If your business depends on website traffic, then you know how important it is to be consistently producing content that your audience is interested in, content that informs and educates.
Small business owners and solo-preneurs often wonder, “What should I write about that’s relevant to my market?” “What do my followers want to know about?”
If you too are finding it hard to come up with ideas for producing relevant and useful articles or videos for your market, read on.
It is getting increasingly important to establish your voice as an authority within your niche. Your expert knowledge and the solution you provide is the reason people come to your blog or website. This is what builds your online authority.
But the important question remains: how do you find relevant topics that your market is interested to know about? Where do you find ideas to produce quality and unique content on a consistent basis that will drive traffic to your website and increase readership? The following provides 7 quick and easy ways to get great ideas for producing content that your target market wants to know about.
Listen To Your Audience
This is perhaps a simple and free solution but one that sometimes has been neglected. If you want to know what is on your readers’ minds and what they are struggling with then listen to what they say, observe or ask questions and engage with them where they hangout, chat, chill and share.
Listening in and observing is perhaps the most unobtrusive way of gathering information. You’ll be surprised at how much you can learn from paying attention to what others are discussing. Use the following pointers and you are about to get the most revealing and genuine thoughts that are at the top of your market’s mind (and heart) as they rant and rave.
1. Facebook and Google Plus
Your target audience are probably in different Facebook groups or Google Plus communities; specific communities that discusses the very topics that are interesting to them.
Blend into the group, listen in and observe. Get to know what concerns the communities have. Then participate in dialogues and topics that are already taking place on these social platforms. These are usually areas that your audience is most concerned about.
2. On Twitter, you can use hash tags to look for conversations around your niche. You can also make use of Twitter search to see what else is being shared around your niche area. Alltop and Buffer provides lots of good information on what’s hot and what’s trending.
If your business can benefit from networking with other business leaders, then joining a professional group on LinkedIn or reading comments on LinkedIn Influencers’ articles offers another great way to feel the pulse and garner insights into these business leaders’ minds.
As a bonus, if you share your thoughts and expert knowledge on this platform, like-minded professionals may respond to your comments leading to the start of new business connections.
4. Your Blog/Website
If you have your own website or blog you can also get insights from the “comments” section at the end of your blog posts. Before social media flourishes, leaving comments was a popular way for readers to share or response to the blog post they have just created. Although less used today, this is still a good source not to pass over.
And don’t forget to ask your readers’ questions in your blog entries so they are prompted to express their opinions and leave you some engaging and useful feedback.
If comments from your blogs posts is not enough then consider joining forums that are relevant to your niche. This normally has more “technical” or serious discussion on topics relating to your niche and it provides an excellent way for networking too.
While Quora and Warrior Forum are great forums where the latest and hottest topics are discussed, they are of interest to different people. You’ll want to look for forums that are popular and credible in your niche so you get to hear what’s on the mind of your prospects.
These communities are great places for picking up a tip or two for your content creation. Needless to say, these are great places for making and growing new business connections and relationships.
6. Question and Answers
If you have a following you will likely have received questions through emails and direct messages. Spend a moment and common threads will emerge. These are topics your audience are struggling with and will very likely want to read about. Producing content in these areas will be informative and helpful to them
You can also hold special Q&A webinar and public hangouts on airs sessions to address questions your audience has.
One other way to “observe” what your market is telling you is to make use of analytics service. Don’t feel intimidated by the complexity of analytics services – they’re designed to be intuitive and easy to read. They can tell you which of your pages are the most popular with your readers.
If you own a WordPress website, a free service you can use is Google Analytics. It gives you basic information such as which pages on your sites are most frequently visited or how long visitors stay on your site.
If you would observe and listen in regularly, you will be able to find out topics that are of great interest to your market, questions that they really want to know about or solutions they are seeking after. Keep these in a list or jot these down in a journal and you’ll have enough topics for your blog posts, videos or podcast.
This list is in no way exhaustive. What other ways are you using now that are working great for you?
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And if you are a visual person, then this image or simple info graphic will be helpful as it lays out the above in a clear and easy to digest manner.