<![CDATA[Every writer experiences writer’s block at some point in their career — and probably more times than we’d like. It’s not fun, but it happens to everyone. There are multiple ways a writer can overcome their block of finding a good content topic to write about. Looking up keywords relevant to your area of interest is a typical way to come up with content topics. While that’s a more common option, what else can you do? Below is a list of 10 overlooked ways to generate content topics relevant and interesting to your audience. 1. Let Social Media Be Your Saving Grace Social media sites have all the hot, trending topics. Users post statuses, leave comments or send tweets with hashtags. Use Facebook and Twitter to your advantage. Find out what people are searching for through Twitter search, know what popular hashtags are being used, start or join a TweetChat and see what questions users are asking or discussing. Even our own Greg Shuey runs a Twitter chat called #seochat. It is highly successful and a great way to figure out what questions people have around your industry. 2. Use Social Search Tools Other online tools to peruse are social search tools. These tools, such as Topsy and Bottlenose, tell you what’s happening in social media right now. So if you don’t want to go through your own social networking accounts, use one of these to see some of the latest articles, tweets and trending topics. 3. Talk To Your Sales And Service Staff These people are the ones who interact with your customers and leads daily. Since they work so closely with them, they know the daily questions asked and challenges faced. This gives you a chance to answer those questions and help solve their problems through your content. 4. Look Into Relatable Forums There are Internet forums for nearly every topic out there. Join one to see what people are talking about to help you generate content topics. You can see what questions people in the forum are asking, and then write a piece answering their question and post it as a comment in the forum for that viewer and others to read. 5. Do The Work For Your Readers In most cases, your readers don’t want to do all the research before buying a new product. Let’s be honest, research is a pain and takes up a lot of time. Most people would rather find out who’s already done the research and then read their review. Be the reviewer and do the research for your readers. Your readers will appreciate you for it and are likely to come back for more reviews if you write good, honest ones. 6. Keep Up With Current Events People want to know what’s hot, who’s hot and why. To help you generate content topics, keep up to date with current events and top trends in your area and even worldwide. You can write about an event or trend by summarizing it, focusing on a specific part or writing your own viewpoint from it. Just be sure to publish your content before the topic becomes old news. 7. Browse Online Libraries And Books You’re a writer so clearly (hopefully) you like to read. Whether you do or don’t, books are a great source of ideas. They can help you find new topics to write about or allow you to dig deeper into a topic and discover unique information about it. A good way to find multiple content topics is choosing a book related to your field or area of interest, writing down its chapter headings and then using each heading as a future content piece topic. 8. Go To Your Analytics If you want to know what’s worked and not worked for you, look over your site’s analytics. The data there tells you what past topics or pieces brought you traffic, shares and comments and which ones didn’t. Use that information to know what topics will be beneficial for you to write about. 9. Watch A TV Show Or Movie TV shows and movies can get your creative juices flowing. Watch one you’ve never seen or try out a new genre than what you’re used to and see how it can help you think about new content topics. It can also help you see a topic from a different, more interesting angle. 10. Ask People For Ideas A go-to method is always asking people for ideas. There are hundreds of people you can ask: family, friends, co-workers, readers, etc. Directly asking these people for ideas or picking up on topics in casual conversation are ways to help you discover new topics to write about. When you’re having writer’s block — and trust me, you will — don’t stress. This list provides plenty of options to help you generate content topics that your readers will relate to and enjoy.]]>
10 Overlooked Ways To Generate Content Topics
by Kirsten Metcalf | Dec 10, 2013 | Content Marketing | 1 comment
Fantastic post Kirsten! I also like to hang out on Quora and Yahoo Answers to see what some of the most common questions are and then build content that specifically answer those questions.
If you’re fast enough, you can even run back and drop a link to your post and drive traffic back to your site. We’ve even pulled clients from efforts like this.