Marketing is a buzzkill for readers, a necessity for writers. The days of billboards, banner ads, and flyers stuffed under windshield wipers are at an end, and every struggling business owner knows content champions brands. But between press releases, media posts, and blogs, how do you decide on what to write?
The Internet is bursting with inspirational resources and mind-reader outlets for tapping into what your target audience wants. But as you surely know, no published piece is worth its salt unless it is well-written, informative, and intriguing. A company’s readers are high-maintenance and require a journalistic spin on every piece they scroll through. Images help articles pop off the page, infographics require a second glance, and a well-formatted blog just dies for a read. But getting that piece out to pasture is a different ballgame. Here are a few Web-source hot spots to go to for trending content inspiration:
As always, Google takes the cake for trend tracking. The site allows you to see what is popular (yes, like a prom queen campaign) for search queries. If you check out “Actors” today, you’ll probably find Miley Cyrus twerking up to the top alongside Justin Timberlake. When the next ESPN highlight exposes an athlete scandal, a player’s name will undoubtedly climb as well. You can refine keyword searches to see what people are looking for and tailor blogs around them.
In terms of “content creation,” phrases like content management, Web design content, and free content are high. You can also geographically see that “content creation” is big in Washington and along the East Coast.
Like every trending topic that is cosmically related to your business, it’s crucial to tie together your brand’s messaging with relevant content. Weaving together LeBron James, 9/11, and The Bible only works to hurt your blog if the info doesn’t transition seamlessly.
Google News is another place to see what’s happening on the Web. Google+ also has a “What’s Hot” section that shows trending hashtags, searches, and topics.
BuzzFeed neatly packages news, entertainment, and lifestyle content in its trending “Hot” section. The site generates millions of views and social media shares every day, and if you can find an angle on a story go ahead and tap into the topic.
reddit can help you understand what the cyber side of life is interested in. When you’re trying to string together industry info with a hot topic, you should use a combination of these resources to find a platform to work from.
Earlier this year, Facebook opened up hashtag and Open Graph features. The upcoming analytical search tracking and conversation move is most likely a blowback to how easy it is to find trends on Twitter. “Trending Topics” is still in the testing phases, but forward thinking companies (i.e. your company) should keep an eye on it.
There’s no better method for finding what’s hot and what’s not than actively looking for industry shifts. Check out your competitors’ blogs and social media accounts and try to link together emerging topics and offer up a comprehensive piece before someone else does. Internet success is all about timeliness and heavy-hitting content. As long as you’re writing fast, high-quality stuff, you shouldn’t have a problem implementing trends. Who knows, maybe you are the next big E-thing.
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