8 Great Content Generating Ideas

content ideas

Whether you’re planning your editorial calendar for the quarter ahead, or you’re desperately trying to come up with a topic for the post you need to publish by the end of the working day, these blog ideas can help you generate kick-ass content your customers will want to read.

Get Back to Basics

You may be an expert, but chances are your customers and readers are not. Think about the things you wanted to know when you first joined the industry, and create content around them that breaks the subject matter down and explains it in layman’s terms.

Keep Your Eye on Industry News

Industry news, or news that’s relevant to your customers, is a great medium for generating content ideas. It could be:

  • A new tool or product review
  • A law, regulation or standards change, and what it means
  • An issue, how it can affect your customers, and the solution you can provide to help them
  • A relevant opinion piece by someone else, updated with your thoughts, or information that adds to the conversation

If you want the latest industry news sent straight to your inbox, create a Google alert using relevant keywords so you’ll always stay in the loop.

Think About Your FAQs

Whether your business has a dedicated FAQs page or not, think about the kinds of questions your customers and prospects regularly ask you, and generate some useful content around them. Your readers want solutions – and providing them with the information they need, in a way that’s easy to understand and quick to consume, will position you as a trusted expert when they need more help.

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A Peek Behind the Curtain

Build a rapport and trust by giving your customers further insight into your business, and your team. Everyone loves an ‘access all areas’ style peek behind the curtain, so add posts to your editorial calendar such as:

  • Staff profiles – who your team members are and what they do
  • Professional development – share what you gained from a recent training or team-building exercise
  • The people behind the brand – offer some candid information about what your team does for fun, or personal achievements

Update Past Posts

Change is constant. While many of your previous blog posts may still be relevant, others may be out-of-date given industry or business developments. Go back through your earlier content and look at what can be refreshed. You can tweak your old posts and republish them, repost them as is with an updated intro on recent changes, or start completely from scratch and create new content (repurposing the old stuff where possible for background information).

Create a Tutorial

Is there something your customers and readers can do themselves with a little assistance? If it’s not your core business, and showing them how to DIY can be a great means of building trust and creating high-value content with great social sharing potential.

You might write a simple, step-by-step How To post, or walk them through the process in an audio file or podcast, or even show them how to do that thing they can do themselves with a video tutorial.

Consider Keywords

Wondering what your customers are searching for online? Create a Google AdWords account and use their free Keyword Planner tool for insight on what people are commonly searching for relating to your area of expertise.

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If you’re stuck for ideas, skim the list of suggested keywords to see what people are looking for information on, and compile ideas around the most frequently-searched keywords. You’ll be building SEO right into your content by writing about what people are already searching for.

Top 10s

Bloggers have known about the value of Top 10 (or 50, or 100)-style posts since ages ago, which is why so many of the best bloggers rely on them to generate high-value and engaging content often. When people see a Top 10-style headline, they immediately know what they can expect from the post, how fast they can probably consume the content, and whether or not it’s relevant to them. Your Top 10 might be anything from Things You Didn’t Know About [your industry] to Ways to Save on [your core service].

Nikki is a professional freelance writer and story teller with a passion for the web and technology. She writes for WP Dev Shed and amongst a roster of other clients.

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