As marketers, writers and designers, every time we set out to generate material for our brands, we arrive back at the same question: how do we create content that matters? In today's crowded digital world, there's as many good resources as bad, and the fear of creating content for the scrap heap often consumes us.
But be not afraid content mavens, wordsmiths and design wizards, there are ways to ensure you create content that matters. A while back, I was struggling to pull a topic out of the hat as my publish date hurtled toward me. So I did what any logical person does when they're stuck - I Google'd and social media'd until I found useful information (I also got sucked into a food board on Pinterest for a while, but hey, it was lunch time and I was hungry).
On this particular quest for knowledge, I stumbled upon a glorious revelation called Inbound Writer. A content creation tool, Inbound Writer projects the performance of a number of topics, thus helping you choose an optimal subject. Because let's be serious, it's not effective to write about every idea you have (there would be less content if more people followed this rule).
Here's a summary of how I used Inbound Writer to help me decide what to write about in a blog post back in March. I'll also take a look at how the post has performed and come to a conclusion on how effective Inbound Writer (and other tools like it) can be in helping you create meaningful content for your business.
Anybody can try Inbound Writer for free (you just need to enter an email address), and I encourage you to give it a shot. The first step of the process is to enter your site as certain topics will perform better on one site than another; this makes sense but I'll admit it's something I've overlooked before. It'd be interesting to know what metrics Inbound Writer takes into account when projecting audience size and the potential reach of a given topic. Whether it's domain authority, social activity or reading level of a site's content, it's not a stretch to say, for example, that a granular technical post that succeeds on Moz's blog wouldn't do as well on the WSI blog.
When I set out to write the my mid-winter post, I had three basic Philippines Photo Editor ideas: content marketing tools, 1:1 marketing (which was our topic of the month for March) and streamlined social media. The directions here are simple enough, but make sure you enter your topic and not your proposed title for the topic.
After you run the tool, you'll get a general score page that, if you're lucky like I was, will show you an obvious choice. For those who don't follow our blog (shame on you!), yes, I did write about 1:1 marketing. I was (and still am) all-in on this tool, though, so given these results, did I have any other choice? The only instructions are to avoid red topics, but if you get both a yellow and a green, are you ever going to choose green?
Here's where the tool's output becomes impressive. Once I opt to drill down into 1:1 marketing as a topic, there are projected metrics that indicate how much traffic this piece of content will drive, its projected audience size and your site's ability to compete with similar content. Of great interest (especially if you want to measure the effectiveness of Inbound Writer) is the topic score. In the above case the topic score showed me if a flagship piece of our content drives 3,000 visitors per month, that's the number a score of 100 is projecting.