Label: blog, Business, Inspiration
When it comes to content marketing, the number one problem most companies face is coming up with new topics. When you have to write 3-5 blog posts a week, plus articles and whitepapers, produce a video, write a company newsletter and so forth, it’s easy to feel like you’ve run out of things to say in a short while. Don’t be discouraged! Sometimes all you have to do is change the way you look and think about your industry and you’ll discover a whole new bevy of blog topics just waiting to be written about!
Here are 5 places you can look for inspiration today:
1. Competitor’s newsletters
You never want to copy the competition as that always leaves you two steps behind, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use the competition as a source of inspiration for your blog. Subscribe to their company newsletter and blog RSS feed and see what kind of topics they are focusing on. This is useful in two different ways. First, you’ll be able to pull nuggets of information from their blog posts and take your own spin on it. Chances are, if the competition has done their research, the content they are writing is geared towards the same target audience as you. Secondly, it will also give you a good idea of what your competition isn’t writing about. What niches do you see that you can dominate and claim as your own? What important information are they leaving out that your target audience is hungry for? By writing blog posts that fill in the gaps of the competition’s content marketing, you are differentiating your brand and building authority.
2. Frontline employees
Who are the people in your company that deal with your customers every day? It’s your sales clerks, people at the checkout counter, customer service department, field agents and so forth. These people interact with your customers on a daily basis; they probably understand the true needs and wants of your target audience better than a marketing report could ever explain. Ask them to keep their ear to the ground for blog topics. What kind of questions or complaints do they commonly hear? Every conversation they have with a current or potential customer can be focused down and turned into a blog post!
3. Website FAQ
If you’re really struggling for blog topics, why not check out your own website FAQ? At some point you decided those topics were important enough to dedicate web real estate to them, so why not recycle your content and turn them into blog posts? Content marketing is only as hard as you make it, and there is no need to reinvent the wheel every time you’re trying to come up with new blog post topics.
4. Webinar Q/A sessions
Webinars are a valuable tool for B2B companies trying to connect with potential customers. Why not get some value in return and use your webinar Q/A sessions to find blog topics? Every question asked is being posed by someone in your target audience (they already qualified themselves by signing up for your webinar). Chances are they are not the only members of your webinar audience or target market that have asked themselves that same question. Keep a notepad ready and jot down the questions as they come through, as well as a few notes about your answers. When you’re done with the webinar it’s easy to turn those notes into a few blog posts and schedule them out.
5. Blog comments section
Sometimes the comments section is more interesting than the blog post itself. Commenters can engage with each other in the comments section of your blog and the topic of conversation can spin off into a whole new direction. People will also ask questions in the comments, asking you to clarify one point or another. Some may even disagree with certain aspects of your blog post, or the entire post, and share their opinions in the comments. Comb through some of your well-loved blog posts and see what readers have to say!
About the Author: Nick Stamoulis is the President and Founder of Brick Marketing, a full-service web marketing and Boston SEO company. He also publishers the Brick Marketing SEO Newsletter, so check his website to subscribe.