anything, the first few days are the most accessible (which is different from "easy"). These are the basics, the fundamentals. It is tempting to want to fly through the fundamentals to get on to the things that are more advanced. Trouble is, the advanced stuff is frustrating and more difficult (duh) and only gets "easier" when you master the fundamentals.

I don't do easy. I care too much about your development to make any part of this easy.

If you want my "fast and easy," here it is:

Write, every day. Use writing as an exploratory and meditative tool. Write as though you will never publish what you put down. Take notice of what you write, what you see, and how the world changes around you.

That's it, that's all I offer.

It only seems simple because every word makes sense - fundamental. Now, combine each sentence in a new combination and you're looking at something unprecedented. I work with clients to introduce chaos. I work with them to get out of the mud and start creating the kind of messaging that sets them aside from their competition. This isn't just copywriting; we're building an entirely new world. It's something anyone can do on their own, but most will never read beyond the first chapter.

The instructions are simple, but the work is difficult. I could give it all away in quick, digestible content that has a nifty hook and is over in 15-seconds - but I would be lying to you. I don't want the kind of audience who gets wrapped up in how clever it all seems, because those aren't my people. My people are the ones who see the endless task in front of them and are willing to jump in.

And I think you need the same. You, your brand, your coaching or mentoring service, your consulting, whatever - the content you make for your audience needs to be difficult. Easy content brings in the easy views. This is the stuff that gins up your metrics and tickles the taint of your ego. It's positive pixels, none of it really exists.


Difficult content brings real clients who give a shit about making a change.

This was the thesis behind The End of Endless Content - the thesis that changed my entire business.

Put it to you this way: no one picks up a thousand-page book thinking it will be an easy read. A thousand pages says this isn't their first rodeo. A thousand pages is a commitment of time and energy - a thousand pages means late nights reading and afternoons without the TV on.

Meanwhile, those supermarket beach reads are consumed quickly and loaded with sand and sunscreen before getting swallowed up by the next high tide. One book will stay with the reader forever - on their shelf or in their heart - and the other is just compost-in-waiting.

I believe most elementary math teachers are the "one chapter ahead" kind of teachers. The ones who teach directly from the board-issued teacher guides. No surprises, nothing new. Anyone can teach the basics. The basics are all over YouTube.

The more time you spend on thinking and creating for the higher-level ideas, the better you get at teaching and sharing the whole package. Not everyone can afford to enroll in a 300-level course, so give them something to chew on.


Of course, I get the temptation that comes with following trends. Doing the dances and telling the little jokes. Trending audio, fads, and hot takes are all easy ways to jump in on a conversation. The audience who needs you will find you, trending or not. This isn't about easy content; this is about search-and-findability.

You only think you want millions of followers. Chances are, you may only be capable of helping ten people a year. Better yet, maybe you only help a dozen people over the span of your career. This isn't about "finding the right niche," it's about doing the best work in the most honest way possible.


You and your difficult content is a reminder that there is a reason they haven't done the thing they wanted to do. The instructions are everywhere. Easy content is all over the place. What they need is a swift kick up the backside. Of course, everyone wants their answer in the form of a few bitter gelcaps to take every eight hours, but what they need is a 40-grit suppository. Not easy, kind of painful, and once installed it ain't going anywhere.


At the end of everything, you're the one they are working with. There may be a dozen doctors in town, but you're the only one with warm enough hands to get close to your audience. You can spend years trying to "narrow down your niche," to a hyper specific topic. Or, you start to realize that you are the niche. People want to work with you because of the way you run your ship.

A big part of this idea is in how you treat your time. Your value needs to match how difficult it is to work with you. The thing you offer the world needs to be a huge challenge to your audience - the kind of thing that is life-changing work. Easy implies fast and accessible. Instead, challenge the fuck out of your client. Make them work hard at working with you. This is the only way you can help them get what they truly need, versus just settling for what they think they want.

What you do for a living, in your niche, is difficult and valuable.

At least, it should be. If it's not, level up and make it so. It should not be easy to work with you. Whatever you're offering to the world needs to be a challenge to the end user. Easy implies fast results. Instead, take the time to challenge the hell out of your client so they get what they need, instead of what they think they want.


This is a call for you to change. Change brings results.

If you like big social numbers and lots of shares and likes and little emoji comments, then difficult content is not for you. I will leave you to burn your time entertaining the masses. For everyone else: this takes time, loads of it. Whatever you post and share now takes days, if not months, to complete, prep, and upload. Things will be slower but your audience will have more questions (and you get a chance to build more trust?).

Because this is what you wanted.

Because getting likes on the internet is the easy thing. Getting paid is difficult.

Make time to make difficult content.