The content you create is essential in growing your brand online.

Not only does it help to attract people to your website and social media profiles, but your content is also a way to add value and to position yourself as an authority. And in time, people will begin to view you as a trustworthy source in your field.

However, creating fresh and exciting content can be challenging if you’re feeling short on ideas. Luckily, we have some tips that will get those creative juices flowing and ensure you’ll have a full content plan for the months ahead.

That’s because our latest #ContentWritingChat was all about sourcing epic content ideas.

#ContentWritingChat Recap: Sourcing Epic Content Ideas With Masooma Memon

Our guest host this month was a frequent #ContentWritingChat participant, Masooma Memon. She’s a freelance writer for B2B SaaS companies, meaning she knows a thing or two about generating awesome content ideas. Masooma offered some great advice throughout the chat, so let’s dive into the recap!

Q1: What’s a great content idea?

You want to make sure your content is not only relevant to your brand, but also solves a pain point that your target audience is facing. When they see that you’re able to help them with their problems, they’ll be sure to come back for more.

It’s also smart to bring your own unique, creative perspectives to a topic. Don’t just copy what everyone else is doing because that gets repetitive. Find a way to put your own spin on things for a new take.

At the end of the day, it’s all about adding value. If you’re not adding some sort of value to the lives of those in your audience, they won’t have much reason to stick around.

Again, add value! When you genuinely care about showing up and serving your audience, creating quality, valuable content becomes so easy.

Another element of a great content idea is passion. If you aren’t passionate about the topics you’re writing and speaking on, it’ll show. Attract people to your work by creating content around the things you truly love.

Q2: What are some unique ways to source content ideas?

Masooma suggests using platforms like Reddit and Quora to discover the kinds of questions your target audience is asking. You can also look into the most popular and top-rated books in your industry via Amazon. That also shows what they’re interested in.

You can’t go wrong with reading! Check out books and blogs in your field to discover what other creators are talking about, as well as what their audience is discussing in the comments section. It may take some time on your part, but social listening is a powerful way to gain a better understanding of who your audience is and what they’d like to see from you.

And finally, Masooma also recommends having brainstorming sessions with others. For instance, joining forces with other members of your team can help generate ideas you never would have come up with on your own.

In order to come up with top-notch ideas, you need to get serious about doing your research. Listen to what your audience is saying online and you’ll begin to see what their main areas of interest are.

If you want to make things super easy on yourself, create a reader survey and send it to your email list. This is something you could do on a yearly basis, allowing you to shape your content plan and even the types of offerings you provide. This takes the guesswork out of figuring out what your audience wants since they’ll be able to tell you directly.

The more you talk to your audience, the better chance you’ll stand at developing content ideas they’ll love. Try having conversations with them one-on-one in the DMs or in Facebook groups, for example. You can even invite some to have a private Zoom chat for more extensive market research.

Setting up Google Alerts for hot topics in your niche is a great way to stay on top of what others in your industry are discovering. Then, you can potentially put your own spin on things by adding a new perspective.

Even more amazing ideas! Looking through your competitor’s posts and reading any comments left by their audience can reveal gaps in your content plan and offerings. Discover where they’re lacking so you can step up to the plate and save the day.

Q3: How can you use social media to source new ideas?

Find some Twitter chats in your niche and see what they’re discussing. Are there certain topics that seem to be really popular? If so, find a way to discuss them on your blog, podcast, or YouTube channel.

Be where your audience is. When you’re active in the same communities they are (like through Twitter chats and Facebook groups), you’ll be able to see the conversations they’re having. You’ll know what questions they’re asking, what they need help with, and so much more.

It’s smart to create Twitter lists that feature some of your favorite creators. See what they’re talking about and if it helps get those creative juices flowing.

Q4: How can you tell if a content idea is worth pursuing?

Masooma shared a resource she created that will help with filtering all of those ideas running through your mind. This is definitely worth checking out!

If an idea comes to mind and you’re not sure if you should pursue it, don’t be afraid to ask. Run a poll via Twitter or Instagram Stories, for example. It’ll help you quickly and easily gauge interest. But like Kushlani said, sometimes you need to trust your gut. If you’re confident an idea is going to be great, go for it.

As Dana said, it’s unrealistic to get feedback on everything you post. That’s why you need to trust the ideas you receive. In time though, it’ll become easier for you to generate ideas and know that they’ll be worthwhile. For now, it never hurts to ask before moving forward.

Q5: How should you get feedback on your ideas?

To gain feedback on ideas, try sharing polls where people can quickly vote with a simple yes or no. In a matter of hours, you’ll have a good idea if it’s a hit or not.

If you do set out to ask for feedback, prepare yourself for what you may hear. On the internet, people aren’t always kind with their responses. Know that you may get some harsh criticism in return, so don’t let it get you down. Instead, learn from it.

You really can’t go wrong with a survey, but if you want to take it up a notch, select a few survey respondents to hop on a private Zoom call. This will allow you to do some in-depth market research.

Q6: How can you prioritize your content ideas?

Masooma suggests prioritizing ideas based on feedback and time demands. Are there certain topics that your audience is dying to have you talk about? You may want to bump those to the top of the list.

Figure out where your content gaps are. What is your audience interested in learning about that you haven’t yet covered? It would be smart to prioritize those topics as you want to deliver exactly what they’re searching for.

You may even want to prioritize based on your schedule. If you’re in the midst of a busy season, you may opt to create content that’s quicker and easier to bring to life. You’ll also want to consider the relevancy of the topics at hand. If they’re evergreen, you’re able to talk about them whenever. However, timely topics will need to be discussed as soon as possible before the moment passes.

Q7: How do you choose which content format is right for your brand and audience?

Ask! Share a poll on social media or include this question in a survey you send out. Ask your audience what their favorite kind of content to consume is. This will let you know where to direct most of your time and effort.

Besides considering your audience’s interests, it’s also smart to consider which platforms allow you to shine. Are you a great writer? Go for blogging. If you love to speak and interview others, podcasting may be for you. Your content should also be a joy to create and should showcase your talents.

Andrea agrees that it’s important to know your strengths. Don’t force yourself to do something because you feel like you have to. Play to your strengths and people will pick up on the passion and joy that comes through in your work.

Again, it’s a combination of knowing your audience and knowing yourself. Like Dana said, you want to be able to use your voice to the best advantage. Which type of content allows you to do just that?

It’s also a good idea to investigate your analytics. If you’ve already been experimenting with different types of content, the data will tell you what’s really popular.

And as Jim said, it’s always worth a try. If you think you’d like to experiment with a new content format, give it a go. You won’t know if it works for you until you give it a shot. See how it feels for you and if your audience is interested.

Q8: What are some smart ways to repurpose your content to gain more traction?

There are so many ways to repurpose your content, but one smart way is to turn blogs, videos, and podcasts into multiple social media posts. They could be quotes, tips, etc. to give people a taste at what the full piece of content is like.

Another smart move is to create a blog post that’s a transcript of your video or podcast. This way, if people prefer to read over watching or listening, they can do so.

Interested in joining #ContentWritingChat? We host our Twitter chat on the first Tuesday of every month at 10 AM Central. Follow @ExpWriters to stay updated.

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