Content Marketing Ideas: 14 Simple Ways To Get Awesome Ideas For Your Content Marketing

Content marketing is continuing to play an increasingly important part in marketing your business effectively.

There’s only one small problem. You need to have a steady and consistent supply of content for it to work… and how can you come up with enough content marketing ideas to keep that flow going?

What content can you continue to create that will attract the right traffic for your business, and bring new leads and customers through your door?

That’s where this article comes in, and it’s actually far simpler than you might believe.

Here are fourteen awesome ways to keep ideas flowing into your content marketing funnel, and allow you to build an increasing level of online visibility and traffic for your business in the months and years ahead.

1. Keyword research

Did you know sites like eHow.com have built much of their success on keyword research? Their content is largely created on what their research tells them people are looking for online. You can simply employ the same strategy.

2. Quora

Quora has a huge amount of potential for idea generation. It contains queries on a ton of different topics – simply find your niche, and look through the queries to discover what people are trying to find out about.

3. Customer Questions

Your own customer support is an invaluable source of ideas, because you hear straight from the horse’s mouth what information your customers and prospects are looking for.

4. Blog Comments

Similar to the above, comments on your blog enable you to listen directly to your marketplace, and you can then create content to respond to those needs.

5. Other Blogs In Your Niche

By reading other blogs within your niche, you can get some great ideas for your own posts, and gain further inspiration from the comments they receive. For example, you might be able to flesh out a topic they briefly touched on in their post, or approach it from a new angle.

6. Twitter

Search Twitter and discover what’s happening in your own niche. As well as comments you’ll see links to a lot of other content that could help inspire your own.

7. Hot Topics

What are the main topics of conversation in your industry right now, from your customer’s point of view? What are their primary concerns, right now?

8. How-To Tutorials

How-to type content remains very popular, and providing such content is a great way in which you can immediately gain authority and trust with someone. You’ll also find people get referred to your tutorial from others who have benefited from your advice.

9. Items in the News

What’s in the news right now that affects customers in your niche? Alternatively, how could you adapt and apply key news stories to your business? Tapping into the conversation already in your customer’s mind can be a powerful way to capture their attention and reach audiences who haven’t come across you before.

10. Previous Content

Content you have created before can easily form the basis of new content. For example, you can approach it from a different angle, or use a different media. A blog post written previously can form the basis of a video on YouTube. Topics briefly touched on before can be expanded into completely new content items.

11. List-From Content

This article is a list-form article – content formed on the basis of creating a list about something. What lists could you create of relevance for your own potential customers?

12. Stay Alert!

Train your brain to take advantage of new ideas as they arise. Opportunities for new content are all around you! Start carrying a notebook and pen around with you, or use your smartphone. Jot down new ideas whenever they arise… your brain will get used to it, and supply you with increasing numbers of ideas to pick from.

13. Interview Someone

Who is well known and familiar to your customers, and who has relevance to your business (or how can you make what they do relevant)? You’ll be surprised at how willing most people are to be interviewed. Just make a list of questions, and record the conversation… use Skype or a Google Hangout.

14. Interview Yourself!

Either ask someone to interview you, or interview yourself. This gives a great opportunity to display your expertise, gain credibility with your audience, and reach new audiences you wouldn’t otherwise reach. For example, someone interviewing you could make the interview available to their own list.

So there you have it… 14 simple ways to get an everlasting supply of awesome ideas for your content marketing.

Semiconductor Industry Sales Overview – 2013

According to a report from the Semiconductor Industry Association, worldwide semiconductor sales in 2013 totaled $305.6 billion, hitting an annual record. This was an increase of 4.8% from 2012 sales of $291.6 billion.

Brian Toohey, president and CEO of SIA, reports that this is the first time that the global semiconductor industry exceeded $300 billion in sales for the first time ever, spurred by robust sales growth across nearly all regions and all product segments. Toohey notes that the industry finished the year with the strongest December sales on record, an indication that this momentum is likely to carry over to this year.

Toohey also adds that the semiconductor is becoming ubiquitous and is present in many products, from the home, the car, and mobiles. This indicates a favorable position for the semiconductor industry.

The SIA report indicated that total chip sales for the fourth quarter of 2013 came to $79.9 billion, which was 7.7% higher than the $74.2 billion reported in the fourth quarter of the previous year. In December 2013 alone, chip sales totaled $26.6 billion, which was an increase of 17.3% from December 2012.

The American market showed the biggest growth in sales, exhibiting an increase of 13.1% in its annual semiconductor sales. Europe and the Asia Pacific region also showed increases of 5.2% and 7.0%, respectively. However, sales in Japan actually suffered and decreased by 15.2%, part of which is due to the devaluation of the Japanese yen.

