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The 3 Easiest Ways to Find Blog Content Ideas

Most companies today know the importance of maintaining an active blog and producing content on a regular basis – for inbound marketing, SEO and overall brand awareness. But the real test is writing compelling content that delivers value for your audience.

Thankfully, you don’t have to come up with content ideas on your own. The inspiration is out there; you just need to know where to look. Here are our three favorite sources of blog content ideas.

1. Customers

When clients ask me where to begin, my answer is always the same: What questions are people asking you?

The best place to begin is with your frequently asked questions. Every question on that list is a potential blog post. And if you don’t talk with customers directly, ask your sales team. I’m willing to bet most of them can list 20 questions without batting an eye.

Once those ideas start to dry up, ask your customers directly. You’ll uncover ways to improve your content marketing strategy just by asking what information they find important in the decision-making process and what unanswered questions they may have.

Of course, the key to creating valuable content around customer questions is honesty and authenticity. People are searching for answers, not blatant sales pitches. But if you can become a trusted information source, it will happen organically.

2. Twitter

Twitter has fallen off of some marketers’ go-to list of marketing channels, but it’s still the best place to see what people are talking about in any given subject. Its real-time search function lets you view any tweet or conversation that includes your given search term or hashtag.

Set up searches for your industry or product/service category and get a sense of what people are talking about:

  • What opportunities are they excited about?
  • What are their frustrations or pain points?
  • What questions are they asking of Twitter experts?

All of these are potential story ideas.

And if you or your company are already active on Twitter, see if you can remedy some of these pain points through your own tweets. It’ll help you earn the trust of people on the network so that you can ask them more questions later on.

3. Competitors

Your competitors can be a tremendous source of content ideas. And no, I’m not telling you to steal their ideas and write them as your own. But it’s essential that you keep up to date with what they’re publishing. Ask yourself these questions when you’re reading:

  • What are some common themes?
  • How do those themes compare with your customers’ needs?
  • What holes do you see in their content, and how can you fill them?
  • Most importantly, what questions do you have after reading your competitors’ posts?

For example, if I see another company writing about web design and think they missed an important component, suddenly there’s an opening for me to discuss that topic on our blog.

Brainstorming content ideas doesn’t have to be daunting. You’re already doing most of the work in your daily activity, talking to customers and researching your industry.

Now you just need to take the next step and turn that work into valuable content for your customers. Follow these three steps and you’ll be well on your way.

Questions

What do you think? What questions has this post raised for you, and what did I miss? Comment and I’ll write a follow-up post to answer them.