Writing articles is by far the most effective online promotion strategy I've come across. If you can write good, readable, original content, you can easily put yourself far ahead of the pack in your field of interest.
But article marketers and new article writers are often stumped for topics to write about. Finding topics that appeal to your readers can be time-consuming but well worth the effort.
Here are no less than eight awesome ways to research your market and find newsy topics that attract loads of traffic and the interest of your target audience.
1. Keyword Research Tools
To write an article that will get you a significant amount of traffic, you need to write about topics that people are searching for.
You also want to know which terms your target audience uses while searching, so you can use them in your article title and copy and increase the chance of being found by search engines.
Two excellent keyword research tools you should always use to research article topics are Wordtracker and Overture's Keyword Inventory Tool.
2. Newsletters and Trade Journals
Subscribe to email newsletters, ezines and offline publications related to your topic of interest. Reading what others in your field are writing about will give you lots of ideas for your own article topics.
It's easy to find newsletters that cover your topic online. If you want to write about internet marketing, for instance, you could search for ?internet marketing newsletter? and find the most well-read and respected publications in that field.
3. Google News Alerts
Google News Alerts is like a news aggregator that allows you to receive news based on your keyword of choice.
When you subscribe, you'll receive the latest stories that carry your keyword. Go through them and you may find some gems of information that you can write up into a topical article based on that story.
4. Press Release Alerts
Press releases are an excellent way to find out more about new discoveries or advances in your field. These can make an excellent topic for an opinion piece about that discovery or development.
Search press release sites for the latest releases in the field of your choice. You'll find a bunch of them listed here.
5. Online Forums
You can get some of your best article topics from other professionals in your field. Online forums provide an abundance of opinions, queries and ideas that might just make that flashbulb go off in your brain.
Visit forums, lurk and read other's posts or participate in discussions and benefit from the minds of some of the most interactive people in your field.
Blogs are a hotbed of discussion and opinion. They often carry some very interesting and topical pieces that can help you ideate.
Blog directories, a long list of which can be found at the link below, are a good place to start looking for blogs written on your topic of interest.
7. Seminars and Conferences
One of the best ways to keep up with new ideas and developments in your field is to attend seminars or conferences and network with other people.
You can often come away with a bunch of ideas, at these gatherings, and use them to write up articles.
8. Spy On The Competition
Check out your competitor's business and websites. They may be using ideas or even making mistakes that could give you ideas for articles on what does or doesn't work.
And finally, always remember to give credit (and a link back) to the news sources that you cite in your article.
Priya Shah is the CEO of an online marketing firm and writes an online marketing blog. Visit Article Writing Tips for more article marketing tips and tools.