Falan Yinug, SIA director of industry statistics and economic policy, says that Japan has been artificially devaluating the yen in order to stimulate exports, leading to lower sales in the Japanese market, but there could be better growth this year. On the other hand, Europe’s sales had been suffering in 2012 and in the first half of 2013, but the numbers showed that the market there is already recovering.

Among the industry segments, memory was the fastest growing with sales increasing 17.6% in 2013. DRAM performed well in the memory segment, with its sales increasing by 33.3%, while NAND flash also showed strong growth with an 8.1% increase. Optoelectronic products and analog also showed positive growth, with annual sales increases of 5.3% and 2.1%, respectively.

It’s still too early to say whether the record sales is significant in itself as semiconductor sales has fluctuated yearly since 2008. However, even as industry sales remain cyclical, the extreme numbers are slowing down and are being replaced by numbers indicating small but steady growth as the semiconductor industry matures.

A Deutsche Bank Market Research release expects that growth in the industry would accelerate to 8% in 2014, but this projection has already been discounted by many sectors within the industry itself, such as analog and PLDs.

In contrast, the World Semiconductor Trade Statistics (WSTS) organization forecast a more consistent market growth for this year as well as in 2015, projecting sales of up to $317 billion in 2014 and $328 billion by 2015.

What Colours Your 2014?

The rapidity of reproduction means that what we see on the fashion catwalks takes little time to filter into the home, generally starting with accessories and accent pieces before transitioning to larger-scale, higher investment items. But the use of colour is important to observe. While each colour body and/or manufacturer has at least one dominant neutral colour scheme within their 2014 trend palettes, colour definitely comes into play.

Martin Tustin-Fuchs, brand manager for Dulux paint, explains that with the 2014 palette, “we’ll see novel shades and unexpected combinations of colours in the year ahead in all areas of home decor – reds are more tangy, oranges are more expressive, greens are more jeweled, and blues are more tropical.”

Indeed, there has already been a shift to deeper, richer tones throughout fall 2013. Colours remain bright, bold and playful, which is a continuation – and furtherance – of current trends. Darker shades of gray are again (or still) being universally dubbed “the new black,” and gray undertones persist in influencing many of the most appealing shades, earthy hues and neutrals among them.

But 2014 also draws attention toward blues, purples and pinks. A few could be branded “pastels,” but more often than not, the tones are lively and bold. Consider some of the following descriptions from the Pantone View home and interiors 2014 trend palettes:

  • a melding of both vibrant and deep hues… intertwined in intriguingly inventive colour combinations
  • colours of power and energy counter-balanced by the… hues that express the necessity for introspection and calm
  • both svelte and voluptuous… attention to detail and the drama of high fashion… can be theatrical in nature
  • a sense of adventure, wit, experimentation and discovery… “tongue in cheek” in attitude and highly original in colour juxtapositioning and cleverly conceived in evocative combinations
  • a symphony of elevated and voluptuous color to… evoke an atmosphere full of vivid richness and blissful excess

Reds will deviate from the berry tones of recent years toward more energetic reds with orange undertones. Pair these emboldened hues with rich jewel tones, elegant darks, warm browns, spicy oranges or other bright hues.

Oranges move away from the more citrus-like tones of late to a more spicy, earthy palette. Though these new orange hues lack the pink undertones of prior seasons, they look fantastic with pastel pinks and grays, or can be tempered with more complementary dark blues and turquoise.

Yellows have returned in a big way with a resurgence in gold and brass tones. While just about anything will go, look for a greater dominance among softer, more delicate yellows, such as PPG’s 2014 colour of the year, Turning Oakleaf.

Greens made a strong comeback in 2013 with the strength of emerald and other jewel tones. With the prevalence of blues and grays, it should come as no surprise that greens will lean more toward the blue spectrum, embracing hybrids like teal. Watery palettes, combining multiples shades of greens and blues, will no doubt be a favorite. Based on early trend palettes for 2015, expect to see more green, both directly and as undertones for prominent blues and yellows as 2014 draws to a close.

Blues will favor the ocean, from tropical paradise to deepest sea. With all the agates and high-sheen finishes seen at High Point, expect blue to sparkle.

Violets are moving along two distinct pathways, as is evidenced by Pantone’s Radiant Orchid versus Sherwin-Williams’ Exclusive Plum. The red-purples are more daring and thought provoking, while the blue-purples are much softer, bringing with them a certain tranquility.

For those with a less vivid approach to colour, boldness and vibrancy are counter-balanced by sophistication and simple elegance. In cases such as this, colours are unassuming and are harmonized rather than fighting for centre stage.

There is more subtlety in the transition between tones within a particular scheme, presenting a more classic, timeless feel. Keep in mind that “timeless” does not necessarily equate to an abundance of typical neutral tones. There is plenty of room for experimentation; use it!

