28 Feb 23 | 09:44:39
Content is king, but constantly having to come up with new content ideas can be exhausting: How do you keep your ideas fresh and exciting? Are there any fool proof methods for coming up with content ideas?
Don’t worry, we’re here to help!
We’re going to you through the sort of content you should be posting and give you some tips on how to generate ideas for it.
One of the easiest ways, and also most important ways, to come up with content ideas is to consider the questions that your audience is asking. What is it that they want to know? What are they likely to be searching for online? What will lead them through their buyers’ journey?
You can be the one that is there to answer their questions, like a knight in shining armour. Anticipating the needs of your audience and being ready to address them is how you build trust, which is fundamental for leads becoming customers.
Marcus Sheridan writes about the importance of this in his book They Ask, You Answer. It’s one of our favourite reads here at Podymos, and it’s a stance on content marketing that we absolutely stand by.
So, how do you find out what questions your audience are asking?
What better way to understand your customers than to speak to the people who interact with them every day? This might be your sales team, commercial team or maybe your marketing team. To launch a truly successful content marketing plan, you really need to have a level of enthusiasm and dedication from your whole team. The best ideas come from working together.
Your sales and customer facing teams are likely to be faced with the same questions from customers time and time again, so imagine if you were able to answer those questions before they even asked them? All of these questions make a great starting point for content.
If you haven’t managed to come up with enough ideas by talking to your team (which is unlikely!) there are other methods of discovering the questions your audience is asking.
Search engines and SEO keyword tools can tell you a lot about what is popular online. Keyword research can give you an idea of popular topics, whilst Google’s related searches and search predictions can give you a closer look into how people are searching for those keywords.
At the bottom of search engine results pages you will see a list of related results.
When typing a query into Google, it will autocomplete to show other popular searches.
Social listening is all about being active in your industry on social media. What are the trending topics? What are people discussing and debating?
By following closely, and getting actively involved in talking to your audience, you will be able to glean the topics that matter to them and what questions they’re asking.
A great way to come up with content ideas is to sit down and consider the journey of your ideal customer. Think about the stages they are likely to go through and the questions they might have along the way. What matters to them? What is going to help them decide to convert?
Ensuring your audience can find the answers to these questions is what will expedite their buyer’s journey and build trust with you instead of your competitors.
In They Ask, You Answer, Sheridan introduces “the big 5”, a set of topics that all businesses should be writing about. You can use the big 5 to quickly and easily create an impressive number of content ideas. You can use the big 5 as a starting point, creating a table and populating each topic with content ideas.
The big 5 are as follows.
Many companies are reluctant to discuss their costs and pricing, afraid that it will drive away customers, or reveal too much to competitors.
Whilst these are valid concerns, it’s worth considering what harm this would actually cause to your business.
Customers will find out about pricing at one point or another, so what’s the harm in them excluding themselves early on, rather than spending time and energy on converting them when they’re not appropriate anyway?
In terms of competitors, you may be worried that they will be able to undercut you, but this shouldn’t concern you so long as you’re confident in what you’re offering and that you’re doing it better than your competitors. Furthermore, if you’re talking about price and they aren’t, who is more likely to win the customer in the end?
Addressing costs in your content is so important when it comes to building trust with your audience. Instead of keeping it hidden away, you are being completely open and transparent, which will only win you favour.
Another of your main topics should be based around the problems your audience may be facing, but also the problems they might find with your product or service.
When you address problems up front, you are probably also able to offer solutions. Not only does acknowledging problems show a high level of transparency, it shows that you genuinely care about the needs of your audience.
When you talk about problems and are able to suggest solutions, your audience will naturally be more inclined to trust you.
Last time you were searching for an offering of some sort, it’s likely that you used the word “best” to get the information you were looking for. As humans, we naturally gravitate towards that word, because it’s strong and it’s final.
When we put our time into something, we want it to be right, so we search for the best.
This might refer to products, to companies or even to best practices. What information could your company offer the “best” information on?
The internet has made it so easy to find out information that people have naturally become more picky when it comes to making financial decisions.
When people invest in something, be it a product or a service, they want to know how it compares to what else is out there and if it delivers everything they need.
Being the one to provide that information develops you as a trusted source. You demonstrate that you know what you’re talking about and therefore can be trusted.
Buyers always wanted to know what they’re signing up for before making a purchase, they want to know that they’re making the right decision and often, hearing from someone else who has tried what they’re considering will help them to decide.
Reviews are the equivalent to word of mouth, which is extremely powerful. Reviewing your own offerings and being completely honest can help to build trust. You may also be able to use customer reviews to create content.
We’re not suggesting copying any content from your competitors, in fact when you explore their content, you may find that they are focusing on creating content that doesn’t encourage the customer journey. This is also referred to as “fluff”, because it is just filling a space, rather than actually helping you to achieve tangible results.
You can look to your competitors to find what they’re missing and take inspiration from what they’re posting about. Are they talking about topics you hadn’t considered? It’s great to explore that. Are you looking at their site and thinking that something is missing? You can fill that gap on your own site.
Whatever you do, whether it’s taking inspiration from their content or ensuring that your content is in no way like theirs, you need to ensure that what you’re doing is better. That means focuses on producing high-quality content that will convert, rather than content creation for the sake of being seen. In summary, each piece of content must help move the buyer through their journey. If it doesn’t it’s most likely not worth writing.
If you’re really stumped for ideas (this shouldn’t happen if everyone is involved in your content planning, as new questions always come up from customers), why not look back at your old stuff? You may wonder if that’s actually a good use of your time – surely if you’ve already done it, you have nothing to add?
That isn’t true at all, in fact, refreshing and repurposing your old content is one of the best things you can do for the health of your website. Updating old content is considered a “quick win” for SEO as it shows search engines that you’re not just posting and forgetting about your content, you’re keeping it fresh so that it is genuinely valuable to people.
Look back at old articles and see how you could improve them or maybe you have some longer articles that could be split out into more specific detailed articles.
You can also repurpose old articles, creating videos and social media posts from them.
Basically, not all your content ideas have to be brand new, some of the best ideas have already happened and just need to be built upon.
As you can see, creating content is quite a big undertaking. Coming up with new ideas can seem overwhelming at times, but it really doesn’t have to be once you boil it down to addressing the needs of your audience and moving them along in your journey.
Consider idea creation as an ongoing process, rather than a stop-start process that you go through every couple of weeks. It can be something that is constantly going on in the background, every time a member of your team talks to a customer, every time you see a relevant interaction on social media. All these small instances could be just the start of a fully-fledged piece of content, or even several pieces of content.
Do you want to communicate more effectively with HCPs and patients? Do you want to be able to deliver high-quality, converting content as part of your larger multichannel marketing strategy? You’ve come to the right place.
Podymos is a healthcare marketing agency, specialising in downstream Medical Device marketing and content creation.
We’re more expensive than non-specialised agencies and freelance teams because we only work in the Medical Device space so we have specialist knowledge and experience that other agencies may not be able to offer you.
If you want high-quality, compliant campaigns that help achieve your business goals, we’d love to hear from you. Simply leave us your contact details below and we’ll get back to you very soon for a no obligation chat.
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