PR Start by Nick Lucido

How to start in the public relations industry.

Tips on Generating Content

If there was one thing that held me back from starting a blog sooner, it was my fear of not being able to generate content. I quickly learned some things that help me come up with a post every couple days. Hopefully the information is useful, and remember that I’m still learning, too!

Here’s some things that I do to generate content for this blog:

Read new things.

You should already be reading up on your daily news from The New York Times, CNN and The Wall Street Journal. With so many things going on in the news, it’s hard not to draw blog posts from how it’s affecting you, your career or your industry. If you’re into PR and advertising, it wouldn’t hurt to subscribe to PRWeek and Advertising Age. I got each subscription for $50 – look for deals and promotions!

Besides your typical news outlets, it’s also important to check up on what your friends are tweeting and blogging about.  If you take it one step further and see what your friends’ friends are tweeting and blogging about, you will be introduced to a whole new realm of conversations. Join them and write about it.

Also, keep an eye on what’s going on with things that might relate to you. As a PR student, I try to balance my PR news and blogs with social media and career sites. Here are some new great finds:

  • Mashable is a blog with reviews and how-to’s of the latest Web tools.
  • The Creative Career is a blog by an MSU alum in Chicago with tips and tricks for those pursuing a creative career. The podcasts are pretty cool, too!
  • Having an unmotivated day? Check out Pick the Brain, a blog to motivate and inspire. It really is a great pick-me-up on those not so great days.

Meet new people.

Get off your computer. Get out of your apartment. Go meet new people.

If you’re not a social butterfly, it’s hard to walk into a room of complete strangers and start talking to people. When meeting someone new, find their twinkle spot. Get your mind of the gutter. The twinkle spot is that one conversation subject that really gets someone going. It could be about gardening, bicycling, swimming or even the new Nintendo Wii game. Once you find out what interests that person, you’re golden.

If and when you get over this hump, meeting new people will let you see new perspectives on things. Incorporate those perspectives on your existing paradigms of your career, industry, etc. Not only will this help you improve, but it will also help your readers, too.

Join new organizations.

See a common trend yet? Besides joining the professional association of your chosen profession, don’t be afraid to join young professional groups, interest groups or even just-for-fun groups. These meetings and events often strike up some cool ideas.

It’s important to not limit yourself by having a narrow perspective on what you want your blog to be. Don’t have an agenda — keep your options open.

Listen to new information.

Listen first, talk second. A social media rule of thumb is to not ramble and self-promote. Remember, you’re here to learn and channel what you learn to create your own content. At Shannon Paul’s CMPRSA presentation (I was there in spirit!), she talked about 4 steps to joining the conversation:

Consume – Respond – Reference – Promote

Listening builds your credibility. Credibility builds your network. A larger network means a larger flow of information. When you consume all this information, you learn and are able to share your expert opinion.

In general, do new things. I am a big believer in jumping in the deep end of the pool. Immersing yourself in the conversation is the best way to learn. Hey, you might even have some fun along the way.

How do you generate content? Where do you get your inspiration? I would like to add to this list, so comments and suggestions are appreciated.

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3 Responses

  1. Sassy says:

    Thanks for this article…some great ideas. Some other popular ideas are product reviews, training programs for any type of athletic event, a daily theme (http://blog.runnerslounge.com/ has a different theme for every Thurs and often times loungers will write a post related to that theme), a crazy story of something you overheard, etc.

  2. Great tips, Nick. Just yesterday people were asking about how to think of subjects to post on. I’ll be passing this on!

    Another tip, which I recently read from Penelope Trunk’s blog, is to “write on the edge.” If you write about what everyone else is writing about, no one will want to read your blog. But if you write with a unique perspective, people will be more interested. She also suggested “reading on the edge.” Read blogs that aren’t exactly about PR (like Pick the Brain), and then relate them back to your profession.

  3. jennie says:

    thank god for the twinkle spot shout out… i loved it. I think far too few people try to find others twinkle spots and are only concerned about themselves and their own opinions in conversations and networking… nice post

    -momma bear

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