“Content, Content, and More Content…”
The above statement was taken from the job description of my current position. In a nutshell, we content marketers need to be content machines. As I have written about previously, coming up with new and fresh ideas for posts can become taxing on your creativity.
Here are 5 ways to find inspiration for your next blog post:
Recent Industry News
Every once in a while a huge story breaks out in your industry. Whether a company makes a huge exit, a product gets shut down, or a well known executive gets fired, these types of stories will be spoken about for days.
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This is your time to pounce.
“Newsjacking,” though a somewhat nefarious-sounding word, refers to linking your own product or service to recent news items in order to gain more visibility. Obviously, this must be done with tact and professionalism.
A few ways to identify popular news stories include monitoring social channels (look at what’s trending on Twitter), as well as frequently reading industry blogs. If you choose the latter, you run the risk of beating a dead horse, so make sure that your post is unique in its insights and how you relate it to your own company, product, or service.
The Needs of Your Target Market
If you’re like me, you are hyper-aware of the conversations going on within your target market. As marketers, we have to be. To keep your finger on the pulse of potential customers, you need to be where they are – namely, social media, blogs, and message boards.
By staying in the middle of the action, you’ll be able to know what’s keeping your target market up at night, what your audience is lacking, and what questions they need answered – and then respond in the most relevant way possible.
Similar to newsjacking, this strategy needs to be carried out with tact. If, for example, a well-known person passes away, this is not an opportunity to piggy-back on the news for your own promotional benefit.
There are several go-to events that you can utilize. For example, the Super Bowl is an event that is talked about weeks (or even months) in advance. In our (marketing) world, the discussion often centers on the commercial aspects of the upcoming game, as well as the one from the previous year. Along with sporting events, you can also capitalize on presidential elections, changing of the seasons, and holidays.
Your life might be more interesting than you think. We all have great stories to tell; the key is being able to make them relate to the overall topic of your blog. I often write (much as I did with this post) about the challenges I face as a B2B content marketer, and the successful solutions I have found.
You can also write about recent events you attended, marketing campaigns you have launched, or a new and clever marketing strategy you came up with.
The prospect of having to produce a massive amount of content, especially for a small company, can be daunting. However, there is a strategy that allows marketers to create a plethora of quality content, without having to spend countless hours writing.
The concept is simple.- After creating a large piece of content, divide it up into different content items and distribute it across multiple channels. For example, if you recently hosted a webinar that was recorded, you can then it and turn it into numerous blog posts, upload the recording to YouTube, and the audio to Soundcloud.
By repurposing content, you will be able to get the most bang for your buck out of the blood, sweat, and tears you put into your content.