Are Your Content Ideas Any Good? 5 Steps to Review Them

Coming up with an ongoing stream of new content ideas is hard. However, finding your content footing is even more challenging in the face of rapidly evolving consumer needs, always-crowded industry landscapes, and constant search engine algorithm updates.

64% of consumers think companies aren’t responding to their changing needs fast enough. Furthermore, Google’s helpful content update ensures those pages that meet such needs rise in the ranks faster than those that lag.

How do you know if your ideas will land with your target audience? Let’s look at what makes a good content topic and how to review yours to see if they fit the bill.

What Makes a Good Topic?

Not every idea your team comes up with is worth pursuing. Some ideas might have promise but need to marinate a bit to provide some more flavor. Others are sure to bomb with your target audience, no matter how genius they seem.

Even the most inspired and effective brainstorming sessions will result in both snoozers and winners. You need to know what makes a good topic before you can evaluate your team’s ideas.

It Focuses on People

Good topics are people-focused, not brand-centric. They cater to your audience’s pain, desires, needs, and interests rather than your bottom line.

Ideas that speak to an audience segment at a particular stage of the buyer’s journey are more likely to compel engagement. They answer a question, solve a problem, or provide relevant information. They can even be for entertainment, as long as they connect with audience interests.

A good idea demonstrates an understanding of what your audience needs right now. It aligns with the swift pace of change.

Good Topics Make Sense for Your Brand

Let’s get real: You need to move your audience down the funnel and show your C-suite that content marketing really is a good investment.

While you might turn people away in droves if your content is all hard sales, you still want to highlight how your products or services meet consumer needs. Every idea should somehow tie into your offerings, even if you don’t explicitly link your products or services to the topic.

Ideas should also help you meet content strategy or campaign goals and be suitable for one of your content channels and formats.

They Adhere to Google’s E-E-A-T Guidelines

Google is the head coach of the search engine champion team, and its content guidelines are the content world’s playbook. The company exists to provide internet users with the information they seek as quickly as possible.

The folks on the inside understand the search engine optimization game, quickly catching onto tactics designed to boost SEO rankings without providing anything of value to the consumer. Efforts to game the system frustrate search users, which isn’t good for Google.

While we all grumble at the company’s ever-changing algorithms, the truth is that by paying attention to what Google is looking for, you will also understand how consumers use the search engine. Part of the company’s helpful content update included new guidelines for gauging content quality.

In addition to focusing on your audience, your ideas need to demonstrate E-E-A-T, or:

  • Experience: You have real-world, significant experience with the subject matter.
  • Expertise: You have an educational or training background that supports your knowledge on the subject.
  • Authoritative: You have the credentials to speak on the topic.
  • Trust: Your brand is trustworthy.

Pursue ideas that your audience would expect you to have insight into, and make sure you can provide factual, helpful information to support the topics you choose.

How Can You Tell if Your Ideas Are Good?

To find out whether your ideas are worthy of spending the effort to turn them into a publishable piece, follow these five review steps:

1. Review Your Content Strategy

Your content ideas should align with your content strategy and strategic business goals. This exercise should be as simple as bouncing each idea off your predetermined, documented list of subjects, topics, categories, themes, or pillars that make up your strategy. You have that list documented, right?

DivvyHQ makes this especially easy as it comes equipped with native content strategy fields that allow customers to populate their strategic metadata, including: content topics and categories, target audiences, buyers stages, keywords, markets, regions/geos, languages, and MORE. You can quickly determine whether your ideas fit within a defined strategy category.

Then, from a visibility standpoint, users have endless filtering capabilities, allowing them to query and search both upcoming content initiatives or their existing content archive.

Divvy’s calendar lets you set up content strategy filters, making it easy to evaluate new ideas based on strategy categories.

DivvyHQ example: Calendar Filters

2. Check Your Audience Segments

While broad topics have some appeal when used sparingly, most of your ideas should be geared toward a specific audience segment at a particular buying stage. You won’t have to track down your audience segments if you use Divvy’s platform and include them in your calendar filters.

You should also filter your calendar to determine how many topics are already on deck for the segment and buyer’s stage in which your ideas fit. Similarly, you can use this option to decide if an idea is redundant.

3. Determine Relevance

Determining relevance has two parts. First, you need to assess whether the idea is relevant to your brand (and satisfies E-E-A-T guidelines). Second, you need to evaluate whether it will appeal to your audience.

The first step should be easy. The second may require research and diving into your buyer personas to compare the topic against audience pain points and interests.

4. Review Keyword Data

After you’ve made it this far, you’ll need to dial in on what keywords are appropriate for each topic. If you can’t connect your ideas with what your audience seeks when searching for information, you may want to trash or table the concept.

Once you’ve narrowed in on a few primary, related keywords, we’d advise using one of the tools listed below to get a feel for search volume and overall keyword popularity. Understanding how often certain keywords or phrases are searched will likely paint a very clear picture of how to prioritize (or deprioritize) any given idea.

Moz keyword explorer - review content ideas

Source: Moz Keyword Explorer

5. Review Your Analytics

The last step is to do some data analysis of your existing published content that relates to your new content ideas. Evaluating past content performance for similar ideas can help you predict how well your new ideas might do.

Our analytics tools allow you to aggregate data from multiple sources, so this step doesn’t have to be painful.

Let Us Help You Make This Process Simple

Everything we do is in the name of making our customers’ content marketing lives easier. Our ideation tools, in particular, simplify the idea intake, storage, and review process. You have a convenient space for inputting and storing ideas that might not make the cut this time around but could be worth pursuing later. Consumer needs and interests aren’t static. Don’t be afraid to “park” an idea, even if it’s made it through much of your review process.

And while we can’t tell you whether your ideas are worthy of pursuing, we can give you the tools to evaluate them quickly and then manage the content production process for the keepers. Request a demo today to see Divvy in action.

Book a DivvyHQ Demo