Plan 3 Month’s Of Community Activities In 10 Minutes

(Richard Millington) #1

Originally published at:
Too many people are guessing what discussion, item of content, or activity to work on next. You don’t need to guess in 2016. Let Google guide you. Google knows more than you about your audience. You can do 10 minutes of research and put together a big list of discussions to initiate, content to create, and activities to host. Step 1: Enter the Basic Topic Search Terms Into Google Let’s imagine you want to build a community about surfing. That’s quite a broad topic with a lot of competitors. So you might slice a niche for yourself…perhaps surfboards…and decide to…

(SLTy Admin) #2

Ummm… your article makes recommendations about using Google search based on what you saw in a search:

You noted that:

  • The top answer is either a place to buy, or a definition
  • The second entry has images
  • Then there are more places to buy
  • Then some news items

A hint: try searching for ANY popular topic. Depending on the category (in this case, looks like sports equipment, so we could try “running shoes” or “bicycles” or “skateboards”) and the amount and quality of sponsored advertising, it will give a certain sequence of responses. A set sequence. Not dependent on queries.

  • First, the “top” sponsored (“Ad words”) results. Those who pay more, and create a top-of-page ad, get listed at the top.
  • Then some canned answers, plus other sponsored results. Depending on the topic, this may include a definition and/or images and/or news items.
  • THEN we get to the actual search results.

It pays to understand that the first pile of “search results” in Google are often not based on audience preferences at all. In fact, the first search in the article produced ONLY sponsored results. Nothing from a normal website. The second search had much less sponsored content, so we did get to see some of the top actual search results.

Bottom line: the methodology described in this post will produce essentially the same “3 month activity plan” for any subject at all. :smiley:

(Richard Millington) #3

Hey @SLTy_Admin,

You’re right about the google ads. But I worked on the assumption that people in our audience are smart enough to spot ads and not include it here. I could have been clearer though.

I’m not sure you’re right about the set sequence though. The order is different for each one and some things show up whereas others don’t. For example, images, videos, latest news, definition, descriptions, maps, show up in some topics but not others.

I don’t follow the leap from going from this to the same 3 month activity plan for all though. I’m not with you there.

(Suzi Nelson) #4

Came here to tell @richard_millington that from a copywriting viewpoint, the title of this post is kickass. Great job.

Also great post in general! Wanted to add to this that we (read = the company I work for) goes through similar process when we are looking for new blog content. We certainly go through this process with Google, but we also use a site called BuzzSumo. You can enter in any topic and it will pull the most viral content around that topic - its a great way to see what people are passionate about! It’s a paid tool, but it does have a free version - might be another cool resource to add to your list :slight_smile:

(Richard Millington) #5

I haven’t tried BuzzSumo in the past. Might give it a go though.

The only downside of this process is it doesn’t allow for the ‘breakthrough’ idea that no-one anticipated. It’s a reliable process to generate activity you can predict will be popular…but doesn’t easily let you knock something out of the park.

(Suzi Nelson) #6

If you have something of value to give, those moments of inspiration, of “knocking it out of the park” are going to come. But it will be MUCH more powerful if traffic and eyeballs are already on your content when that happens.

Using tools like Google and Buzzsumo will feel weird if you approach content from a pure artist perspective (that every piece of content produced should be a brand new idea… that’s tough). This process will, if done correctly, get traffic to your content so they are already on board when that moment of inspirations hits :slight_smile:

(Richard Millington) #7

That makes sense, think I agree with it.

Which would you say is the best piece of content you’ve produced using BuzzSumo as a guide? I’d love to take a look.

(Suzi Nelson) #8

Definitely this:

We found a viral piece of content from the folks over at Buffer, linked to it, then had members of our team and industry experts give their take on it. It was super quick and easy to put together, gave us authority on the topic, and we knew that it would work because people already loved the original content.

(Joel Rangelle) #9

This is such a neat and clever tactic. I checked out Google Trends and BuzzSumo and it’s given me a dozen trending topics that I should capitalize on.