If you’re like us, you’ve probably thought “I should sit down and write some new content,” but when you open up a new document you end up staring at a blank screen. How can you know what to write about that will resonate with your target audience and attract the right people to your business?
Whether it’s for the blog, for social media or for a training, when we’re stuck for ideas, here are the 7 places we look for content, and you can too:
1. ASK YOURSELF WHAT YOU’D LIKE TO BE SEEING
This one may seem obvious, but stick with us. Chances are you follow others in your industry. What are they not posting about that they should be addressing? What issues in your industry are being avoided online because they’re too complicated or taboo or even too honest? What do you wish people would start talking about? That’s probably a good place to start.
2. OFFER A NEW TAKE ON WHAT YOU’RE ALREADY SEEING
Look at what those same competitors are posting and ask yourself what you have to add to the conversation. It’s important to always credit where the ideas come from, especially if you echo a sentiment clearly inspired by one source, but adding your own ideas to the conversation is a great way to differentiate yourself in the industry, and it could help attract new people to your audience if you’re linking or using hashtags associated with the topic.
3. CHECK YOUR EMAILS
No, really. Not as a distraction, but as a source of inspiration. What question do people always ask you? What are the misconceptions you’ve had to address? What objections do people have to your services? Writing posts that address these things could win over some people that would otherwise not be convinced.
4. GOOGLE KEYWORD PLANNER
This AdWords feature isn’t just for AdWords. It tells you how many people are searching for various keywords, including long-tail phrases, as well as how competitive that keyword is in terms of existing content. If only one person has ever searched for it, you’re wasting your time. Your goal is to find relevant keywords that have as many searches as possible while still being low-competition. (The key word — pun intended — here is RELEVANT, because Google is smart enough to know whether it fits in the context of your site as a whole.)
5. ASK YOUR CUSTOMERS WHAT THEY’D LIKE TO SEE
Honestly, it really can be as simple as asking the next client you interact with what they would like to see on your social media or your blog. Ask in person. Use the questions feature in your Instagram story, or ask them to comment on a post with their answers. And then follow up on delivering that content.
6. HAVE YOUR CUSTOMERS SHOW YOU WHAT THEY’D LIKE TO SEE
This works especially well for retail or other product-based businesses but can work across the board if you do it right. Run a competition where your audience submits photos of them using your products, saying what they love about your products, etc. Then use what they submit as a jumping off point for your posts. Pay special attention to what content of theirs gets the best engagement so you can emulate that style in your own content. And don’t forget to repost their content as well!
7. CONSULT YOUR PAST SELF
We’re not talking about busting out a Ouija board (is that even how that works?). Instead, take a look at some old to-do lists, emails, or even Google search histories. See where you were before, and acknowledge the experience or insight that bridged the gap to where you are and what you know now. This could be a great jumping-off point for some content, especially for service providers, educators and coaches.
If you’re still stuck on what to post, we’re always happy to brainstorm a few ideas with you! Drop us a comment below, or book a free strategy call to get your content train rolling forward again.