How To Assess Your Capabilities With A Through Life Capability Management Plan

Take a specialised approach to your Through Life Capability Management by evaluating your whole organisation as one system.

Through Life Capability Management (TLCM) is the process that allows you to assess and prioritise the capability of your equipment and systems for the whole of their life from acquisition to disposal. It is a high-level integrative management function, with particular application in the context of defence.

Capability management assists organisations to better understand, and effectively integrate the total enterprise ability or capacity to achieve strategic and current operational objectives. It also develops and provides solutions that focus on the management of the interlinking functions and activities in the enterprise’s strategic and current operational contexts. The TLCM approach enables every aspect of new and existing military capability to be planned and managed coherently across all Defence Lines of Development from cradle to grave. In the military context, TLCM doesn’t just evaluate capability of one single piece of equipment, the methodology looks at the interdependencies of all aspects of your system’s capabilities, including Interoperability, and evaluates your organisation and the Support System as one Total System. Capabilities may also be analysed in terms of Force Structure and the readiness of elements within that Force Structure.

In both the military and commercial contexts, operations and related critical activities are playing an increasingly important role in leading and driving business transformation, and contemporary capability management needs to have close regard of those factors.

Organisations are made up of a mix of capabilities that are used in various combinations to achieve outcomes. Within that portfolio, a capability will be transient unless managed and maintained over time. Therefore, a typical capability lifecycle spans needs, requirements, acquisition, in-service and disposal phases.

While highly developed management disciplines are in place in many military organisations, the concepts, principles and practices of capability management can be readily adapted and used effective for awide-range of applications in the strategic and operational management of many other enterprises.

The holistic perspectives in in Through Life Capability Management ensures the most cost effective, efficient and comprehensive solutions are made available so you can meet operational demands without going over budget or compromising Capability through poor planning. This approach will help you create and deliver an effective Support Plan.

If you decide that you need to evaluate your organisational system you need a methodology which facilitates the production of comprehensive and pragmatic costed Through Life Management Plans (TLMPs) in a structured, coherent manner for you.

The approach is flexible and scalable, makes maximum use of existing information and complements an adaptable Through Life Costing (TLC) methodology in order to generate authoritative TLC predictions which enables the production of cost profiles, the generation of budgetary estimates, and supports investment appraisal.

Copyright (c) 2014 Stratique Marketing, Design and PR

Psychic Insights and Prosperity Horoscopes for 2014

Psychic Impressions of 2014

Life is going to get wild, folks. The surf is UP, it’s action time- apathy is scarce and life seems more acute in this fast moving, fast-changing, transitional year. It’s time to ride the waves and accept all the interesting things that can happen. Many, many things can happen to a person in just one year. 2014 feels to be a surprise, possibly mind-blowing… very real and revealing and renewing. Many take the plunge and truly leave the past behind. People free themselves left and right. Good news for people wondering “if they will ever change”: we are much more willing to follow our intuition and spiritual guidance than in past years.

2014 has a rollicking, reckless rhythm that goes to extremes… it’s an exciting time to be a teenager! I’ll bet they have their fair share of adventures they don’t tell anybody about, and get less sleep than usual.

Showing Up Matters: A year of personal triumph and arriving somewhere new. Within themselves, people are ready and willing to act, to revolt, to revolutionize their self-image, wardrobe, country, religion, and take on daunting challenges. It’s a more pointed year of personal re-invention, transformation of work styles, and even the metamorphosis of society’s institutions. The biggest changes come this year, and the greatest exhilaration. Peoples’ sense of purpose is renewed.

Love, relationships, and partnerships are much more of a focus this year than last. People’s need for comfort and intimacy becomes more important.. They get together for a wider range of reasons, finding the answer in partnerships of various kinds. Collaborations can be very successful this year. People will look back and be glad about the love that has come into their life… it’s a good year to get involved and care about others, and be enriched. Emotional healing is in the air.

The U.S.: Reasons to be optimistic are: President Obama has a surprisingly great year so he must be getting more done. Perhaps he is effective in some new way about “income inequality”. It looks like the stock market does well in some commodities and new kinds of industry/technology. Echoing this year’s phenomenon in people, where they get a clear view of their low and high points, the worst and the best of their life, disenfranchised poor Americans might be going through the same thing-seeing how bad it can get, and then seeing new opportunities made. There may be many more solutions forthcoming… there is something about this year (maybe it takes both 2014 and 2015) that is like turning a corner.

The Speaking Stones: The Speaking Stones are a divination system I use with individual clients, in circles to create a group divination, and also for messages about the year or month. There are eight stones, and I used only six for 2014 because two stones “didn’t’ belong” in the design, and a stone excluding itself gives its own message:

The stones left out of the 2014 design suggest that it will not be a grounded, stable time, but another transitional year of major earth changes, fierce uprisings in society, continued abuse of Mother Nature, and crazy weather.

