Welcome to Marketing Monday where I give you tips and tricks for being your own content marketer. This week’s post is all about how to avoid getting stuck in a rut with your content marketing.
I started writing this blog about a year and a half ago, and at the time, I was energized by the prospect and full of ideas, which I think is pretty normal.
Lately I’ve been feeling more lethargic. Writing these blog posts has become less exciting and more of a chore as I’ve struggled to come up with topics, which I also think is pretty normal. The honeymoon phase ends and we all encounter writer’s block at some point in our careers.
But Google doesn’t care if you have writer’s block. I’ve written again and again about the need for consistency in your content marketing, which is why pulling yourself out of a rut is imperative, so I’ve come up with a few ideas to help you do just that:
Repurpose Your Content
I did this a few times over the summer when I know a lot of people are on vacation. Holiday weekends also tend to see a decrease in activity, so I didn’t waste any of my creative juices on writing new posts that wouldn’t get as much visibility. Instead I republished some of my oldest blog posts. I touched up a few of them so they’d be fresh and relevant, but most of them I was able to just reschedule as they were. Finding out when your audience tends to be less active online can be a great time to take a break.
When it comes to repurposing content, you also might want to consider republishing them in different formats. If you have some high-performance blog posts, consider turning them into videos or podcasts, or breaking them down into bite-sized nuggets for your social media feed. Get creative with the different ways you can spread your message.
Do Your Research
While creativity is great, and even necessary for an effective content strategy, it can only take you so far without research to guide it. In today’s Digital Age, we have a wealth of information at our fingertips, which means you don’t have to guess what interests your audience or where they’re looking for information. There are online tools available to tell you all that. Use them.
Engage with Your Audience
While the right tools can be invaluable, nothing beats just outright asking your audience what kinds of content they want to see. There are a few benefits to this that the online tools don’t provide:
1. Your audience will love you for it.
People don’t just want to be talked at, they want to engage with you. So don’t just tell them what they should be reading/watching/listening to, ask them what kinds of content interest them and how and where they want that content. Not only will you get a wealth of information, you’ll also get a loyal fan base who appreciate the fact that you cared enough to build a relationship with them instead of treating them like a bunch of statistics off a spreadsheet.
2. You’ll get to dig deeper.
You can use all the tools to do all the research and create all the marketing personas, but none of that replaces actually getting to know your audience on a personal level. As you find your niche (and they find you), you may find that not all of the statistics fit them. While your research might tell you your audience is interested in one thing, if you ask them directly, they might tell you otherwise.
3. It’ll Boost Your Engagement
Asking questions of your audience online is a great way to prompt them to engage with your post, which boosts both your SEO and your organic online visibility.
Think Outside the Box
When you do your research, try thinking beyond your normal sources of inspiration. Normal is what got you into this rut in the first place. So you can continue the same old research methods of checking up on your competition and the standard content curation tricks, or you can think outside the box. Research/inspiration can come from anywhere. It can come from books about your industry, books about another industry, or even fiction books. Watching TV and movies, listening to music, and getting outside for some exercise are all great ways to refresh your mind, get a new perspective and gain fresh inspiration.
Have you experienced a rut? What did you do to get out of it? Anything I forgot to mention here?
Thanks for reading! If you like what you see here, you can sign up for my newsletter at the top of this page to make sure you never miss an update. If you still have questions about content marketing, let’s chat.