We've all been there.
It's 11 pm, you're trying to write an article, but you're fresh out of ideas. And no matter how hard you try and brainstorm a new piece, your brain just can't think of fresh ideas that your blog and social media readers want to check out.
Here at Social Report, we call this "idea burnout".
But it's nothing to be ashamed of—after all when you write and brainstorm article ideas for a living, chances are you're going to experience it at some (many) points in your career.
Fortunately for us, we live in the internet age, which brings with it an increasingly endless source of inspiration for awesome blog ideas—if you know where to look.
At Social Report, our favorite places to find content ideas are within online communities like Quora and Reddit. And in this article, we'll show you what online communities are best for finding content ideas, and we'll even throw in a few tips for using each community for content ideas.
Sound good with you? Great—let's jump in!
Browse relevant subreddits
Reddit's gotten absolutely massive over the years.
Seriously, nowadays there's a subreddit for just about anything you can think of—and you should take advantage of this when looking for content ideas.
Just subscribe to a few subreddits in your industry and read them frequently. When reading, keep your eyes peeled for repeat questions, new questions, and topics that aren't widely discussed elsewhere on the internet.
Why do this?
Simple: people post breaking new content to Reddit. Better yet, they are generally posting here because they can't find them elsewhere, so capitalize on that and write your own content that answers their burning questions.
Look for popular questions on Quora
Quora is a social network based on questions, so naturally, it's a great place to find hot topics and questions you can answer on your blog.
Search through Quora frequently for questions related to your industry, prioritizing questions that are asked frequently but receive little response.
These are the questions that people are Googling, pushing you to the top of the search results if you can give a solid answer.
One of the best parts of Quora is that you can search by keyword or by category. So check your industry's category frequently for new and interesting questions.
When you're done with your piece, don't be shy about answering the questions you took inspiration from. Make sure to link back to your blog post in your answer too—this growth hack will drive traffic to your blog and make you look more reputable (and who doesn't love that?!)
Want to see some more awesome growth hacks you can use in 2019? Check out our list.
Keep an eye on industry web forums
Looking for more advanced, less common insights? Check out a message board (or, web forum) related to your topic.
With the rise of Reddit and social media groups, these are becoming less and less relevant. However, they often have more in-depth and advanced information on industry topics that you can't find on Reddit or other forums.
We recommend browsing a few categories of these message boards to find interesting and helpful information. Dive into a few different posts, and find the questions that people are asking and answers they're receiving.
Do note, however, that the questions you find on a message board may be a bit more obscure than what you'd find on Quora. So when you write an article, you may not have a huge readership via search.
Follow relevant Twitter lists
Want easy access to article ideas? Find Twitter lists related to your industry.
Twitter Lists are—in short—a way for you to group together with other users and see all of their tweets in a feed-style format.
For example, if you had Social Report, Social Media Examiner, and Social Media Today in the same List, you would see all of their Tweets in this feed.
Make your own Twitter lists of industry blogs and thought leaders, or subscribe to existing lists. Then, check these frequently to find blog topic ideas and social media topics that are worth retweeting.
Trust us, it's a heck of a lot easier than trying to scout out these blogs in your feed.
Facebook and LinkedIn groups can be a goldmine
Facebook and LinkedIn groups are all the rage in 2019.
On the Facebook side, they offer brands and organizations an easier way to the top of Newsfeeds and create a community around their products. After all, group members can discuss whatever the admin team allows them to.
So with that in mind, join a few Facebook and LinkedIn groups in your industry and read them daily.
Like Quora, look for frequent questions and other interesting topics that may be article-worthy, and make note of them for future articles.
Even better? You can post your articles to these groups when people ask a related question. This will give you extra clicks and more brand awareness—two things every social media manager and content marketer wants to see.
There you have it: how to use online communities to find ideas for your social media and blog posts. In the comments, we'd love to hear what communities you use for finding content ideas—who knows, we might feature it in a future article!
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