You have probably already heard the phrase “Content is king,” but do you really understand what that means and how it impacts your business/blog?
Take Twitter as an example: more than 90% of surveyed users plan to buy something from a business they follow, and nearly 70% have bought something because of tweet. Also, great content can secure you with a better position in the search rankings.
However, according to CMI, more than 60% of marketers find it challenging to create engaging content, while 60% of the surveyed marketers say that they can’t do it consistently.
Since we all know that most great stories start with a single great idea, the trick question is: where to find that idea?
Well, online communities, such as Quora and Reddit, have proven themselves to be valuable gold mines for content creators seeking something that will spark their curiosity and imagination. Here’s how to become a “miner” yourself on each of those platforms.
1. How to Generate Content Ideas with Reddit
Also known as “the front page of the Internet,” Reddit is one of the best places online to find useful information and knowledge on just about any subject. And the funniest thing about Reddit is that people tend to forget how huge it is. With over 330 million monthly unique visitors and over 18 billion views per month, Reddit is gigantic.
Unlike most places online, Reddit contains information you can actually use, thanks to its active community which encourages quality and value. Famously, this community is pretty strict when it comes to spam and shameless self-promotion. This is one of the reasons why the platform has exploded in popularity in the last few years.
The biggest indicator of that is 1.2 million subreddits on Reddit. Back in 2008, the platform sported a little over 10,000 subreddits, as shown in the graph below:
So, how do you mine Reddit for content ideas then? It’s pretty simple: you pick a niche you want to cover, which will be determined by the type of business or website you run, and then simply browse the most relevant subreddits.
Let’s say that your niche is blogging and that you are looking for new blog posts ideas. You would use Reddit’s search bar to enter “blogging,” as you would in any other search engine. You’ll notice that one of the search results offered is the r/Blogging subreddit. After clicking on it, you’ll be presented with a ton of different threads.
To narrow down your search, simply type “how to” into the subreddit’s search bar. Now, in order to access those threads which provide the most value, try sorting them according to the number of comments, as shown in the image below:
Also, it would help to think like someone who’s trying to find a solution to a problem they have. This means searching for the most common phrases inside each of the relevant subreddits, such as:
- Need help with...
- Any tips on…
- Can I get help…
- Any suggestions
- Advice on...
You get the idea. An even better way to use Reddit would be to become a regular contributor, build a reputation, and then link back to your blog, website, or social media when you have the opportunity. Apart from content ideas, you can also mine Reddit for long-tail keywords, which can be found inside thread titles.
2. How to Generate Content Ideas with Quora
Although Quora is somewhat different than Reddit, since it’s a Q&A website, and Reddit more like a massive forum, they are similar in at least one aspect, and that’s the number of monthly active users. Quora is right behind Reddit with an audience of over 300 million users, which means you should also consider it a viable advertising platform.
Another similarity is the quality of content you’ll come across on Quora, as the majority of answers are written by either experts or at least people who have decent knowledge on the subject in question.
You can browse Quora for content ideas in two different ways. The first one would be to simply enter your keyword. The second would be to enter your keyword (we will use “blogging” again), and then select the “Topic” option from the list, which will take you to the category featuring that particular topic.
It’s sort of like Quora’s equivalent to subreddits. From there, you’ll be able to browse questions and answers, as well as to explore “Related Topics,” which can be found on the left-hand side of the screen. We suggest looking up individual authors as well, by clicking on the “Most Viewed Writers” tab, as shown here:
What’s great about Quora is the way its content is written. While threads on Reddit are usually made up of short answers, here they are written as informative and useful articles.
That makes Quora not only a great place to find ideas, but also to expand your knowledge on any of the subjects you come across. You can even use the content for your own research or reference it in one of your blog posts.
As in the case of Reddit, it would be good if you could become an active contributor because you would be able to drive traffic to your blog, website, or whichever channel you have.
3. How to Generate Content Ideas with YouTube
YouTube doesn’t really need an introduction since pretty much everyone reading this is familiar with how it works. However, there is one thing that a lot of people tend to overlook when it comes to YouTube, and that’s the fact that it’s the second-largest search engine in the world. This means you will practically never run out of ideas for your content.
And if you’re thinking “Wait a minute, I’m not producing video content,” well, nobody said you have to. Find ideas on YouTube that are relevant to your industry, and then create whichever form of content is suitable for your business, brand, or audience.
You can look for content ideas in pretty much the same way you would using Google. Again, we will use the keyword “blogging,” and then filter the results based on relevance. It should look something like this:
To be perfectly honest, YouTube’s suggestions based on the videos you’re watching are not the greatest at the moment, so we would advise you to rely on keywords and phrases as much as you can.
Another thing you may want to take advantage of are YouTube comments. Although there is a ton of useless comments, you can sort them based on the number of likes. That way, you’ll often come across constructive feedback and suggestions which can be turned into content ideas. You can apply the same approach if you have your own YouTube channel.
4. How to Generate Content Ideas with Facebook
Although you may come across an idea or two while browsing your Facebook timeline, it’s not something you can rely on for inspiration on a regular basis, simply because there is too much clutter.
However, you can look up relevant Facebook Groups and join them. There you will be able to find experts and influencers sharing their knowledge, thus enabling you to expand your own, as well as regular users looking for answers to their problems and pain points.
You can use their questions to create blog posts or articles which you will then share within the group. You will grow your authority in the process, as well as drive traffic and spread awareness about your brand or business.
For instance, if you’re interested in knowing more about digital marketing, you may want to check out Marketing Solved. That’s a Facebook group run by social media and marketing expert Kat Sullivan, who has helped over 6,000 business owners with her experience:
It has tons of great info on all things marketing, as well as free stuff and frequent live streaming featuring Sullivan herself responding to questions. She also takes the time to interact with her followers in the comments on a fairly regular basis.
This is a closed group, which means you’ll have to join first in order to be able to view its contents. But there are also plenty of others that are public and visible to anyone with a Facebook account.
Other Options Worth Considering
If you have mined all of the options above and you’re still low on ideas, check out the following resources for more specific inspiration:
- Lists: these allow you to follow all the posts of other users in the same group as yourself in a feed-like format. You can create your own and/or subscribe to existing ones.
- LinkedIn groups: this may be a good option if you’re in the B2B sector. You can also use it to find influencers from your industry.
- Yahoo Answers: they may not be as relevant as before, but they have been around for decades now, so you might be able to dig up something.
Starting a blog is a piece of cake. Even writing the first article is easy. But providing valuable content regularly has proven to be a challenge, even for the most productive marketers.
As with most of our modern-day struggles, the Internet probably has all the answers – you just need to know where and how to look. Hopefully, this article has given you the right guidelines. Now it’s up to you to follow them through.
Author: Natasha Lane