Five Questions That Help You Brainstorm Great Article Angles

It’s a simple question: What feature article topic will result in as many media placements as possible? Unfortunately, coming up with the answer is often quite complex.

An intriguing angle that appeals to a broad audience is what our extensive network of editors is looking for. If you’re feeling stuck, ask yourself these five questions that will help you discover an awesome angle for your next article.

1. What does your target audience want to know?

Put yourself in the mindset of your target audience. How do they live? What do they value? How are they unique from other groups? If your target audience is, for example, baby boomers, think about the endless ways you can appeal to this savvy group. Consider topics such as health, aging in place, financing retirement, travel, real estate – the list goes on and on. By understanding what piques the interest of your target audience, you’ll better understand what story angles to pursue.

2. What is currently happening in the news?

Trends pieces have potential to do very well especially if they tie to topics that a large audience wants to know more about. What’s currently making headlines? What’s trending on Twitter and Facebook?  Visit Google News and type in some key words that relate to your industry. Explore what’s getting noticed now and brainstorm how you can take advantage of the momentum.

3. What makes your product truly different?

Make a detailed list of what really makes your product or brand different and story angles will naturally unveil themselves. Does it work faster? Appeal to the time-crunched crowd in a how-to piece geared toward parents or college students. Is it more affordable? Tie it into a budgeting angle.

4. What’s a subject area you haven’t explored yet?

It’s easy to get into a rut when it comes to promoting your brand, but if you want good pickup, you need to be creative and think outside the box. Don’t fear uncharted territory – embrace it. Is there a fresh way you can approach what you’ve already been doing? Instead of just writing about how nutritious your food product is, can you somehow tie it to American’s changing eating habits or tips for fighting childhood obesity?

5. What would YOU want to read about in your favorite newspaper?

It may be difficult to detach yourself when you work so closely with a certain brand day in and day out, but ask yourself: If you opened up the Sunday paper and saw your headline and story, would you read it? Even if you aren’t necessarily part of the target audience for that particular campaign, you should still be intrigued by the information presented. If not, dig deeper.

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