Nearly two-thirds (60%) of B2B marketers say their number-one challenge is producing engaging content. No wonder. It’s not easy to constantly crank out fresh, valuable content day after day. Content burnout is an ongoing risk.
How do you overcome the content marketing blahs to create fun and inspiring content that excites your buyers?
Here are six ideas to inspire you.
1. Talk to people – and really listen to what they have to say.
If you’re in a highly complex industry (such as financial, healthcare or IT) or your business’ products are super technical, spend some time with your internal subject matter experts. Chances are, the enthusiasm they have for their products will rub off on you. This includes the sales people whose job it is to persuade your prospects to purchase. And don’t neglect to go to the source – your customers – and ask them what kind of content captures their attention. What’s getting shared in their social communities? Conversely, what are they tuning out?
2. Get your creative juices flowing.
Many people believe they’re not creative, but the truth is we are all creative. Sometimes we just need to jumpstart our imagination. There are lots of brainstorming techniques to help you do this. My favorite is mind mapping because it’s non-linear, unlike an outline, and allows you to see relationships between ideas and explore new avenues. Tony Buzan explains why mind mapping works so well: “It harnesses the full range of cortical skills — word, image, number, logic, rhythm, colour [sic] and spatial awareness — in a single, uniquely powerful manner. In so doing, it gives you the freedom to roam the infinite expanses of your brain.”
3. Tap into what’s trending.
Get inspiration from the top news stories, sporting events like the Super Bowl or March Madness, holidays and other happenings that can give you a theme to build your content around. It’s easier than ever with the “trending topics” sections on Facebook, Twitter and other social and news sites.
If your strategy supports it, try newsjacking. Marketing strategist David Meerman Scott defines newsjacking as “the art and science of injecting your ideas into a breaking news story, so you and your ideas get noticed.” Scott’s newsjacking tips include using tools like Google News and Twitter. Tweet, post blogs, buy online ads; there are lots of different ways to break into the story and make your brand part of it.
4. Get personal.
Even if your company has a “serious” product, you can always find a personal angle for your content. Tie your theme into a seasonal or sporting event. (See number 3 above.) Maybe you can tie your content into an upcoming major movie release like “Star Trek Beyond” or “The Secret Life of Pets.” Even something as simple as helping your audience get organized at work can make your content enticing. Don’t be afraid to use humor, as long as you can tie the personal topic to your business topic; i.e., make sure the personal is relevant to the professional.
5. Try a different approach.
Stuck in a rut? Feel like you just keep creating the same asset over and over? Overcoming content creation burnout may be as simple as taking an existing infographic and expanding on it so it transforms into a listicle or a G-book. Or go in the opposite direction and take a bland white paper and repurpose it into a series of shorter, more snackable pieces like infographics, checklists, Q&As or motion graphic videos. Or perhaps all that’s needed to add some excitement is a theme that turns simple content into a story.
For more ideas, download our checklist, Reusing Content: Repurpose, Reversion and Refresh Content for Maximum Value.
6. Take advantage of available tools.
It seems like there’s an app for whatever ails you; this is certainly true for content inspiration. Sites like Portent’s Content Idea Generator offer a fun way to brainstorm headlines. Or try Try HubSpot’s Blog Topic Generator to get “a week of blog topics” on any subject. Look for other tools online that will help charge your creative battery and truly inspire you.
Don’t succumb to content creation burnout. Use these tips to rediscover your passion for content creation. Get more details and ideas from our handy checklist.
Watch for my next post with ideas on how to break through the clutter to reach your target audience.