We all (well, hopefully we all!) understand that when it comes to communications, we need to stay top of mind – which is why consistent communications are key. A few weeks ago we looked at why it’s so important to stay consistent, so now let’s look at how. Namely – when you’re talking to your customers every single week (or day!), how on earth do you come up with enough content ideas?
As storytellers, copywriters, and endless content creators, we’re constantly faced with the task of brainstorming and planning out content ideas (in fact, it’s one of our favourite things to do!) But when you have to do it for yourself, somehow it ends up much trickier! That’s why we’ve put together our best tips for how you can generate awesome blog topics with no trouble at all.
Think of your FAQs
What are the questions your customers are asking on a regular basis? When you meet with a new prospect, what are the things you consistently have to answer? Are there things they don’t understand, or get particularly worried about? Or, on the other hand, are there things you WISH they knew before meeting with you? Think of your blog as a way of educating your prospects and customers; these topics make great posts that deliver real value when written well.
Two brains are better than one
Don’t forget about your biggest asset when it comes to content ideas – your team. Try booking in a fun 20 minute brainstorm with the team to come up with as many ideas as possible. Not only does having fresh brains on the job help, you’ll usually find that each person has a unique take on different topics – perspectives that can be turned into unique blog posts!
Tap into your network – and collaborate!
Who says that everything on your blog has to be written by you? Try tapping into your clients, suppliers, or networks to see if they might be keen to contribute to your blog as well.
A blog post written by them, an interview, or quotes from them incorporated into your own post – whatever form it takes, it’s a great way to show you appreciate them and their expertise. As long as it’s related to what you do, and relevant to your audience, it can also be a great way to save you from having to create content. Plus – they will generally then share it via their own communication channels (usually social media or enewsletters), which means you’re getting in front of a whole new audience!
Use your data
Are you using Google Analytics? If not – why not? Make sure you know exactly which blog posts people are reading by checking out the stats on your Google Analytics account. Try to create new content based on the ones that have done well in the past. Did a how-to guide seem to resonate with people? What other how-to guides could you write? Or if particular topics seem to always do well – is there another angle you could take on that topic?
Go back to your basics
Consider your key messages, or the main messages that you want to get across. Could one of them be explored more? How can you tell a story around that specific key message – could you show how you’re living that message through a case study or interview with a client? Or could you look more deeply into the problems your customers are facing to better illustrate why you’re needed?
Just a word of warning though – these types of posts can end up being a little too sales-y, so make sure you’re always asking yourself: “Is this providing my target audience with value?”
What can you give an opinion on or add to?
With social media, we’re surrounded by news these days. But so many news items only look at the basics – which leaves a fantastic opportunity for you to provide an opinion, educate people about the topic, or add to the conversation with a well-timed, thoughtful blog post.
Try creating a Google Alert for topics that matter to you, and when things pop up that you think you could add to, you’re all set! Just aim to get it out quickly – the more timely the content, the more likely people with share and engage with it (don’t forget to get it out on social media quickly as well – and encourage people to comment and share their own opinions too!)
Consider content themes
Blogs don’t just have to be one-offs either – try grouping some blog posts around a specific theme, such as the time of year, or a particular issue facing people. Whether it’s what you need to be looking at in the lead up to Christmas, a specific social issue that connects with what you do, or your own original theme, using a theme can often spark more ideas for content and force you to dig a little deeper.
Plus, in this world of fast content, a lot of people actually like being given the opportunity to fully engage with a thought-provoking topic. Perhaps that’s why the ideal length of a blog post takes about seven minutes to read (according to Buffer anyway!)
Share your findings
Have you done any research recently? Or do you collect data about your customers’ results? Could you regularly report on the findings from what you do? Is there a number or statistic that you could come out and share with people?
If you’re big on numbers, or happen to collect a lot of data, you could be in a great position to share findings based on that data – and the more impressive or surprising those stats are, the better! People love finding out surprising facts – or having the numbers tell them that they’re doing the right thing. Just be sure that you’re allowed to share any data or information before you put it out there!
You’re an expert in what you do – so undoubtedly you’ll have some opinions about what’s coming up in your industry or field. Particularly at the end or start of the year, think about what you believe is going to change. Whether based on years of observation, lots of research, or gut instinct, people are interested in trends and knowing what you think is coming – so they can consider what might be changing too!
Tell your story
Do people know who you are? Who your team are? Do they understand why you started the business in the first place or how you got to where you are today? If not, tell them! People do business with people they like and trust, so telling your own stories is a powerful way to build connections and start conversations with people. Don’t be afraid to show off your people!
So there you go – ten ways to find blog content ideas even when you feel like you’ve hit a brick wall! Just remember – keep it valuable and relevant and your customers will always appreciate it.
And if you need any help planning and writing awesome blog content – just get in touch!