Business blogs are essential for providing the content that search engines crave. But great blogging requires effort and a regular stream of ideas and topics. Here's some tips to help you with that.
[This post was adapted from an earlier post published on April 8, 2015]
A solid business blog is often the central component of effective inbound marketing. And most marketers will make great use of business blogging. Even though blogging has been around almost as long as the Internet itself, the medium is still a viable and powerful content marketing channel.
Just consider these recent survey statistics from CMI:
- 80% of B2B marketers and 75% of B2C marketers include blogging among their current techniques.
- 52% of B2B and 51% of B2C marketers expect that blogging will be their most critical tactic for achieving success in the upcoming year.
But the never-ending demand for new material, fresh ideas, and relevant content can be stressful.
Part of the challenge is the high frequency of post that a good business blog requires. Typically, the more frequent the blog posts, the better. But this, of course, requires a regular supply of blog post ideas and topics.
And these can become difficult to generate, especially day after day, week after week.
Finding Ideas For New Topics and Approaches
If you are the one responsible fro creating and publishing a blog for your company, the challenge can be frustrating at best. Odds are this is not your only responsibility. You are probably busy doing everything else your regular job calls for plus you have this blog task to keep up with on top of all that.
Unless you've been provided with a pre-made list of blog topics for every week for the rest of the year, you'll have to come up with your own blog post ideas. But even good topic ideas can leave your blog looking stale and uninspired.
Changing up your approach to writing your posts or acquiring your content information can help to make both the blog and the process fresh and engaging.
Seven Tips for Generating Blog Post Content
Here are seven different methods for coming up with dozens of new topics and ideas for your ongoing business blogging needs:
Create a list of customer FAQs
If you've been in business long enough you've already answered the same questions from customers and clients time and again. In fact, your website might have a list of FAQs posted somewhere just to address those common questions.
What if you were to create a list of the 20, 50 or even 100 most often asked customer questions? And what if you were to create a blog topic from each one of those questions? If you had at least 52 questions you could easily create a blog post idea for every week for a year!
Offer your expert opinion on a topic
You have opinions. In fact, you probably have quite a few thoughts on topics within your industry. Try taking a different approach when you read through industry publications and journals and start taking notes. Write down subjects for discussion and topics that are "top of mind" in your field.
Now draft your own take on these subjects and create a series of blog posts around them. They don't have to be controversial or novel - just informative and relevant. Remember: you are an authority in your business and in your field, so share what you know.
Write a contrarian position on an industry issue
Okay, so maybe you do have a controversial opinion on something. Perhaps you have thoughts about a subject that few others in your field agree with. A blog post is an excellent medium and forum for putting it out there. And if you really think about it, you probably can come with a number of topics that you have some strong feelings or opinions about.
At worst, you may find that most people tend to agree with you or have little to say. At best, you may stir up some controversy among your readers and generate some interesting comments and feedback. Good for you! Reader interaction is gold for bloggers and the more the better.
Create a series of customer interviews
People like to read about people.(And people really like to read about themselves!) So having an occasional interview post can change things up a bit, provide some valuable insights and perspective for both you and your readers, and give you ideas for future blog posts.
This same approach can be taken further by approaching and interviewing experts in your field and others who can offer valuable and relevant information, insights and experience for your readers. You probably have a handful of prospective interview candidates even in your own company!
Write periodic "newsjacking" posts
This approach requires that you stay abreast of news and events that have at least some bearing on your industry or your customers. Newsjacking is a term that essentially means leveraging or capitalizing on a current news event. In our case by writing a post about it in almost real-time.
The event does not have to be in or about your particular industry, although that makes it easier, but it does need to be very recent and you need to make a connection to your business and your customers. This is a type of post that is difficult to plan for, but can be very successful and engaging for readers.
Produce a series of book or product reviews
Just about every industry has something new being created that can be reviewed. For some businesses, books are written regularly and can provide a wealth of blog post opportunities. For many other industries there are new products and services being produced, all of which can also be reviewed and written about.
As an authority in your field, your readers will look to you to provide them with an expert opinion and perspective on products, services, and published works. And every new item can represent another fresh blog post idea for your blogging needs.
Create a regular feature post
This is an approach that can provide you with a "ready-made" blog post either every week or every month. For example, a monthly review or round-up of topics, events, or even your own published blog posts can be a legitimate subject.
Some blogs feature a video post once a week or once per month. This not only provides a change of pace for your blog, it can give you a welcome break in the form of one less post to write!
Posting a regular feature can also give your more loyal readers something consistent to look forward to each week, or each month. In addition, if you choose to produce a round-up of your own posts, this can generate increased blog visits from readers who may have missed particular posts earlier on.
Consider Getting Professional Help With Your Business Blog
An additional tip for creating and publishing an effective business blog is to get outside help. Inbound marketing agencies, such as BroadVision Marketing, can offer expertise and tools that the typical business owner or marketing manager may not have.
It often helps to have an professional marketer's perspective to assess your content marketing strategy. Acquiring the insights and assessment of a third-party professional can be an investment that will bring a quantifiable return.
BroadVision Marketing offers all this and more. Get your Free Complimentary Inbound Marketing Session to help you make an informed decision or call BroadVision Marketing at 707-799-1238.