You are always creating content.
Whether it’s a tweet, a Facebook post or a live video.
There is a never ending stream of content.
In fact, it’s estimated that 4.6 billion pieces of content are produced daily.
So how do you and I create the kind of content people actually WANT to consume so we don’t get lost in THAT sea of content ?
It’s as simple as that.
There are several tools – free and paid – that will give you the intel you need to keep creating amazing content. However, what is the point if you DON’t know how to use them ?
In today’s post, I am going to give you an overview of 10 free online listening tools you can start using immediately and how you can use them in practice to create content people want.
Google Keyword Planner
How to start using Google Keyword Planner
- If you haven’t already sign up for Google Keyword Planner.
- Since you access the Keyword Planner through Google Adwords, you might be asked to enter payment information. Enter it if you feel comfortable and know that Google will not charge you unless you actually run an ad in Adwords.
- Once you have all that set up, navigate to TOOLS and then KEYWORD PLANNER.
4. There are a few options once you get into the Keyword Planner. You can either search for keywords by putting in the actual keyword/key phrase and search for different variations of that keyword that come up. Or you could search using someone else’s website URL to see what kind of keywords lead back to their site.
5. The nice thing about the Keyword Planner is that you can go ahead and download the keyword ideas to an Excel sheet you can save and refer to as you plan your content.
Google Keyword Planner is not the best listening tool out there BUT I recommend it because, IT IS GOOGLE and their name is synonymous with search.Thus, it’s likely that incorporating these key words/key phrases into your content is a good SEO step in the right direction since people are already putting these or similar search phrases into Google search.
Another keyword research tool I enjoy using is Keywordtool.io.
With this tool, you can enter a search term and research what people are typing into search not just on Google but on Bing, Youtube and Amazon as well.
If you are using the free version, you will get a good list of keyword suggestions and questions.
Keywordtool.io is one of my favorite tools when I am creating headlines for my Youtube videos.
Facebook Insights is one of those tools you can easily over-look. However, if you plan on winning the social media game on Facebook I highly recommend that you spend some time here.
The feature I enjoy using in Facebook Insights it one called “Pages to Watch”. You can select pages of people you admire in your space who also have the kind of audience you would like to create. The idea here is not necessarily to monitor their growth but to see what kind of content they are creating to get engagement.
Based on that you can then start testing out those content types for your own Facebook audience.
Here’s one for my Twitter enthusiasts.
Navigate to ANALYTICS from your Twitter profile picture.
From there go into AUDIENCE.
What I love here is you can find out the interests of the audience you have built on Twitter and create and curate helpful Tweets around that.
Unless you live under a rock, you should know by now that in the last few years, Pinterest has been a great source of traffic for a lot of bloggers.
You can learn the basics of using Pinterest to drive traffic to your new blog here.
I’ve been using Pinterest actively since 2015 and so I do have a number of pins on there. A few things you can do with Pinterest Analytics are :
- See which of your pins get the most impressions, clicks, repins and likes.
- If you regularly pin other people’s content, you may even find that some of those pins also rank in the top.
- Take a note of the pins (yours and others’ you have pinned in the past) that have received the most attention and see how best you can repurpose/recreate that content with your own voice, ideas and insights.
You can “listen” on Youtube 2 ways.
- Using the Youtube auto-suggestion function. When you start searching for something, Youtube search will automatically populate the field with search suggestions. Take a note of those suggestions because they are content GOLD.
- Using Youtube analytics. Because I do have a number of videos on YouTube, I now have enough data to start using Youtube’s analytics to see what search terms people are searching to land on my videos.
- Click on ANALYTICS
- Navigate to TRAFFIC SOURCES
- Go to YOUTUBE SEARCH
- This should pull up a bunch of search terms your videos are ranking for. Now create more content around those search terms.
I love Buzzsumo however, if you are not using the paid version, it is limited in how helpful it is.
Nonetheless there is still useful information you can gather from the limited information you gather from there.
- Enter a search term or landing page/website URL in the search bar like so :
- Buzzsumo will pull up the best content created on the search term you put in or on the website you put in the search.
- Because this is content that is proven to work based on how many social shares it has (and thus most likely also doing well in the search engines), you have a great chance of also doing very well when you create similar content.
2.6 billion people visit Amazon each month and spend an average of 7 minutes on the site.
In other words, if everyone in the world used Amazon, about 3 of every 7 people would use Amazon each month. That’s a lot of people and it is also why you cannot overlook it as a content creator who is looking for ideas.
Amazon is it’s own search engine and if people are looking for items – and in our case as content creators, books – to buy on the platform , we can position ourselves to get a share of that delicious content/traffic cake.
- Search for your term of interest in the Kindle Store.
- Take a look at the top 10 search results in Kindle. Here are a few ways you can glean some content ideas from the top 10 Kindle books that come up in your search
- To see which books have been purchased the most, look at where the book ranks in the Kindle store. You will most likely hear people quote different rank cut-offs as a place to determine how well the books is selling on Amazon. You can then use the Kindlepreneur Best Seller Calculator to get a good idea of how many books this author is selling per day. In the example shown above, the author sells 19 books per day at a $10 price point. Not bad at all !
- The book titles themselves should give you some ideas on a good headline/what to create
- If the book as a “Look Inside” option, take a look at the chapter headings in the Table of contents. Those should spark some ideas already.
- If the book has reviews, read through those reviews and see some concerns that are brought up. Is there a gap in knowledge you can fill ?
Online Course Sites
Online communities abound.
Facebook groups. Twitter chats. Google+ Communities (yes, many of these are still very active). Pinterest group boards. Warrior Forum and other forums like it for different niches.
These are all great sources of content ideas if you are listening.
More than once a day, you will find people asking questions in these communities. If one person asks the question, you can bet that there are at least 1000 people around the world who have that question as well. If you create a post or video content around the question and optimize it well for search and social, you will definitely get a lot of eyeballs on it.
Have you joined my Solopreneur Brain Trust Community yet ? Why not ? Come on in !
What’s the Point ? How Do You Use This Valuable Info ?
One of the best ways I have seen how you can use the valuable information you gather from using one or all these methods is Brian Dean’s Skyscraper technique.
I have used the Skyscraper technique and let me tell you, IT WORKS. Use the tools I have listed here in combination with that technique and you are on your way to creating content people will flock to.
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