5 Tips for Finding Fresh Blog Topics
Regularly adding new content to your website is a proven way to build traffic at a low cost. Some people add their content as blog posts. Others write articles and save them as new website pages. Regardless how it’s done, this process, called content marketing by many, is proven to be the most efficient way to increase traffic to your website.
In December I addressed the basics of content marketing in “How to Get 1,000 Visitors to your Website for Free.” New content attracts new website visitors who will turn into new sales leads and customers for your growing business.
Writing new content is great. But how can you be sure that your content is attracting the right kind of visitors for your unique business? In short, you have to know what to write about.
The Challenge of Finding Good Topics
For most small businesses, coming up with just 25 different topics to write about is a big enough challenge.
After you have worked your way through the most obvious topics such as describing each product or service you sell, providing answers to frequently asked customer questions, and announcing company news, finding something to write about can get a little more tricky.
The best topics are ones that are both relevant to your prospective customers and interesting enough to separate your business from your competitors. These articles catch the attention of website visitors who are most likely to want to work with your business in the future.
But how do you find these topics? Here are five places to look for a topic for your next blog post or article.
1. Current Events
One of my favorite ways to come up with a topic for a blog post is to check the day’s headlines. You might think, “What does today’s news about the economic recession or the current state of affairs in the Middle East have to do with my business?” At first glance, probably not much. But there is usually some way to tie the two together.
Search engines love when you do this because the topics are fresh and match what is currently trending online.
2. Old Blog Articles
Review your website analytics tool to find blog posts or articles that have performed well for your business in the past. Did an article receive a particularly high amount of traffic? Did a blog post receive a large number of comments? Was it talked about in social media?
If so, then you have proof that a specific topic sparked a lot of attention. There are a few ways to bring an old popular blog post back to life as fresh new content on your website.
Has the information changed since it was first written? If so, write an updated version. Could the topic be explained in more depth? If so, expand and provide more details. Are there more perspectives on the topic? If so, re-write the article from another point of view.
Make sure your new article mentions the original article and includes a link back to it.
Chances are you’re not the only company that provides your products or services. If not, you can use your competitors as a source of inspiration for interesting topics.
Subscribe to your competitors’ blogs and email newsletters so that you receive their content automatically. Many companies publicly announce information that they probably should have only shared with their customers. Use this as an opportunity to keep an eye on your competition and to learn about the topics they’re talking about with their customers.
If they think something is worth writing about, maybe you should too.
4. Talk to Someone
As the old sales adage goes “people buy from people, not businesses.” To that end, including your personality and maybe a few customers too is a good way to get personal with your website content.
An interview is a good way to change the pace of content on your website. Use interviews to introduce relevant content or just give yourself a break from having to create everything yourself.
Or consider interviewing your employees. They’ll have a slightly different perspective that may resonate perfectly with your company’s audience. Good interviews are done via video and include a text transcript but text alone is still worth it.
As the interviewer you just need to ask a few simple questions about your products or services and let your interviewee provide the answers. Post the whole thing as a new blog post or article page on your website.
One of the best ways to find a topic for your blog is to ask for help. Recruit someone else to share their perspective — on something related to your business — that they find interesting. In fact, just about anyone that you would chose to interview for your blog — from 4. above — could probably also write an article for the blog too.
Since your prospective customers aren’t all the same, they’ll appreciate different perspectives that other writers can bring to your content. Chances are your employees, customers, and vendors have lots of fresh ideas they’re willing to share.
Also don’t hesitate to ask well known subject-matter experts in your industry to prepare a guest article for your website too. Let them know that you’ll give them credit for their article in the form of an author byline and that you’ll promote the article on your website and in your other marketing channels like social media.
The Reward Is Worth the Effort
Coming up with topics for blog posts week after week can be tricky. But the reward for creating good content on a regular basis is a steady stream of new visitors to your website and new sales leads and customers for your business.
When prospective customers use the search engines to find content on hot topics, will they find your website, or your competitors? Use these five methods to make sure they find you.
How else do you come up with topics for your blog? Let me know in the comments below.