Asking Is Almost Always Better Than Guessing
Generating topics for videos is something you will need to do if you’re going to produce regular videos for your audience. The best way to accomplish this is to ask your audience for ideas about the types of videos and what subjects they want you to cover. There are different ways you can ask or find out what your audience wants to see.
* Warm Them Up – Most audiences are used to the one-way communication that most people provide to them. They get emails, they sit and watch a presentation, and they read blog posts. But they aren’t used to real engagement. You need to start small, warming them up by always ending every blog post, every social media post and so forth with a short question.
* Encourage Interaction – Reward people who engage with you by thanking them, and by acting excited about their contribution. Consider giving them a prize or a percent off coupon for coming up with such a great idea or question.
* Send an Email – Use your email list to your advantage. When you are trying to come up with ideas, shoot them an email to ask for their input. Make it fun for them to respond by inviting them to a free Facebook brainstorming group, or offering points toward products and services for good ideas.
* Visit Discussion Groups – Remember that your audience lives in other places besides only on your lists, your groups, and your discussion boards. Go to other places where they like to hang out and read the discussions. Any question they ask can become fodder for a new video.
* Conduct a Survey – A really good way to ask questions of your audience is to send a survey. With a short survey you can also get a little extra information about the group, plus input into what types of videos they’d like to see. Make it worth their while by promising and delivering a surprise at the end of the survey. I use SurveyMonkey or Google Forms.
* Ask on Social Media – Go straight to your social media accounts to ask questions of your audience. You can also send a poll via social media, or you can post an infographic with information and a question such as: “What is the next video you’d like me to make?” If you can give them a couple of choices to choose from, you’ll be more likely to get more answers.
* Have a Contest – Let the audience pick the topic by giving five topics you want to talk about, then let them vote on which one they’d like to see most. The winning topic gets made, and the ones who voted on the winning topic get invite to submit more questions and maybe ask a question live at the event.
* Frame the Question Right – You want to lead the choices in a certain direction so that you know you can make a video about the topic. For example, maybe you are confused about two different options; post only those two options. Or maybe you know the topic, but you want to know what they need to know about the topic; approach it that way instead.
Asking your audience directly is one of the best ways to choose a topic for your next video. Don’t be afraid to ask them. It doesn’t mean you don’t know what to do—it means that you care about what your audience needs. They’ll appreciate being included.
If you have an idea for a video you’d like to see, post it in the comments below. Or you can email me firstname.lastname@example.org.