The struggle is real when it comes to finding good, shareable content for your business marketing efforts. Even if you already understand content marketing, and know what makes for quality content, you still need to find great topics to cover – and that can be tough.
Here are some of the ways I’ve been able to ferret out valuable content.
Connecting with your co-workers can be tough, whether you have a team of 5 or 500. But if you want to identify great stories to tell, getting to know your team is key. This is especially important for staff who are outside of your area of focus, as they are often sources of the best information!
A commonly-recommended tactic to begin sourcing content from your team is to talk to the employees who field customer questions/complaints. Ask them what questions they regularly receive and you’ll easily find topics that will be valuable to your customers. It might be a “Top 5 Questions We Get About Widgets” blog post or a more in-depth video demonstrating how to troubleshoot your whatsits, based on their feedback.
To go beyond answering FAQs, you should make a consistent effort to:
You don’t have the be a subject matter expert to know what stories are worth telling. When I’ve worked in marketing for technical industries, I would regularly check trade magazines, industry blogs and set up Google Alerts on topics that were relevant to our businesses. When you come across a trend or piece of legislation that is interesting to you – run it by some of your subject matter experts to see if it has legs.
The more you do this, the more you’ll be able to naturally identify topics that can inspire content.
I can’t put enough emphasis on this – the easier you make it to work with you, the more easily you’ll find stories. Asking a subject matter expert to whip up a blog or even produce an outline on a piece of content (especially if they don’t enjoy writing) can be like pulling teeth. They have their own work to do, so if you want their help you shouldn’t add anything time-consuming to their plate.
Here are the steps I like to follow after a source has presented a valid topic, or validated a topic I suggested:
When your coworkers see that it’s easy to work with you, they’ll be more likely to throw ideas your way. You just need to be willing to put in the work.
You’re going to hit a content rut. When you do, consider some of these alternatives to keep the information flowing:
Bottom line here: make an effort to stay in the loop at your company, seek out content, make yourself easy to work with and get creative when you hit a content wall! If you’re still struggling with where to start, give us a shout to see how we can give you a content jump start.
With ten years of marketing and communications experience in a variety of industries, including manufacturing, nonprofit, automotive and accounting, Rachel puts her diverse background to good use by helping our clients find their voice. Rachel loves a good pun and has an advanced affinity for alliteration.