Content is king, but what happens when the crown falls from your fabulous idea-generating head?
Companies and organisations can reach thousands of new customers and contacts through a well-executed content marketing drive. Whether it’s editorial, images or video, brief comments or blogs, it’s a cost-effective way to reach people and boost online rankings.
To keep people engaged, however, your content needs to be consistently excellent. Your content represents your organisation, and if it’s stale it’s doing as much harm as good.
Coming up with five or six good ideas might seem simple enough, but after six months of producing two or three editorial items per week, the inspiration may well have dried up. We’re all susceptible to writer’s block.
Now is the time to look at a formula for creativity, thinking about a system that can be relied upon to continuously generate content ideas that are worth reading. Here are 5 suggestions for keeping the editorial coming.
You know what it can be like on social media. Everyone saying how much they love the new John Lewis advert, that Lionel Messi is brilliant, that “it’s wine o’clock xx :)”. Sometimes you just want to tear in, be contrarian and shake a few feathers. If there’s a topic that seems to be universally agreed upon, could you put forward an opposite point of view? It will most likely create a bit of a stir, and as long as it’s a case that you can defend, it may lead people to think a little differently and have a greater regard for your refreshing opinions.
If your Word document is blank, fear not. Look at Twitter, turn on the news, open the paper. It may be that your area of expertise is somewhat removed from the US election or the latest reality TV show, but can a little dexterity of thought bring the two together? If you’re a nutritionist or fitness coach, could you reach out to fans of ITV’s I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here by considering the effect of ‘jungle’ life on the contestants? If you are a social media expert, what is your take on the two candidates’ efforts during the US poll?
Bringing a personal element to what might be a fairly dry topic can be useful in drawing readers in. If you can put a personal experience at the heart of a blog, it encourages a response and gives more angles from which to attack the subject. The personal element encourages readers to find out about you, and consider how the topic might affect them. By revealing a personal point of view you are also showing that you are engaged with the subject, rather than merely writing to fill a content marketing quota. Write about it or maybe even talk about it on your YouTube channel.
Yes, look at a topic from every different angle. Call it the crystal effect, call it 360-degree, the full monty, whatever you will. If there’s a major topic, why not discuss it over a series of pieces, whether they are linked or standalone? For example, assessing the effect of the Brexit vote on a UK exporter might be rather hard to cram into a single blog. Perhaps this could be broken up into topics that assess the positives and negatives within areas such as tax and tariffs, employment law, timescale, competition, currency value and so on.
There’s nothing that says you have to sit in a dark room and come up with your own ideas. Why not phone a friend? If you want to proactively reach out, why not actually ask your rivals or potential customers what they’d like you to discuss. The worst they can do is ignore your email or tweet.
Speaking of phoning a friend, we love to talk at GrowthMinds. If you’d like to discuss editorial ideas, Lionel Messi or ‘wine o’clock’, we are only a call or message away.