In every PR, communications and content program, there’s likely a point where the team is stuck creatively. They feel they’ve run out of fresh ideas. These are the opportunities to think creatively in both approaching and creating content. For those that are currently in the position, there are a few different methods that we use to spark this creativity and make great content.

  1. Team Brainstorm. One of the simplest ways develop content is through a team brainstorm. First, break up the brainstorm into categories to help guide the conversation, such as earned, owned, and paid media opportunities. No idea is a bad idea, as any thought can help spark a new direction that can lead to bigger and better ideas. This collective think tank allows for new thoughts and for every team member share their voice about different avenues to go down. Also, bringing in outside voices from other teams can help give a fresh pair of eyes to the situation. Having an outside perspective can help the team think of new ideas previously unseen.
  1. Google Trends. Data and analytics are great tools to see what is currently trending with consumers. With tools like Google Trends and Sysomos, we can see what consumers are searching currently and what they’re saying about the brand and their competitors. This data allows us to create targeted content based off the findings from this resource. For example, the Olympics were a huge event that occurred over the past two weeks and was a popular target for consumers. If the brand is in the food industry, we could create content built around Korean-styled food, since there was an increased popularity in Korean culture. Having this data is a great tool to get inside the minds of consumers and create content that they will be interested in.
  1. Timely Occurrences and Seasonality. It’s important to take note of the media cycle and seasonality of certain events when creating content. There are certain times of the year where a certain theme, be it a holiday or event, will dominate the news. The holiday season is a great example of this, as it dominates the news cycle regardless of any industry the company works in. There are also periods of time where we will need to find those hidden seasonal events and take advantage of them as well. For example, March is National Nutrition Month according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. If the brand is in food or health, now is a great time to create content based around healthy eating, nutritional awareness, and health advice. The target audience will be aware of this month and will want to see content tailored toward it.
  1. Refresh Old Content. There’s nothing wrong with looking back at old content that has been used before and seeing how it can be applied again. Sometimes the campaign was a success and it’s worth giving it a refresh and sharing it with media and consumers again. Sometimes a campaign wasn’t so successful, so this is an opportunity to see why it wasn’t and make adjustments this time around.
  1. Ask the Media. Sometimes the best way to create new content is to simply ask the media what they are interested in. The reporters are who you are ultimately going to share the content with, so it’s good to get their perspective on what kind of content they want. Long lead reporters are great contacts to reach out to and see exactly what content they are working on for future issues. If a reporter shares they are writing about grilling and barbecue for their June issue, you can share this information with your team and build around that. Reaching out as a resource to what the reporter wants not only builds the relationship, but gives you true insight into what kind of content will get the brand coverage.

It’s our jobs to create content that is going to resonate with reporters and consumers. These five methods can all help create content individually, but it’s also important to use them together. A combination of data, analytics, brainstorms, and seasonality can result into an exciting amount of coverage and exposure the brands we work with.

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