We all get to that point where we are stuck for ideas. When I first started publishing information products online, I thought that certain people had a crystal ball they gazed into to find their next great idea. Or some top-secret contact who was providing them with inside information.
Over time, I realized that it wasn’t magic that allowed these people to come up with red-hot ideas on demand. It was simply that they knew where to look.
I soon discovered many places where ideas seemed to always be found. I call these places “idea hangouts”. Here are three of my favorites where you can find ideas for your next article, blog post, or book anytime you want. Almost like a genie granting you three wishes…
Google is the ultimate “idea hangout”. There are so many ways to mine the gold in Google’s amazing search database that it would take another article to graze the surface of this enormous iceberg.
However, here are three quick ways to find ideas by searching Google.
- Watch While You Search
Google provides a “suggestion tool” that is ideal for finding the right keywords and the phrases commonly used. Just start typing your search phrase into the box and you’ll start seeing the most popular ideas right there!
You can take these very listings and create an article that answers the question, using the search phrase as the title. You can also incorporate these into a book as chapter titles or keywords in the book listing.
- Identify Listings.
Search for a broad topic related to your area of interest or expertise. (I.E. “Tennis”, “Weight loss”, “Homeschooling”.) Look at all of the web sites listed in the index of returned results. You’ll likely find some ideas for information products right there in the first couple of pages.
- Identify Advertisers.
You’ll probably notice small ads either at the top of the page or to the right of the page (or both!). These advertisers represent your competition. They also represent your thermometer for taking the temperature of your market and gauging interest in specific topics. Chances are, what they’re selling you should be selling.
In both of these examples, you can click through to the web pages of the sites listed and study their respective sales pages. Look specifically at the “bullet points”. Each of these represents a potential idea for your next content piece.
These are also ripe for affiliate marketing. If it’s something that appeals to you, it will appeal to your audience as well. So keep a running list of these sites as potential products to recommend.
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From the world’s largest search engine we move to the world’s largest bookstore. At Amazon.com you’ll really get your creative juices fired up.
Again, you’ll want to search the listings by entering a keyword or keyphrase into the search box on the main page at Amazon.com.
You’ll get a returned listing of numerous books, courses and other periodicals. Search these listed items for ideas for your own ebook.
— Example —
If you were to search for “Homeschooling”, you’d find a variety of ideas just waiting in the listing of books available, including: homeschooling for special needs children, getting starting in homeschooling, choosing curriculum, homeschooling field trips, homeschooling support groups, homeschooling for various ages (I.E. Pre-K, Elementary, Junior High, High School, etc.), homeschooling for Christians, etc.
Any of these listings (and the dozens of others listed) would be great ideas for the topic of your next book or product.
Pay particular attention to the first page of the listing. Amazon ranks their listings based on popularity of actual sales volume. In other words, #1 is a better seller than #50. This is a ready-made indicator of demand!
After visiting the world’s largest search engine and the world’s largest bookstore, it’s time to take a quick stop at the world’s largest periodical store, Magazines.com.
You’ll find every imaginable magazine listed at this site. The interesting part (and useful to you as a research tool) is this: you’ll also find the COVER of a recent copy of each magazine.
For example, you can search for “Parenting” and the engine will return a listing of magazines related to that topic. You can then click on the image of the magazine cover and you’ll be shown a larger copy of that cover where you can read the contents. (I.E. “How To Raise A Stubborn Child”, “27 Ways Discipline In Public” and “The Real Key To Your Child Getting Better Grades”.)
Each of these “cover stories” represents an idea for your next article or book.
The best part about it is this: the publishers of these magazines have done the research for you! They’ve measured the level of interest for these ideas and found it high enough to warrant not only writing content about them, but referencing that content on the cover of the magazine!
That’s your hint. People want this information.
So, there you have it, 3 “idea hangouts” where you can find ready-made, in-demand, red-hot topics for your next content creation. Regardless of what you are trying to create you’ll find good ideas on three websites.