How I create content ideas

I want to share the top 3 places I search when I want to find out what content my customers (you guys) want me to create.

Blank page syndrome is where you know you need to create something, but the creativity and ideas are just…stuck.

Some people feel that if they just had one good idea, the content would flow out of them.

Others feel that no matter what idea they have, they can’t turn it into words or something people can consume.

  1. What’s worked in the past?
  2. What are people searching for?
  3. What problem do I solve?

What’s worked in the past?

If you’ve ever done any content before, from blog posts to YouTube videos, podcast interviews or emails, have a look over what got a great response before.

This is a great place to start when creating new content – repeat what’s already worked.

That is literally the market telling you that it was popular.

I used to really struggle with the idea of “repetition”. It just sounded counter-intuitive to me.

I thought the idea of repeating myself and creating the same content/topic over and over would make me boring.

And if it was the most popular piece I’d ever done, then surely I’d definitely have to do something different, because more people had seen that!

You shouldn’t change your message when you’re bored of it. You shouldn’t change your message when your team is bored of it. You shouldn’t change your message even when your CUSTOMERS are bored of it. Only change your message when your accountant is bored of it.

Chances are you haven’t saturated your market yet and if people liked hearing about a particular topic once, they’ll love hearing it again (just look at the Fast And The Furious franchise).

What are people searching for?

Again – don’t overcomplicate this. I’m not going to tell you how to use or YouTube suggestions.

There are hundreds of tools and videos out there that show you how to see what people are searching for.

While I wouldn’t exclusively rely on SEO data for your content process, it basically does tell you exactly what people are looking for.

It’s also a really easy way to see what’s popular and trending.

Another way to use this method is to take what people are searching for and answer it from other angles.

For example, if “how to build a website from scratch” is a trending topic/popular search term, you can add different prefixes and suffixes to change the tone.

  • How I built this customer website from scratch (for under $100)
  • How one customer built their website in under 2 hours
  • Here’s how Ryan Deiss builds a website in under 24 hours
  • DO NOT EVER build your own website from scratch
  • Why you absolutely should build a website from scratch

What problem do I solve?

Finally, you’re already in the content creation game, you just don’t know it yet. 

What is your answer to “the biggest problem my customers have is…”?

Hint: it’s not they don’t have a website or they don’t have a marketing strategy.

A problem is something your customers lay awake at night worrying about. It’s what they stress over and feel bad about.

No one has ever woken up in the night, sweating, worrying that “I need a marketing consultant!”

Their problems are real, tangible and probably pretty basic:

  • I’m not getting enough customers through the door
  • I never have any time to myself/away from the business
  • I’m terrified of my financial situation
  • I have no idea why we’re not growing as fast as I want
  • My staff take up so much of my time
  • I’m not happy with the business

What do they dread seeing/not seeing in the morning? What do they truly wish was different?

That’s the problem you’re solving and that is exactly what you should be asking your customers/list/followers/subscribers.

“Hey {{contact.first_name}}! 

What’s the #1 problem in your business right now?”

They will tell you – listen to them.

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Mike Killen

Mike is the world's #1 sales coach for marketing funnel builders. He helps funnel builders sell marketing funnels to their customers. He is the author of From Single To Scale; How single-person, small and micro-businesses can scale their business to profit. You can find him on Twitter @mike_killen.