From time to time, every site owner or blogger appears in a situation when it is nothing to write about. Yes, everyone knows this can be avoided if planning a content strategy. However, everybody still falls in this position.
So, what to write about, if you forget to update the editorial plan? Check out this list of content ideas.
Ready-made content ideas
- Create an article on the ‘pros and cons’ format. For example, if you sell tires, write ‘For and against the use of studded tires in winter.’
- Selections from the past materials. You can create a selection by time, topic, author, popularity, etc. For example, “Top 5 articles of December” or “10 most useful materials for the business.” One gets quickly, just use the statistics from Google Analytics and publish thoughts on this subject. You can even not bother with analytical services and come up with a list to your taste.
- ‘Behind the Scenes’ format. Show the audience how your company operates. Capture video, make a photo report, write text.
- A list of your favorite tools. Tell the public which services and apps you often use in your daily work.
- Already published your tools choice? No problem. Take one of them and write a detailed review. And how many of them there are on the list?
- Case study post. For example, open a web analytics system and evaluate metrics of the site effectiveness. Describe the dynamics for six months.
- Guest post. It’s usually easy to attract external experts to write for your blog as it’s also a promotion for them.
- The interview. For example, talk with your leading specialist.
- Photo report. Publish photos from the latest industry event you have visited.
- Compile a list of jokes related to your industry – people love to be entertained, so, make them laugh.
- Create a quiz. It can be useful for your audience, e.g., “How to make sure your SEO works” or just for fun. Use services like Qzzr for this purpose.
- Compilation of the materials published in the past. Take a piece of paper you wrote in May, connect with a fragment of July, mix with April quotes and get new content in an interesting pitch.
- Take a video on Youtube dedicated to your business and comment it on. Moreover, comments like ‘it is not right, and here’s why…’ bring greater success than neutral or positive.
- Write a story about your client. Describe how your product helped him to solve a problem or succeed.
- Update some old articles. Your blog definitely contains some materials which need refreshing.
- A story about the profession. If you sell dresses, tell the audience who the tailors are. Explain how to find a good specialist.
- Glossary, explanation of terms. Create the Industry Dictionary. You can explain the meaning of certain words in a separate post. For example, if you provide SEO services, tell what the keyword cannibalization, trust rank, white/black hat are.
- Create infographics. People adore learning information from pictures. Take any of your materials published previously and make the infographic. Canva is my favorite app for doing this kind of stuff.
- People to follow post. Describe the influencers of your industry and provide links for your audience to connect them through their blogs and socials, or events, etc.
- Write an SAQ Post – The Should Ask Question Post. This is a question that customers or prospects don’t ask — but they should. For example, if you sell used vehicles, you can write an article ‘What questions you should ask to ensure you buy a car that hasn’t ever participated in an accident.’
- FAQ Post. Write a detailed response to questions your customers ask. And how to find the acute and pressing topics your audience is interested in, I’ll tell you right now 😉
Sources for generating content ideas
Google Trends is a nice place to start looking for inspiration. But to my mind it only works for blogs that don’t set strict boundaries regarding the subject. Even selecting a Category and location gives a pretty wide range of results, so you still have to be lucky to get something related to your niche.
Setting the category to Sci/Tech and location to France gives results that hardly can fit in one blog:
It may sound ridiculous, but using a calendar can not only help with finding new topics, but with creating a content plan tool. It’s a real gold mine for SMM when it comes to daily posts. Obviously, we’re not talking about a regular calendar here. Wikipedia comes to mind at first, it has huge lists of noteworthy events for each day of the year. Finding a topic that will fit a blog with strict guidelines still requires some luck, but it’s much easier to find a topic when you have this much to choose from.
Alternatively, you can google a date and add an area of your interest to it, for example, “July 15th in space exploration”.
Spend some time researching the upcoming dates, find interesting events tied to these dates, and you have an ultimate content plan in your hands.
Keyword research tools, like Serpstat, gather and store search data from Google (and other search engines), allowing you to know exactly what your audience is looking for. You can find search queries related to your blog by researching your most common keywords, your domain or the domains of your competitors.
Search queries may not sound like the best source of ideas for a topic, and it’s so if you use google’s search suggestions:
This is why tools like Serpstat are the best for the job. Serpstat has a filter that shows the search queries in forms of questions.These questions are an excellent source of subjects to discuss.
Let’s find some topics for three random subjects: Fighter Jets, Playstation Games, and Digital Marketing.
Enter your subject into the search bar and hit search. You’ll get a detailed report on the keyword you entered, take a note of the number of monthly searches and competition.
To find questions, related to your keyword, go to the Content Marketing menu. This is not the full list related to our first subject:
As you see, there’s plenty of questions to choose from. Add some creativity, and you have following topics to cover: “What Jets do Different Countries Use?” or “Where to start if you want to be a fighter pilot.”
When we repeat the process with Playstation Games we get this:
Again, it’s only the part that fit on the screenshot.
“Rare Playstation Games and their price, you might be unknowingly rich” – List and description of collector’s items related to Playstation;
“Our favorite Free games from Playstation Plus” – list of free PS plus games with reviews and recommendations.
And here are the search suggestions for Digital Marketing:
“How to choose a digital marketing agency, 5 signs that you won’t get screwed” – guide to choosing a proper agency;
“Is digital marketing cost-efficient?” – Research or a case study.
Quora is a gold mine to search for questions you can answer the readers of your blog. To do this:
- Read. If you conduct a travel blog, the question like “What is the Chinese believe the strange behavior of Europeans?” will bring you the new idea, you will only have to answer it.
- Analyze questions. On Quora, you can select a question and track it, find out where the most subscribers are and write an article to answer it.
- Trends on Quora. Look what questions are popular now. An article responding such question will definitely be actual.