The 2014 design puts a spotlight on “unexpected developments” that have a big impact. It suggests we witness rapid change. Something could temporarily throw our money situation up in the air. A really big problem could surface. If a person’s world or some important aspect of their life is based on something false, it could be coming apart at the seams in 2014. Instability gets revealed. Although ultimately the stock market might do well, the drama and change in this design suggests there will be volatility and panic.

Astrological Triggers in 2014

All of January: Venus retrograde in Capricorn promotes us to make various upgrades, i.e. we introduce better-serving systems into our lives, more efficient procedures; we create better web presences, and nicer wardrobes. People in estranged relationships might reunite for emotional as well as practical reasons.

Jupiter in Cancer moves into Leo July 16th: When Jupiter is in Cancer, people tend to go on an inner journey concerned with personal growth and preparation, often for some new offering or venture. When it moves into Leo, they are more outgoing, presenting something to the world, and on stage in some new way. This astrological framework is helpful so you’re not concerned if you are inward-focused the first half of the year, it’s natural.

Grand Cross of Spring 2014: really intense!! The cavalcade of change-invoking circumstances in 2013 continues-only with greater intensity. Life highlights a choice: Are you choosing to shrink your world, or learn and expand? The Spring energy is unusually pressurized, so don’t worry if you’re not feeling on an even keel, few are! All that matters is you keep adjusting back to a centered place.

On an individual level, a Grand Cross of four squared planets in April intensifies and highlights the polarities within us. If we are able to use its energy because we want to help ourselves or someone else, we can have strong, strong energy to get something done that’s difficult. Being “on your own side” allows you to move forward with this energy.

This time will deepen our need for inner peace. It makes us search for what we stand for and value. We seek to exist on ever more truthful levels that keep life manageable. Innovations in our personal life will entail cleaning out and clearing out, especially the first half of the year.

Positive Response to Pressure: The Year of the Mighty Collaborators: Heroes come out when crises emerge! With courage and candor, collectives of Concerned Citizens for Planet Earth begin to operate full-throttle. We’ll hear of innovative solutions and how we can benefit from streamlined processes. According to a Mayan shaman I heard recently, there’s hope in that we have a new 25 year cycle to look forward to, in which we can make up for having blown it so far as planetary stewards, by trying much harder from now on. Or else.

Personal Guidance: It’s easy to get out of balance in excessive 2014. The best time to establish personal health routines is right now in the beginning of the year: make a ceremony out of personal stability with the twenty minutes of exercise you do in the morning, or make time for exercise classes if that’s what works; diet and health routines deliver the balm of well-being and you’ll want them in place by Spring.

We could see our personal bottom and our personal top, and you could reach both in the same year. This is no time to judge yourself: performance in different areas of life varies. Of all years, individuals benefit from increased self-understanding and self-acceptance. Remember Edison: something like 10,000 failures before he succeeded to make a light bulb. In the long run all that counts is showing up.

Individual messages for the Astrological signs: OK, here comes the awful part: I have lost all the messages, maybe. The digital recorder I used just flashes “error” and nothing online helps me figure this out. Although this manufacturer still has real-people customer service, and maybe the file can be recovered. Meanwhile, I have a set of 2014 prosperity and “how to succeed” messages already posted on my blog and the Examiner; they will have to fill in until February’s newsletter, when I’ll write individual messages for the astrological signs.

For all signs: Success and projects in 2014 take effort and grit.

Banish hate! If it isn’t in your repertoire of emotional responses to yourself or anyone else, you will avoid connecting with a lot of weird energy batting around the planet this year; don’t align with the weird side of 2014 because it’s a mile wide.

How to Succeed in 2014 for the Fire, Water, Air and Earth Signs

Aries, Leo, Sagittarius, Fire signs: This year is about getting your fire re-ignited. Now you feel free to do what brings you prosperity. It’s going to be hard if you must know what’s going to be successful; never mind how things look now. Do what you find most compelling, it leads to success.

Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces, Water signs: The route to prosperity begins with having to clear things out of their lives, then knowing what it is they’re willing to put energy into, and being willing to start at the beginning of something. Recognize you have the tools, the strength, and the inner resources to begin in this freer place

Gemini, Libra, Aquarius, Air signs: You have better connections and backing or support this year, yet you’re keenly aware it’s still up to you and your work, and how you follow through, to make a success out of your better prospects. But you have a very good running start with plans that have already started before the year begins.

Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn, Earth signs: This is a year where you may not see revenue from your new ideas, but you can get invaluable feedback. Don’t overextend yourself investing in what’s new: you’re more in the dreaming-up and experience-gathering phase.