Have you ever been stuck on coming up with writing ideas for your blog, niche site, or a client? Twitter can be a very valuable tool when it comes to generating writing ideas, if you know how to use it. Here are some ways to come up with content topics using Twitter.
Follow People in Your Niche
Twellow Directory Search Results
One of the best ways to find out what is important now on a particular subject matter is to follow the top people in your niche. The authorities on any given topic (most likely the users with a high amount of followers) are going to be writing or at least sharing the latest articles and news on your topic.
Keep in mind, I am not suggesting you rip off anyone else’s articles or ideas. But if you read an article and feel like you have a different perspective or insight into alternative ideas that the original author might have left out, you could reference the original article in yours and then share how it inspired you to share additional information.
For example, an article about ways to do something could inspire you to write more ways to do it, or an article about reasons someone likes something could inspire reasons you dislike it. If you feel an original article about ways to do something is too technical for most users, you can write an article to simplify the process walk beginning users through the steps. Be creative in ways you can make your article even more valuable than others.
So how do you find the experts in a niche on Twitter? Check out Twitter directories such as Twellow and WeFollow. Simply search for a particular tag, and you get a list of users with their profile bio, sorted by their number of followers. You can take the top five, ten, or however many users you choose, follow them and / or add them to a Twitter list, and monitor their activity.
Check Out Current Trends
Trending Topics on What the Trend
Keeping an eye on current trends on Twitter can help you not only find out when your niche is the talk of the town and what people are talking about, but if you write your article based on whatever the trend is quickly enough, you can give it exposure beyond your followers by adding the trending #hashtag.
To find out what is currently trending, you can look at your right hand column in Twitter underneath your searches and lists and see the Worldwide trends or select trends for a particular city / country. You can also check out sites like What the Trend, Trendistic, and Hashtags to see more than just the current top 10 trending topics, recent trending topics, and more information about them.
Saved Searches in HootSuite
Monitoring conversations daily on a topic is likely to generate great ideas. It will help you keep an eye out for any trends, as well as see if lots of people are particularly interested in something or have specific questions. Depending on how quickly you research and write, you may be able to get in and answer people’s questions with your article. Assuming it is a direct answer to questions, you can even @reply the users who asked the questions.
Use the Advanced Search
Twitter Advanced Search Results
If searching a particular topic is not specific enough, you can always do an advanced Twitter search. The advanced search allows you to add in particular parameters such as choosing a particular keyword without other words, searching within conversations for Twitter users in a particular region, checking if the conversation includes a question, specifying a date range, and more.
Advanced search results can be saved as an RSS feed in your feed aggregator, or you can bookmark the search results page. I’m not sure if they can be added to HootSuite or TweetDeck – at the time of testing, the Twitter API was running super slow and never processed the results in either platform.
Twitter Topic Generation
Have you used Twitter to come up with writing ideas? Are there more ways you can think of to utilize Twitter for topic brainstorming?