Are you having trouble coming up with ideas for your content marketing? If so, you’re not alone. It can be very difficult to come up with new ideas for content several times a week. What if there was an easier way? This article will introduce you to some methods of generating awesome content marketing ideas for your site. Using these techniques regularly will help you come up with content ideas for years to come.
We’ve all seen Google’s keyword suggestions when entering a keyword phrase. This simple method can lead to great insight into what people search for in your niche. All you need to do is open your web browser, go to Google.com, and start typing your keyword phrase. As seen in the example below, Google will automatically give you suggestions with popular keyword phrases that are relevant to your niche.
When your search is complete, take a look at the related searches section at the bottom of the screen for more suggestions.
Depending on your topic, YouTube can provide some alternative ideas related to videos using the same principle from Google. Of course, watching the videos can be a source of inspiration as well.
If you’re looking for a faster method to generate keyword ideas, check out Soovle.com. Like Google, Soovle.com provides a list of keyword phrases based on the keyword you type in. The difference is that Soovle.com provides keyword ideas from several websites all at once:
4. Social Media
You’ve spent a lot of time following people while trying to build your brand in social media. Why not use these great contacts to get ideas for new content? Sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ allow you to see what your customers are talking about. This can be an easy way to start a conversation with your potential customers and ask them what they would like to learn about your niche.
While you’re there, you may have the opportunity to interview them and learn what they think about the content you provide. You can learn more about where they hang out online, get some feedback on content that you have already created, and where they think you should fill in some gaps.
While we’re on the topic of community, forums can be another way to generate content marketing ideas. This can be as simple as finding the right forum for your niche and spending some time there contributing. You might be surprised to see how many different ideas can be generated from a few minutes spent on a forum.
One thing you will typically find on forums is that people ask questions about how to solve their problems. This can be a great way to identify common problems for your niche. You can then write a blog post explaining how to solve the problems and then post a link on the forum to your blog post.
6. LinkedIn Groups
While LinkedIn may be known as a social media marketing site for professionals, it can also be a great way to gather insight about your industry. LinkedIn group discussions can provide insight into problems that are not available elsewhere. By staying up-to-date with these groups, you can make a list of frequently asked questions and generate some new content marketing ideas along the way. For more information on using LinkedIn in your marketing campaign, see my article “The Ultimate Guide to LinkedIn Marketing.”
7. Yahoo Answers
Yahoo Answers is an interesting way to find what questions and problems other people have related to your niche. An example would be going to Yahoo Answers and typing in “content marketing”. Once you hit the “search answers” button, it gives the following results:
For this basic search, there were over 25,000 questions asked that are related to the words “content” and “marketing”. Of course, you can narrow down the search by using quotation marks around your search query.
Some of the questions can be great topics for your content. They’re usually specific to your niche and show you the exact questions a potential client would be asking.
Quora is similar to Yahoo Answers. While it may be younger than Yahoo Answers, Quora is growing quickly. It usually has more in-depth questions than other Q&A sites.
Keeping track of the latest trends can be another way of generating ideas. Alltop.com provides a list of hot topics in a number of different niches. You can see what’s trending on several different sites at once.
Alltop can be a powerful source of gathering competitive intelligence. Imagine waking up every morning, drinking your coffee (or whatever morning beverage you prefer), and finding the latest updates in your niche. You can then bookmark and share the items you want to comment. Along the way, you can brainstorm topics for your next article.
Surveys can be a great way to collect ideas directly from your readers. You can use surveys every few months to help generate new ideas. Many times, we’ve heard that a lot of the same questions come up again and again. When this is the case, you can pick the most commonly selected items.
By decoding your target audience and creating content that your customers want, you can more easily resonate with what they want. You can also assume that future customers will want similar types of content. While this method may take more time, it can allow you to learn more about your readers to create compelling content that they’ll want to share.
11. Read Other Blogs
It’s amazing how many incredible ideas you can find when you read other people’s work. You obviously don’t want to copy their exact ideas, but sometimes it can be very helpful to meld ideas from multiple people into a new blog post. Sometimes you can even find great ideas by reading blogs from a totally unrelated topic to your niche. This can also be a smart way to find out what is trending. After your research, you can write your own take on it.
In the Internet Marketing niche, I love checking in on Inbound.org to see what sorts of blog posts are catching people’s attention and generating discussion and interest. Almost every niche or industry has content curators like Inbound.org – you just have to do some searching to find them.
Sometimes it can be helpful to start with the search engines to get an idea of what keywords are being used in your niche. Once you have those keyword phrases, you can then search social media sites like Facebook and Twitter or forums to find content related to your niche. Question-and-answer sites like Yahoo and Quora can give you further insight with moderated responses.
Once you know the right keywords to look for, discover the problems people in your target market are having by staying on top of the latest trends. Alltop.com can be an easy way to stay active in the community and help promote your brand. Please keep in mind that the goal is to help people and not to directly promote your business.
Of course, surveying your existing customers can provide insight like no other method. Sometimes an open comment box where you ask the reader, “What kind of problems are you having with <niche>?” can provide incredible insight.
Combining these ideas into habits will take a little time. However, it allows you to follow what’s important to people in your niche and create awesome content marketing ideas to fuel your online marketing campaign.