Staring at the blank screen again? This is one experience that every blogger will identify with! Writer’s block isn’t about being a novice or a pro blogger. It is about coming up with an excellent idea for a content piece.
Content is not called King for nothing. When pitted against paid search, content marketing gets three times the leads per dollar spent, according to Kapost and ELOQUA. Content marketing has both lower upfront costs and more profound long-term benefits.
I still remember when I started; I was enthusiastic about writing my blog, but about what? Google Trends, movies, television shows, news, my learnings, and things I am passionate about are all features in my content ideas. However, that doesn’t always work, especially given how quickly the desires and preferences of present-day audiences change.
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Over the years, I have taught myself some great ways to develop content ideas. Here’s a look at some key learnings.
Perform Market Research
Before you start writing, market research should be considered to develop a great idea that can attract traffic, lead conversions, and get your readers’ admiration.
Through good market research, you can identify the questions readers are asking nowadays, their problem areas and what competitors are doing to build relationships with their target audience.
The research will also help you identify your target readers’ keywords.
Data like site visits, click-through rates, subscriber numbers on email newsletters, Facebook likes, and the number of comments you receive on a blog post will be of immense help when surveying your readers to understand what content they are more interested in.
If appropriately done, market research can help you generate hundreds of blog ideas so that you don’t have to repeat this research process for some time.
However, do not get tempted to copy or paraphrase someone else’s content.
Steal from Competitors’ Most Shared Posts
Yes, I am asking you to steal ideas but in an intelligent way. The key is to find already popular articles by either browsing your competitor blogs or news aggregator sites like Reddit, Inbound.Org, or Hacker News.
However, do not get tempted to copy or paraphrase someone else’s content. If you do so, you might end up annoying your reader while making your blog vulnerable to lawsuits from the original content writer or, worse, being found plagiarizing by Google. Instead, use competitor sites to get inspiration for content ideas.
To get a cheat sheet for stealing from your competition’s best ideas, read this blog post by Neil Patel.
Other Ways to Find Content Ideas
You can also use tools like BuzzSumo to find topics that are getting shared.
Also, consider the topics that Google is suggesting. When you type in a question word like “how to” with a topic word like “create content,” Google will present a list of blog topics you can use for your next blog post.
Write Unique Content
The truth is that no matter how innovative or unique you think the topic you choose is, there is a huge possibility that someone has already written about it.
So, once you have chosen the topic or the idea, there are some ways you can elaborate on the same general issues. Aim only to improve the original article’s work and not steal it.
You can look at the original idea from a different angle, disagree with the original author, make the reader view the bigger picture, fill in points that the original writer might have missed, and, if you are doing so, back up what you have to say with scientific research, evidence, facts, and statistics.
This way, you can add your personal touch and unique perspective to the content without copying the original work. Since you’ll provide new insights, your reader will find value addition in your article.
One last word of advice – before you write a single word, you should know your subject, the basic outline of what you want to talk about, and your target audience.
This will help you connect better with the reader and provide information or insights that they will benefit from.