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Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Content Creation - What to Write?

I often recommend that people integrate a blog into their website as a great way of getting fast improvement on search engine results. Blogs feed straight into the Google jugular via RSS so they are picked up in minutes rather than weeks. Blogs inject life into static websites. And you can cross-promote your posts on social media, giving you lots more hits on Google.

Blog Inspiration

But so many business owners say, "Fine, but what will I write about?" It's more a state of mind: inspiration is all around you - when you're looking for it. But it's often easier to piggy-back on others with a short reaction piece - we all stand on the shoulders of others, so you might as well pick some of the best in your field.

Content Curation

This is where content curation comes in: where you pick out the best pieces of information you come across. Twitter plus can help enormously here if you commit to only following very good people in your field on Twitter. Then set up your own newspaper on linked to your Twitter account. That will give you a daily round up of the content contained in the links posted by people you're following on Twitter (so you need to be following useful people). You can either treat that as your daily self training and inspiration dose, or you can also set to tweet a link to your newsletter once or twice daily, keeping your Tweet count up on days when you are busy and impressing people with a rather nice-looking daily newsletter. Do that often enough and you become known for finding useful articles - in other words, just like a museum curator that only displays the best, you do that with content in your field. Congratulations. You have become a content curator. When you find something of interest, either re-write it or react to it. You could also post a short reply to a piece on the writer's blog supporting their point of view, with a link back to your blog for extra SEO benefit?

Turn Questions into Blog Posts

If setting up a newspaper is all too much, there's lots of other triggers for blogs. One great time-saving wheeze is to answer questions from customers or potential customers with a blog post. That means you can save loads of time by referring others to that answer - or refining the answer -  if there are questions that people keep asking you. This allows you to build up enough Qs & As to form a FAQs (frequently answered questions - with answers) page on your website.
Why not do the same with questions you find yourself answering repeatedly on forums? Just copy and paste your answers into your blog, remove any specific individual details, and you have another post and potential candidate for your FAQs page. And you can re-use bits for social media posts.

Other Sources of Blog Inspiration

Another option is to keep a copy of interesting snippets that you find in Evernote, then they'll be available online via your smartphone, tablet or laptop as well as your PC. 
Or for instant high quality inspiration, run a Google news searches on key issues in your sector. Just remember not to directly copy any material or you'll be breaching copyright. But there's no reason why you can't either re-write parts or write a reaction to a published piece. If the news piece is online and allows comments and linkbacks, you could use part of your reaction as a comment, then use social media buttons to spread the word.

Call in PHPR?

And if you become too busy to do any of that, isn't it time you talked to us to keep your content flowing? 

PR blog posted by Penny Haywood Calder at PHPR Ltd, Edinburgh, UK. URL: TV Channel on YouTube: Ltd on LinkedInFollow PennyHaywood on Twitter

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