How to Produce Content on a Slow News Day
Writer’s block happens to the best of us. It could either be because of topic fatigue, which occurs when you’ve exhausted practically all your knowledge about a certain topic, or it’s really just a slow news day, and nothing interesting seems to happen. But giving in to these negative factors is a big mistake, as producing content on a regular basis is crucial to getting SEO and social media love.
In terms of SEO, studies show that Google sends 23% more traffic to websites that constantly publish content, so skipping your regularly scheduled article or post is a no-no. Furthermore, as Hubspot puts it, “SEO content is the gift that keeps on giving. When you create a web page, it’s indexed in search engines and will return as a result in the search engine results pages (SERPs) for years to come. So if you write, say, a blog post -- especially if it’s evergreen content (content that remains relevant for a long time) -- your few hours of effort writing and optimizing that content can continue to drive traffic and leads for years. That’s some pretty good ROI.”
Good content can also give you a boost in the social media department. Putting out fresh posts on a constant and regular basis gives your existing fans and followers reasons to visit your site—and even better—share what you’ve written. When your content is shared, it gets in front of a bigger audience, increasing your chances of gaining new customers. Additionally, since social networks are very fluid websites that constantly bump down old content below the fold, not publishing new things can be detrimental to your social media strategy. The more you wait on pushing new content, the more your old posts get buried deeper and deeper in news feeds and streams.
So now that we’ve established the importance of content to Internet marketing, here are some tips to help you publish posts and articles on a regular basis and turn you into a content producing machine:
Re-purpose old posts – Timeless content can look good as new with a little repackaging. Go back to your old blog posts and try to find anything useful that you’ve written to see if you can still apply any of your old articles to the present day. Pick out a specific piece of advice or statement and try to relate it to current events to give a new spin to it. Did you publish a list of tips in the past? Consider picking just one tip and create a lengthy article out of it. Don’t think that people will get tired of reading about the same topic over and over again. As long as it’s still relevant and you didn’t copy the old text word for word, you should be fine. The World Wide Web is huge, and chances are, there are people out there that haven’t read about what you have to say.
Interview other people – Take the time to reach out to individuals in your industry—they can be colleagues, customers, thought leaders, or fellow entrepreneurs—and see if you can take them out for coffee so that you can pick their brain. If you’re reaching out via online channels, check if they have time for a Skype call or chat. If they agree, use that as an opportunity to interview them and publish what they had to say on your website. Getting someone to share insights on a given topic is extremely useful both for you and your audience. Even if you’ve already written about that particular topic in the past, a different point of view is still worth publishing. Moreover, letting other people to share their thoughts on your blog also has a bonus effect of extended publicity, because they’ll most likely share your blog post on their own social networks.
Grab ideas from your inbox – Look through your old messages and try to find common questions from colleagues and clients. If you notice that you keep getting the same questions time and time again, then those queries could be hot topics in your industry. Why not take the time to produce a blog post out of them? This will not only solve your content problems, it will also save you a lot of time in the future. Once you have that post in place, you’ll be able to direct people to that article whenever you get asked the same questions. This way, you won’t have to repeat yourself over and over again.
Crowdsource – For the uninitiated, crowdsourcing refers to “the practice of obtaining needed services, ideas or content by soliciting contributions from a large group of people, especially from the online community.” In other words, instead of looking for ideas using natural means like search engines and news sites, you could take your topic-hunting task to the crowd. Social networks are great hubs for opinions and serve as crowdsourcing havens for Internet marketers. The next time you feel like you don’t have anything new to say about a particular topic, head to the social media scene. Quora, Google+, and LinkedIn are especially useful crowdsourcing websites because users there tend to provide more detailed and intelligent comments. Once you get answers from people, you’ll be able get material for your article. Be sure to give responders a heads up when you publish your post, so that they can share it to their networks themselves.
Are you absolutely sure it’s a slow news day? – Ask yourself this question before giving up on writing content. You may think that nothing new or interesting is happening around you, but chances are, you’re just not looking hard enough. Visit industry websites that you haven’t checked out in a while and see what they have going on there. Is there an event happening in your area? Then consider dropping by and see if there’s anything you can gather that’s worth writing about. You can also check out the trending topics and articles on social sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Google+ and use those topics as a springboard for your next blog post.
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