When I talk to clients about blogging the most common question I get is “what would I write about?” It’s actually not as hard as you might think. Once you get started, I’ll bet you can easily come up with dozens of ideas.
To decide what topics to write about first you need to remember the purpose of your blog. If you are blogging for your business your goals are a) to improve your search engine ranking b) to increase traffic to your website c) to establish yourself as an expert in your field d) to generate new leads and/or sales.
What are questions you frequently get from potential customers? If you answer each of those questions in a blog post you will be answering people’s objections before they ever speak with you. These can be common questions that everyone asks, or unusual questions that you only get once in a while.
What’s new in your industry that customers need to know. You don’t need to go into the mechanics of how those changes impact the work that you do, but you need to let prospects know that you are up-to-date on the current information. For example, if you are bookkeeper or accountant changes in Timex laws and how they impact customers are excellent topics.
What Makes You Mad?
Are there things that other people in your industry do that just drive you wild? Things you feel are unprofessional or a disservice to your customers. Write about them explaining why this is an important issue, how you handle the situation and what questions people should ask before hiring a professional in your field.
For example, I keep getting clients who have brand new websites (created in the past year) that are not responsive … meaning they don’t work on mobile devices. Some businesses are getting upwards of 75% of their traffic from mobile devices but if their website doesn’t look right on a smart phone, all that traffic will go elsewhere. That drives me wild!
Unicorns and Fairy Tales
Are there myths or misconceptions about your industry, product or service? Each myth could be its own post or you could create a “top 10 myths about [your industry]”.
How to use your products or how to perform a particular task that your customers struggle with are popular topics in just about any industry. For example, a handyman could write an article about how to prop up a sagging front porch. Now a lot of people will think “I don’t want to show people how to do something because they will do it themselves”. It’s true that some people will take the information you provide and DIY it, but they probably weren’t going to be your customers anyway. Others will look at your “how to” article and think it’s just too much work and hire you to do it for them.
Seasonal topics don’t have to be related to holidays. Just about every business has certain cycles, things that happen seasonally. For example, an auto mechanic might write a spring article about why a summer tune-up is important and an autumn article about choosing the right snow tires. Your prospects will find the information useful, timely and it may prompt them to book an appointment.
If there are books written about your industry, write a review or a short summary of the information provided in the book.
News or Current Affairs
While not all news stories will be applicable to your business, if you can why not piggyback on a topic that’s already generating interest by putting your take on the issue? For example, if the stock market crashes, a financial planner could write about how to weather the ups and downs of the market.
Read Other Blogs
Do a search for other blogs on your topic, follow them using a tool like Feedly and use them for inspiration. For example, if there’s a topic that everyone is writing about you can add your take on it. If someone writes something you disagree with write a blog post about why they’re wrong.
Since one of your goals is to get more traffic to your website from Google, use Google AdWords Keyword Planning Tool. This tool will give you an idea of what topics people are searching for in Google. You can then use those specific keywords to help you come up with topics and write headlines.
Use This Planning Tool
The website HubSpot offers a Blog Topic Generator Tool that will create five topic ideas based on words you enter into their tool. Not all the topics will be useful, but it will be good for jumpstarting your list.
Now You Go
The suggestions here should easily allow you to generate a long list of blog topics. Before you start your blog I recommend sitting down, using the suggestions in this article and generating a list of at least 20 blog topic ideas; 50 is better. If you can do this then you know you have enough material to start a blog. Then you can just work your way through the list as you start writing.
Are you wondering if it makes sense for you to start a blog? Why not set up a complimentary consultation with me and we’ll discuss your options. Schedule a free call with Andrea