If you find yourself running out of content ideas, don’t beat yourself up too much. It happens to pretty much everyone in the business. Being consistent both in terms of quality and frequency of posting is a challenge because it often leads to burnout.
Even if you have plenty of content ideas written down somewhere, you might still be unable to use most of them because topics have to be timely and relevant for your target audience.
So, what do you do once you hit the proverbial wall?
Well, you can turn to these three places, all of which are real goldmines of useful content ideas: Reddit, Quora, and YouTube.
Each of those platforms is different: Reddit is a forum and a news aggregation website, Quora is a question-and-answer network, and YouTube is the largest video platform.
They’re all not only useful for content ideas, but also abundant with resources that you can reference in your research. Furthermore, you can take part in these communities to drive traffic to your blog, website, or social media.
So, let’s take a look at how you can use these websites to power your content needs and avoid burnout.
A. Strategy for Using Reddit to Dig Up Content Ideas
There is strength in numbers, and Reddit makes a compelling case for that statement.
According to data from Alexa, the platform has more than 542 million visitors per month. In addition to that, its moniker, “the front page of the Internet” is well-earned. Reddit is consistently among the ten most visited websites online.
But it would be unfair to reduce Reddit to a “quantity breeds quality” cliché. Its content is pretty lean, with nearly zero filler to be found. This is partly due to its organization into subreddits, and partly because its admins run a tight ship.
Using Reddit for content idea needs is pretty straightforward:
- Find the most relevant subreddit which matches the niche you want to write in.
- Use the search function to identify the most useful thread.
We suggest sorting the threads according to the number of comments, which will indicate how active they are.
If you would like to be even more specific, you can search each of the subreddits too. For instance, you can visit the subreddit for digital marketing, and then type in the phrase “how to,” as shown below:
Source: screenshot from reddit.com.
To identify the most common questions or issues that your target audience might need help with, search any subreddit using one of the following phrases and their variations:
- How do you…
- What is the best…
- Advice on…
- Does anyone know if/how/why/when…
- Ideas on…
- Need help…
- The biggest challenge with...
In the example above, after sorting the threads by comments, you’ll be able to see the most common questions, issues, and pain points digital marketers are struggling with. This includes topics such as whether they should go it alone or not, where to start if you they total beginners, as well as tips on best marketing strategies if they have a tight budget.
You’ll also notice that some of the thread titles can be used as long-form keywords for your keyword research.
B. Strategy for Mining Quora for Content Ideas
Quora has over 300 million active users per month. That’s not exactly a surprise, because this is one of the best places to find in-depth answers written by influencers and experts in their respective fields.
While Reddit is divided into subreddits, Quora is organized into topics. Since you’ll most likely be using the search feature, make sure to notice how it works. What do we mean by that?
Well, if you were to type in “content writing,” you’d be able to search for that particular phrase, which can appear anywhere on Quora. But you can also use this phrase to research the “Content writing” topic, which is what we have done below:
Source: screenshot from quora.com.
As you can see, the most popular question is how to start as a freelance content writer, as well as which freelancer platform is the most lucrative.
Again, as in the case of Reddit, you can use parts of these titles for keyword research. But if you take the time to go through the actual answers, you’ll find that a lot of the topics are pretty detailed. This means that you can refer to them in your articles and social media posts, or even repurpose them to create an infographic. Just make sure to credit the original author.
After you’ve created your content, you can get back to Quora to take part in the discussion and link to your piece. What we also love about Quora is the fact that you can expand your knowledge on a particular topic, concept, or niche, due to the quality of its answers.
Plus, you can identify and follow the most popular influencers in your niche, as well as feeds for topics you find interesting. That way, you’re not only staying on top of what’s fresh or popular, but you’ll also have plenty of ideas in store for future posts.
C. Strategy for Finding Content Ideas on YouTube
YouTube may not occur to you as the first option for content ideas, especially if you’re not producing video content. But keep in mind that it’s the second largest search engine in the world, right after Google. It’s also among the three most popular websites in the world, along with Google and Facebook.
When you look at it that way, YouTube seems like an endless stream of content ideas. And the cool part is that you already know how to forage it because it works just like Google search.
Another similarity to Google becomes apparent when you click on any of the results. For example, we will use the keyword “content marketing” to look for inspiration, as shown in the image below:
Source: screenshot from youtube.com.
In addition to showing the results which contain your keyword, YouTube’s algorithm will also suggest other videos on topics that are related to yours, which is something that Google does with its related searches. This is how you’ll get ideas for exploring other topics your target audience might be interested in.
If you have your own YouTube channel and a sizable number of subscribers, you can also scroll through the comments for viewer feedback and requests for you to cover a particular topic. This may be a long shot though, since there can be thousands of comments for each video, most of them useless. But you can narrow down your search by looking up those comments which have the largest number of likes.
Using these three websites, you’ll be able to find content inspiration, expand your knowledge, and identify which topics your target audience wants you to explore. This means you should become a regular on Reddit, Quora, and YouTube, even if you’re not running on low ideas.