How to get out of a content creation rut

How to get out of a content creation rut - desk set up with flowers, gold lamp, books, laptop and glasses

We’ve all been there, no matter how hard you try, you just cannot find the inspiration needed to create new, relevant pieces of content. It could be for social media, your next blog, email newsletter, an online resource, or something else. Sometimes, you have lots to say in your head that you can’t get down on paper, into something visual, or perhaps your mind is blank. Since I know that this struggle is all too real, I’ve given you a list of go-to sources of inspiration that help me to overcome writer’s block.

Look at your customers & clients

Did you know that 51%* of consumers will unfollow a brand if they post irrelevant content? Harsh, isn’t it? But, through effectively knowing your audience and what content they want to see, you can avoid being part of this statistic. 

 

Tools such as Google Analytics and Hootsuite enable you to see who is viewing your content, what has been popular and what hasn’t really struck a chord with your audience. By knowing facts about the demographics of your audience and what they are engaging with, you can start to map out a story as to what they are interested in and (more importantly) what they want to see. 

 

An assessment of your previous performance (both on social media and via your website) can also highlight whether there are relationships between certain types of post and website traffic and conversion. If you are lucky enough to find that certain pieces of content result in an increased spike, then you are on your way to a winning formula to determine the themes you can repeat in the future. If your previous content analytics don’t come up with the obvious, there’s plenty more you can do to boost inspiration for content…

Complete a competitor analysis

If you’re stuck for inspiration then consider conducting a content audit of your competitors. This kind of analysis is a key component in increasing your market differentiation and unique selling points, which you can use to guide your content creation. Look at their social media profiles, emails, blogs. Ask yourself: what are they doing well and what are they ignoring? If you find what they aren’t doing, you can choose to become an ‘expert’ voice in this field and build content ideas around this. 

 

 

If the gaps don’t reveal anything useful to you, a social media audit can reveal topics which are relevant to your field, so if you haven’t already, you can start to write about them and put your own spin on things. Make sure you are picking topics that support your objectives, are relevant to your audience, and don’t just do a ‘copy and paste’ as the key thing here is to ensure you stand out in the market.

Assess the trends

If it’s a conversation that you want to create, then try writing about trending topics. Sometimes it’s as simple as writing a tweet which includes a trending hashtag, but at other times it is more considered. Tools such as Google Trends and Brandwatch provide you with a comprehensive list of what people are talking about. 

 

However, it is important to note that, if you choose to engage with these topics, you ensure your contributions are valuable: don’t just post for the sake of it. Instead, think about whether the topic is in line with your brand personality, or whether your target audience will want you to see you engaging with it. 

 

Similarly, just because your audience is engaging with it, it doesn’t mean they are engaging with it for good reason – so make sure you understand the sentiment behind the engagement before posting.

Consider the business objectives

All businesses are guided by a reason for existence: no business is meaningless or directionless. So why not use this as a source of inspiration? Take a look at the overarching objectives that your business is wanting to achieve, this could be the yearly departmental objectives, or it could be as general as what is stated in your mission statement. 

 

Consider how you could make a contribution to this. For instance, if your business wants to increase consumer engagement, then why not start a user-generated campaign, or encourage users to converse with you. Or, if your business’ mission statement is to strive for a sustainable future, then why not inform your followers of ways to incorporate sustainability into their day-to-day living? 

Take inspiration from national days

National days, weeks and months range from the well-known and celebrated, to the obscure and more niche. Regardless of their novelty status, they provide the perfect opportunity to showcase your brand’s personality and start conversations. A quick browse through the National Day Calendar will show you that virtually anything has a day allocated to it, meaning that there is ample opportunity to generate content. 

 

Once you have planned which national days you want to engage with, you can start to think of how you can link your brand to it (think promotions, selling a particular product/service, or simply sharing relevant pictures). However, be mindful of the amount of national days you celebrate because, in this case, less is more – consistently promoting these days may shift the attention away from your core brand.

In summary...

Hopefully I have given you some starters on how to overcome writer’s block. Remember, the key is taking inspiration from other sources as well as looking inside on your business: you don’t need to reinvent the wheel to be successful, but you do have to be relevant.

 

*Information taken from Pure Content at: https://purecontent.com/latest-news/51-of-consumers-will-unfollow-brands-if-they-post-irrelevant-content/ 

Danielle Slater - On The Dot Marketing