Content marketing is an invaluable asset for companies and businesses of all shapes and sizes. A good content marketer has to keep up with new content, storytelling, and visuals that attract the right people.
If you stay one step ahead, on top of trends in your market, you’ll gain the insights you need to create and generate the type of content your audience is hungry for. Here are five tips to help you generate consistent, exciting content ideas.
1. Follow your followers
For content marketing to be effective you need to truly know your audience. Find out what’s important to them. Ask them questions, follow the trends they follow. It’s a great way to spark content marketing ideas.
Some questions we often ask ourselves are: What are our followers saying on social media? What do they care about? What questions are they asking? Use these insights to gain the upper hand on your competition.
Don’t limit yourself to just following your current customers either, if you target a certain demographic, create buyer personas and follow groups of potential customers. If you can find out what your future customers are saying you’ll know what your next piece of content should be about.
2. Answer questions immediately
Once you know the questions they’re asking, position yourself to provide the answers and solutions they need. Every audience is asking questions, you should be answering them and the quicker the better. Reacting quickly can push you to try new mediums and dip your toe into unfamiliar waters you would otherwise have let slip by or put off for another day.
Set aside some time to figure out what your customers are asking and generate content that answers their queries and teaches them something significant and new within as short a time frame as you can. Remember, quality should take priority, never rush something out just to answer quickly but set deadlines to make sure you’re getting your content out in a timely fashion.
It’s common for some of the questions your customers are asking to be about you so make sure to teach them about your product, software or service. Content marketing is about creating positive brand awareness, happy customers can lead to the all-important word of mouth marketing so ensure they’re getting the most out of what you offer.
3. Keep an eye on your competition
You can learn a lot from watching your competitors. What do they do well? Where do they fail to help customers? Use that information to provide a better response to customer needs.
Besides following your market, tracking your competitors is a great way to come up with unique ideas for what you want to share. Be careful not to simply copy what others are doing though, you want to put something as unique as possible out there so only look to competitors for inspiration. After all, you don’t want to plagiarize someone else’s work, you want to put your own spin on it so it fits your voice and brand.
4. Stay in the know
Keeping up with the market and industry trends is key to creating great content. New products, ideas, companies, and news creates a buzz! Use that to your advantage.
Sign up for industry reports, study research data, know your stuff inside out. Unless you are knowledgeable about market trends, you won’t be able to keep up with them. You don’t need to know everything but you should try to be an expert in your field at the very least.
5. Position yourself as the expert you are
Great content teaches others and offers expert advice and information. What do you know about your business or industry that will be helpful to your customers or audience? Sometimes the best content comes from what you already know.
Education and sharing knowledge is a major factor in good content marketing, always have your hand out giving, if you’ve picked up some tips and tricks along your journey share them with your customers.
It’s important to manage this perspective though, you don’t want to come off as a know it all and your customers will lose faith if they think you don’t know much. Guide your clients with what you already know well, and admit to growing along the way. Become the expert people need, and they’ll listen to the story you have to tell.
Ideas are all around you
Creating great content that your followers will want to share all comes down to knowing what they want to read, see, and feel. Use these marketing insights to produce something unique.
Brainstorming or mind mapping with your team will result in ideas being voiced and put down, then recreated in an appealing way. Even if you have to rehash old content, you can do it creatively. There are ideas all around us, but it takes putting on our thinking caps and getting to work to make them a reality.
Inspiration strikes more frequently than lightning so consider keeping a swipe file full of ideas on your phone. That way whenever the cartoon lightbulb appears above your head you can quickly jot it down for later and when you’re struggling to come up with new ideas you’ll have a treasure trove to sift through.
Planning properly with content schedules, investing time and resources, and keeping a steady stream of great content ideas in mind is the first step to staying ahead of the competition. With a little creativity and a lot of commitment, you can stand out in a sea of digital noise!