I have just read a really insightful article on Search Engine Watch, looking at free SEO tools that can help you to understand your customers better, so that you can develop better content marketing plans.
I was aware (and regularly use) the Google Keyword tool and Google Trends. However, I was not aware of "Answer the Public". I have just had a play with it and found it really illuminating. Below is Search Engine Watch's description of the tool. I have been travelling around EMEA (Russia, South Africa, Spain and Turkey) over the last few weeks delivering digital marketing training for Avon. So, I thought I'd try out the toll with their core brand.
"Answer the Public: Typically SEO’s talk about keywords or keyphrases when we describe what people type into the search box, if we were being more accurate we should probably call them search queries. I try to encourage myself to call them queries more often. That’s because the person looking at the screen is ultimately asking a question. It might not always be phrased as a question but sometimes it is. And that’s why I’m a huge fan of Answer the Public, it’s a tool with one simple purpose, understanding the questions people have about a topic. When you start typing into Google it tries to guess what you were typing before you’ve even finished typing. These suggestions are triggered by two things, search volume and mention volume. Are people searching using those words and are websites using them as well? These suggestions are the datapoints which feed Answer the Public. You type in a seed concept and it spits out visualisations on questions people have around that topic. Proper genuine customer insight from a free tool. Here are just two screenshots from the tool – there’s a business plan, content strategy and social media programme right here in these screen shots" Search Engine watch