Content creation on a regular basis is hard work. It is even more difficult when we try to come up with content out of thin air. We think and think about what we should tell our audience only to waste days or weeks without adding to the conversation.
This is an area that I have struggled, to be honest with you. I have always found the prospect of content creation to be a difficult task. After all, I’m spending all of my available time trying to grow my business. I have to make the decision to work on a project, find a new project or write some awe inspiring content.
In my world, the time set aside to create new content seems to fall to the bottom of the barrel.
I know that quality content generates quality leads, which helps grow the business.
I know that content is king and that it brings in the potential clients.
I know that all the “experts” say you should be writing 3, 4, 5, 7 times a week if you really want to build your authority.
The problem is not knowledge, its content and time.
Joining in a conversation about WordPress or StudioPress is no problem. When I have people ask me questions, I have yet to find myself with “talkers block.” I never seem to fall short of words when it’s time to talk about the subjects that I enjoy.
I do, however seem to struggle with writing about topics.
But what I’ve come to learn, is that it’s really not about writers block. I’ve come to realize that I get bogged down with the topic and can’t seem to get started.
I have found that I sit and stare at a blank screen for way to long, because I don’t what to write about. And it’s not that I don’t know what to say when asked. I just don’t know what people were asking.
You know how you hear things over and over and then one day it just clicks. It’s like your sitting in a dark room feeling for the light switch and all of a sudden someone turns on the lights. It’s like a revelation. All of a sudden you know what to do and it is sooooooooo obvious.
Well, that is what has happened to me.
I have spent the last several years absorbing everything I can about online marketing and content creation from some of the best resources on the internet. I have engaged in forums, asked questions, listened, read and other wise learned from the best. But it wasn’t until two weeks ago that I got it. It clicked. And I understood how to create content on a regular basis without feeling like I had to come up with something out of the blue.
You just steal it!
Now, before you think I’ve gone off the deep end and am condoning plagiarism, I’m not. I think the content you write needs to be original to you. You should never scrape content from another website and pass it off as your own. It is dishonest and will cause more harm than good.
But steal the content!
A couple weeks ago, there was a big story going around about the latest big WordPress hack attempts. I noticed several reputable people talking about it on Twitter and began to investigate. I read a detailed post from the Sucuri blog and I knew I had to make sure my audience was aware of the problem.
I write about WordPress and StudioPress. I have an audience that uses these platforms for their business websites. I believe it is part of my responsibility to them to make sure they know about these kind of issues. It is valuable to my audience and it is important for their websites.
I had a choice.
Either retweet the links and send an email to my audience leading them to the excellent Sucuri post, OR write a post of my own.
I researched what people were saying, I looked at the numbers from reputable blogs and put together my own post about this massive WordPress hack that could potentially effect thousands.
I stole the topic and idea. It was not original to me. It was a relevant story happening right now and it was something that would be very important for my audience to know. So I stole the idea. I took this topic and created an original post for my audience.
So How do You Steal Content?
As I have been working through what I’ve learned, I have three suggestions on how you can steal your next blog post topic.
1. What’s Happening on the Social Graph
What are the stories, post, articles that keep showing up in your twitter feed? When you check out the latest social media information, what do you keep seeing? What is popping up?
The most relevant and current information is going to flow through the social sphere. By taking time to be aware of what is going on, you can find topics and trends that will be highly valuable.
When you find these topics, evaluate if they are going to be valuable to your audience, steal that topic for you own blog.
2. Check the Comments
Blogs that target the same audience as you can be a great place to find potential content. The comments sections often have questions or discussions that can lead to a quality blog post.
Paying attention to what people are asking on highly trafficked blogs can really serve as a great resource for good beginning content.
3. Community Forums
Forums that are targeted to your core audience is a great place to steal ideas. They are filled with people asking questions. What better place to really find beginner or intermediate content topics?
I frequent the StudioPress forums and try to help when I can. I like doing it and it allows me to contribute back to the StudioPress community. Finding questions in the forum leads to good topics for my blog.
Often times I answer the question on my blog first. I then post an answer on the forums with a link to my blog post. It allows the user to get the answer they need, it helps me generate useful content, and it helps other forum users.
So Why Should You Steal Content?
Creating regular content for you website is critical. It is what keeps potential clients coming back to your site. It is the way you build traffic, an audience, and authority. If you want to build your business online, you must be writing regular, quality content.
Since you’ve read to the bottom of the post, here’s a little tip that you may find helpful. When you find potential content for your blog, save that content on your blog. I will go ahead and create a post entry with the title and save it as a draft.
What do you do for content ideas? Do you already use these ideas or do you have others? Share in the comments below so your ideas can be stolen by others. 🙂