Content Marketing Ideas
It’s common to hit a content creation wall.
It doesn’t come naturally for many to just write about what they know or what they do.
Some of us think that everything needs to be an original thought. Others fear the backlash of the vocal and critical internet crowd.
Whatever the reason, many business owners choose to let their website collect dust and do away will the blog roll.
Creating good, engaging content is not easy. Odds are some of you tried blogging once or twice and gave up when you didn’t see the leads pouring in. Just like dieting, you can’t eat clean for one week and expect you to hit your goal weight forever. Content creation needs to be a lifestyle change.
That might seem intimidating. You want me to blog once a week or a few times a month? That could be 52 new articles. Where am I going to come up with 52 new ideas or even things to talk about? Hold on, each blog should be 750-1000 words?
No thanks. I’ll just spend money on Google Ads and call it a day.
It’s fair to say most of us think and feel this way. But it’s not actual. You can win at content marketing and not run out of ideas. You just need a little help.
Don’t Worry About Internet Trolls or Imposter Syndrome
If you are worried about trolls, don’t be. Offs are you aren’t on their radar. They are busy yelling at each other on the local news Facebook. If by chance they do engage, block. That easy. On to the next problem: Imposter syndrome.
You won’t be the first person to write about your topic. It’s unlikely you will be the smartest person to cover your topic. You probably won’t even be the only person posting about your topic – that day. That’s okay.
Your audience wants you’re perspective and opinion. That’s something only you can do. If someone stumbles upon your article, you have their attention and you can be their last stop. Answer their question and maybe you get that newsletter subscription.
Now that you got out of your own way and are ready to start creating, what should you write about? Should you tell a story? Maybe you just want to make a list. How about just answering some basic questions.
Yes. Those are all great ways to get the word out and get your customer’s attention. There are several dozen unique ways (as outlined in this week’s recommended podcast) to write valuable content. The key is to know your audience and meet them where they are.
Popular and Notable Content Types
It’s unlikely you are going to recreate the wheel. Instead, find out what type of content your audience consumes and try your hand at it. Content is not exclusive to writing or blogging. Many great pieces of content are found through images on Pinterest or Instagram. YouTube and Vimeo hold some of the greatest pieces of content on the Internet. Everyone knows how much I love podcasts – which is top of the line content.
- Blogs (of course)
- Infographics or Reference Materials
- Templates or Tools
- How To Documents or Videos
- Listicles, Best of, or Top # articles
- Presentations or Trainings
- Podcasts or Interviews
This is just scratching the surface on some content types – but how do you find content ideas? Let’s see if I can help with some tips and tricks.
Content Ideas Answer Questions
I’ve talked about some of these tools in the past with keyword research and they work perfectly for creating blogs, infographics, or FAQ. When someone goes to the internet to ask a question, they are looking for a quality answer. You have the data to find out what they are asking, so all you need to do is answer that question on your website.
Google’s autocomplete on search is the simplest way to find out what people are asking.
Type your industry, service, or top product into Google and see what people are asking. Pick one of the suggested questions and have at it. You can probably write your next ten blogs based on these suggestions.
Quora reminds me a lot of the old Yahoo Questions (which might still be a thing). Quora is a website where people go to ask questions and get user-generated answers. Once again, find out what people are asking on Quora and they are likely asking on Google, Bing, and DuckDuckGo.
Answer The Public
If you need hundreds of possible content ideas all from one word, here is your go-to-place. AnswerThePublic.com answers who, what, when, where, and how and gives a ton of suggestions.
Content Ideas For Telling Stories
Not every piece of content on the internet needs to answer a specific question. Sometimes you want to build knowledge or entertain. There are plenty of ways you can generate some ideas to talk about.
Make a List with Metrics
You can seriously rank anything these days. I ranked the best restaurants in the Ohio Valley based on Domain Authority. I also gave letter grades to podcast apps. Find something you want to talk about and figure out a way to rank them. You can use reviews, location proximity, or subjective opinion. People love skimming through lists.
Look at Industry Leaders
Most big companies have writers on staff and can create hundreds of fresh articles per year. They are normally giving their perspective from a massive company. Would your audience like to hear your perspective on a local scale? You can certainly look at their framework and make it work locally.
Interview and Transcribe
Don’t feel like writing? If you prefer to talk with someone, try setting up a microphone and recording a conversation. This makes for great podcasts, but you can also transcribe the conversation and make this into an article. If you don’t want to get all fancy with transcription, just listen back or take notes and summarize the story. You ask the questions, they provide the answers, and you get a new piece of content.
Content Ideas Using Photos and Videos
Entire social media networks and websites were created with the idea that content does not have to be in written form. Don’t force yourself into writing if you can tell a story with imagery.
MEMEs and GIFS
Are you funny? Maybe a bit sarcastic? Do you know a graphic designer or technically savvy enough to work Canva? MEMES and GIFS go viral faster than anything else I know (my opinion – even though Neil Patel did an actual viral study). See if you can incorporate your brand or message into a MEME.
Infographics and Research Data
Use charts to tell a story. If you find yourself doing research for a project, utilize that information and find a free infographic maker online. With some dragging and dropping, you might create the next graphic that gets pinned to thousands of boards (talking about Pinterest and not actual cork boards).
Put yourself out there and get the biggest band for your buck. Social Media platforms are begging you to go live and when you do, your content hijacks the algorithm. Shoot from the hip or give yourself some bullet points, just make sure you represent your brand. What you say in a 10-minute live video might take you 3-hours to create on a blog post.
If you put your mind to it and know that you are going to start producing content, you will find ideas. I create a document on my phone called “Blog Ideas”.
When a customer asks me a question I don’t know, I make sure I put this down as a blog idea. If I am going to find an answer for my client, why not share the information with everyone?
When I am scrolling through Facebook and see an interesting article or concept from a completely unrelated topic, I ask myself if I can spin that article to fit web design. If so, I write it down on my list.
You will find ideas if you are actively open and looking. Now open up your Notepad and make that list.
The Podcast: “Top 25 Content Marketing Ideas to Help Your Customer and be Their Hero”
Pam Moore goes all out and gives you all of the great content ideas. I touch on some above, but she gives you a full 25. Enjoy.