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Best tools to help generate ideas for your content marketing strategy

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Mark Thomson shares his expert ideas for start-ups and those who are planning their content marketing strategy – showing the way forward through use of the varying tools of the trade.
content marketing strategy

It was 2009. I had a notebook opened in front me, and my hand was busy listing down possible topics for my new blog. From each topic, I made sure that I had at least two subtopics branching out of it. This was what I called the ‘tree method’, which I used when I need to ideate on the different content I need to produce for my blog.

Well, times have changed. While I still keep an idea notebook for documentation, I now prefer Evernote. It’s on my mobile, and I am mostly mobile every day, which makes it very convenient.

As a digital content marketer for the past years, I know the importance of producing a huge volume of content to attract your market, and build and sustain a relationship with them. And you have to be very creative and strategic in terms of content development because it calls for diverse content types, relevance of topics and suitability to your target audience. Sounds a bit difficult, right? I’ve had my fair share of obstacles in this field when I was also starting out, so I know how it feels.

Good thing that the internet has made things easier for me in the field of content marketing through the numerous tools available online. I heard you, so I have listed down some of the tools you can use. I have used them all in my line of work, so I know that these are reliable and will do wonders with your creative process!

Here are my recommended tools:

1. Evernote

Yes, this one tops my list because it keeps my thoughts organised.

Sometimes, a lot of ideas buzz in my head and I don’t want to miss or forget any because they prove to be really handy for my job. Thanks to Evernote, I keep track of all of them.

True to its promise, “Your best ideas are always with you and always in sync,” I never had to worry about forgetting my idea notebook. Since it is on mobile, I have my phone everywhere all the time, making all my notes available whenever and wherever I need it.

Found something on Pinterest that inspires an idea? Put it on Evernote. The app allows almost everything to be placed in notes – links, audio recordings, web images, PDF files and even web pages. This way, all idea inspirations are in one place, easily accessible by you, no matter what device you’re on as long as it is synced.

The best part? Evernote allows you to share your notes with a team! Open yourselves to collaboration and seamlessly work your way to a successful project!

2 Answerthepublic.com

I have previously mentioned that a content marketing strategy calls for content that suits your target audience.

The best way to identify that is to get the answers directly from your audience. What topics are they interested in? What do they care about? What do they want to know?

With Answerthepublic.com, you’re one keyword search away from your audience’s interests. It is an online platform that provides you with exactly what people ask around via Google search.

In the website’s homepage, The Seeker will ask you to enter a keyword, choose a language and click on ‘Get Questions’. The most searched questions – ranging from who, what, where, when, why and how – relevant to your keyword will be provided to you in a fun graphic.

From these questions, you can easily come up with thousands of content ideas! The best thing about this is that you know exactly what content or topic would most resonate with your audience, since it is what they want to know!

3. BuzzSumo

Here’s a tool that can work effectively hand-in-hand with Answerthepublic.com.

BuzzSumo gives you the latest updates on the trending contents on your preferred industry and identifies the top personalities and influencers that amplify those contents.

With its highly reliable content insights, you can get data on what kind of content, whose content, and from which domain are being shared the most on all social media networks. Whether the contents you’re scouting were posted a year before or a week before, BuzzSumo has the data for you instantly.

BuzzSumo also provides opportunity to widen your reach by giving you who’s who in the industry you’re monitoring. Moreover, BuzzSumo allows you a sneak into the kind of content they are interested in, enabling you to determine the influencer most relevant to your market and help you connect with them by directly following them at BuzzSumo.

Lastly, BuzzSumo offers you leverage among your competitors because it can alert you to the new content and postings from others. There’s also a competitor analysis available that gives comparison on your content’s performance, vis-a-vis your competitor’s content performance.

4. Tweriod

I highly recommend to all content marketers and strategists to tap Twitter as a platform. Boasting 313million monthly active users, Twitter holds great potential for reaching out to a young and dynamic market – exactly the generation that can drive traffic and sales to your brand.

But this huge volume of active users will not be significant if your content will not reach them. Maximise the opportunity by posting when most of your target audience are online.

With Tweriod, you will know exactly when to post for you to reach a larger audience effectively. It will tell you the hours when most of your followers are online through a graph. It can also track the time slots when you get your peak engagement, whether these are mentions or replies.

Once you become aware of when your target market and followers are active on Twitter, you will also get an idea on how to strategise your content. Would a link share work best? How about an image with call-to-action? Or a video perhaps? Use Tweriod’s data to follow through your conversion funnel.

Want to learn more about marketing on Twitter? Click here.

Content marketing strategy: top takeaway

If there’s one takeaway that I would emphasise in this article, it’s this: idea generation for an effective content marketing strategy does not only involve knowing the topics to be discussed. It also includes the most appropriate content type for your audience, the best times and dates for posting, the platforms most suitable for engagement and influencers who can help you widen your reach.

Have an opinion on this article? Please join in the discussion: the GMA is a community of data driven marketers and YOUR opinion counts.

Mark Thomson
Author: Mark Thomson
Founder at AssignmentMasters | www.assignmentMasters.org

Mark Thomson is a digital marketer and the founder of AssignmentMasters writing help service. With expertise on SEO and content marketing, he has contributed to the success of several start-up websites on technology, finance and even fitness. He enjoys running as a form of disconnection and is currently taking interest in photography as a hobby.

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