Inspiration is hard to fake. The same goes for quality. But what’s a business owner or a content marketer to do if they’re supposed to come up with great content, and they don’t know where to start?
Everyone knows that content is the key to turning a lead into a buyer. Each lead reads through your content and takes away something that they find useful. If your content isn’t valuable to them, they’re less likely to pay attention to your brand and what you have to say. No amount of SEO, keyword lacing, or fancy gimmicks can replace high-quality content.
So where can you find some inspiration for your content? Here are some ideas:
1 – Start with Your Own Site
If you’ve already published material on your site, then chances are you also use analytics to see which content draws in the most users.
From analytics software, you can see what types of content attracts your visitors, what they find interesting, what no one bothers to read, as well as what they find most worthy of comment.
You can also use your social media accounts to see which types of content generate a larger following. For example, if you find that your blog post promotions do better on your Twitter than they do on your LinkedIn, you may be doing right by Twitter. Next step would be to try the same style of promotion with LinkedIn.
2 – Find the Content the Crowd Likes
The amount of engagement your content gets from social media accounts can tell you which content generates more engagement and therefore more attention.
Count your likes, shares, comments and all forms of social media engagement to give you a clear picture of what content is socially successful. You can also join in the conversation in order to let your followers know that you’re listening. Read what your followers have to say about your content and respond whenever they have questions or show appreciation for your content.
In addition, you can put your readers to work by encouraging them to post comments. An ending sentence to your comment like “Please share your stories below” or “Please let us know what you think” can be a great prompt for your readers. You can also put up polls and surveys to find out what they think about certain topics.
3 – What is your Competition Doing?
Check out their site, and see what they’re doing right. Are they using more long-form content? Do they have a lot of infographics? What are they doing to get a higher ranking? You can follow up by learning what more people are interested in. Try to emulate what they do to engage their readers. Maybe they are either having more promotions, content with a lot of links or interesting for their readers to digest.
4 – How you can find what people are asking
Have a look at answer sites like Yahoo Answers and Quora. Find out if there is anything that people often ask when it comes to something in your niche. This will give you accurate blog topics ideas. Exactly what you need for creating a solid content marketing strategy.
For instance, if your business deals with gardening, find out some of the common questions about growing and harvesting plants. Then create your content around it. Social media groups are also a great place to start looking for content inspiration. You can read through tonnes of different questions, and you can even join in the discussion. Answer sites and social media groups are a treasure trove of unanswered questions about your industry. Use that for your content.
5 – Stay tuned with current events
The latest news and trends about your industry can make for great up-to-date content.
By finding out what the latest trends are in your industry, you can create a whole range of articles, infographics, and content about it.
For example, if you’re in the design industry and there’s this new kind of software on the market, mention this in your content. Show the readers how updated your site is! In addition, you can even make use of RSS and Google Alerts to tell you whenever there’s new information on breaking news on topics related to your industry.
6 – Do Trend Searches
Sites like Google Trends and Alltop help you find out more about trending topics. Google Trends can show you what people are searching for when it comes to a particular industry. For instance, when people search for recipes, are they interested in video tutorials, tutorials with lots of images or more straightforward text tutorials?
Alltop searches for items from authoritative sites and shows you what the bigwigs in your industry are talking about. Combine these two search tools and you’ll definitely find some content that people are highly likely to view.
6 – Connect your site to Google Search Console –and make the most of it!
Google Search Console shouldn’t be used just for indexing purposes. You can actually find out the keywords Google considers relevant specifically for your site.
It connects queries beyond keywords. This will let you refine what you already have or create more in-depth, tailored content. What’s best, you get to see how many times Google has shown your content with very detailed metrics, allowing you to figure where you should focus next.
7 – Step Out of the Office
Content writers and business owners sometimes forget what a rich source of inspiration the real world is! The virtual world can easily keep you captive with so many things going on.
Media like magazines, newspapers, TV and radio are still widely used by people because the content they have is still relevant. Information from these sources doesn’t necessarily have a lot of online attention. This gives you the opportunity to be the one to make this information available online.
Events in your industry allow you to have a firsthand experience with what you’ll be talking about online. By participating in seminars, trade shows, and exhibits, you can give your online viewers a glimpse of what’s happening in your industry. With the Internet right at your fingertips, you can do stories, stream live on Facebook or Instagram or even write a whole article complete with pictures!
Don’t let a lack of inspiration get in the way of you being able to produce quality content! Try new ways of finding engaging ideas to make sure that you can stay informed, and that your readers stay interested in your content.
What’s your favourite source of inspiration? Tell us your story in the comments below.