“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing” – Benjamin Franklin.
Let’s kick this off by saying that this isn’t a post to convince you that you need to write a blog. If you Google “does my business need a blog?” there are over 280 million pages to cover that topic, while remembering that many businesses have grown successfully without one. I will post a few stats though:
- Content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing and generates about 3 times as many leads. (Source: DemandMetric)
- 69% of marketers say content is superior to direct mail and PR. (Source: Custom Content Council)
- The most common content marketing delivery mechanism is social media, used by 87% of marketers. (Source: CMI)
The one thing that I will say for blogs at this point, is that they’re valuable content to help your social media goals as well as having SEO benefits.
Back to this post though, which is designed to offer some suggestions about where your content ideas could come from. So, in no particular order, here goes:
- Inbound Customer Contact – What questions are your customers and prospects asking of you – through forms, phones calls, emails, tweets, etc? What do they want to know that could form the content of a blog post?
- Competitors – What are your competitors talking about and what angle could you write from, that is relevant to your audience?
- Social Media Search – Search for your keywords on twitter, Linkedin, etc. that could tell you what your target audience are talking about and asking of each other.
- Forums & Groups – For example, find a relevant group on LinkedIn and Facebook, see a question that someone has asked, write a response on a blog post, then answer the question with a link to the blog post.
- Look back at an old post – What did you write about last year, that you have a new opinion of or could follow up on?
- Run a poll on Facebook and Twitter – What do the conclusions tell you that could prompt a blog post?
- Look at this – Have a look at http://answerthepublic.com/. It’s fairly self-explanatory.
- The News – Relevant news stories that you have an opinion about.
I did also ask the question on twitter and received the following responses:
@edagoodman I have a never ending list in my notebook. I add about 10 eachday. Inspiration comes from my life, nature and people around me
— Daisy (@prettygreentea) February 24, 2017
@edagoodman I see, hear, or read something that either really inspires me or really gets to me. 😏
— AllisonGrayce👩🏼💻 (@allisongrayce) February 24, 2017
@edagoodman My work. Problems people ask me about. Things I care about. Things I think need to be written about 🙂
— Mark Dalgarno (@MarkDalgarno) February 26, 2017
Now What Do I Do?
Also remember that a blog post can be delivered in so many ways. A post can be recorded as an audio version and delivered as a podcast. Then perhaps, you could record a video of you with the post as a script. These ideas alone means that 5 blog posts then become 15 valuable pieces of content. From there, you could deliver speeches from your collection of blogs or write a book. The opportunities are varied, vast, and valuable to helping you to spread the word of how knowledgeable you are.
- The more you plan your content, the less you’ll likely you are to get into a last minute stress about it. What topics can you plan to write about ahead of time?
- Create a list of the 3 best sources of content topics for you that you can start to work with and refer back to.
- Get in touch if you’re still struggling.
These are just some of the options available, but there are more. Where do you get your best content ideas from? Add them to the comments box below.