With good strategies, social listening creates a rich resource for discovering blog post ideas. But how do you find good topics within all that information? Here are nine quick guides to consider when developing your next post.
- How many of your readers does it affect?
- How deeply does it affect those readers?
- Who is disagreeing about an issue?
- What points are they making in their disagreements?
- What do your readers need to know about the conflict and its sides?
- How long ago did the event happen?
- Would the event still be of interest to readers in the gap between the event and blog publication?
- Did the event happen far away or close by?
- If the event happened far away, is there a local angle that might interest your readers?
5. The Unexpected
- Does the topic offer something different or interesting to it?
- Will that difference be of interest to your audience?
6. The Useful
- Will the topic help readers solve problems in their lives?
- Will the topic make readers more knowledgeable?
- Will the topic help your audience improve their lives in some way?
7. The Human
- Will your audience be interested in reading about a person’s experiences?
- Can you get an interview with this person?
- Do you see any long-term patterns developing?
- Do you have enough evidence to explain and support that pattern?
- Would your audience have an interest in, or use for, this trend?
- Based on what you have seen, do you have an idea of what might happen next?
- Do you have enough evidence to support the prediction you want to make?
- Would your audience have a stake in this prediction?
If you have some journalism training, you might recognize a few of these guides as news values. Blog content that draws on news values tends to have more weight and relevance than blogs that don’t use these values often. These values start with the audience in mind, as the best blogs and blog posts do.