Blog post ideas – the bane of the business owners life, who is convinced that no one will be interested in their subject, that they don’t have the capacity to write a helpful blog and that it has all been done before anyway!
In this post I assist you to discover topics that you can write about. I promise that as you write you will unearth more and more ideas – stumbling upon new titles once you are in the flow of writing about your industry.
New posts often stem from articles that have already been written. I often think to myself “I must expand on that later”.
If you get yourself into the mindset you can come up with blog post ideas during the every day running of your business, as you will see below.
A mind map for business blog post ideas
I return to pen and paper when brainstorming initial ideas. ‘Scribbling’ is by far the quickest way to record thoughts without distraction.
A mind map, which is the lollipop diagram you likely last pencilled at school, helps to initiate ideas for blogging topics, You could even put the ideas onto a calendar and be sure to write one or two a month.
You can refer back to your mind map when writer’s block sets in.
Start with obvious topics related to your business and your customers.
Write them in the centre of the paper and circle each.
For example: WEBSITES, BLOG, SEARCH ENGINE, TECHNOLOGY.
Around those ideas write associated subjects.
WEBSITE – navigation, speed, website optimisation, writing, images, design.
Link correlating words by drawing a line between them.
For example WEBSITE OPTIMISATION correlates with SEARCH ENGINE.
Your initial, very broad topics start to become narrower and more specific, enabling you to find niches.
Ask employees, spouses, even children to help you. It can be used a trust building exercise.
Topics may seem obscure at first but writing about them can broaden reach, capturing an audience that doesn’t even know your product exists.
Items to kick off your blogging mind map
- Geographic area.
- Buying / production process.
- Materials used.
- Everyday tasks.
- Customer problems.
- Related sports or activities.
- Famous people / industry influencers.
- Related recipes or how to articles.
- Pros and cons, positives and negatives.
Read about your industry to create ideas
Reading content written by other people within your industry will inspire you in writing your blog, whether you agree with it or feel controversy.
When something inspires you send it to yourself in an email to remind yourself to start a blog post. Note down the part that triggered your interest or the point may be lost.
Topical, news-worthy subjects are a fantastic way of appearing in searches before other websites.
ContentGems for blogging
ContentGems offer a break down of all the articles across the internet that relate to those topics will be emailed to you daily or weekly.
This can spark ideas for blog posts, and allow you to be current and keep on top of the questions your customers are asking. Sign up to ContentGems for free.
Google Alerts for blog post ideas
Google Alerts are really useful to keep up to date with industry news, trends and to uncover the next topic to write about.
An email will be sent to you when your chosen keyword or key phrase is mentioned, internet wide. This can be limited geographically if needed. Set alerts around your products, projects, services, competitors or brands.
You can also set Google Alerts to monitor when your company, a competitor company or a client is mentioned on the web. Jenn T Grace has a useful and informative page on Google Alerts: jenntgrace.com/google-alerts
Using Quora to discover questions
Quora is a popular social hub of questions and answers. Anyone can ask anything. Real people answer. Search Quora by topic to find many of the questions that your customers ask.
You will be surprised at the things people ask, and this can give you confidence to write a blog post.
Use your customers for blog post ideas
The challenges your customers face are the problems you should be answering.
Go through old emails and dig out questions that people have asked you in the past.
You can also directly ask customers what they would like to learn from you. Conversation often spurs ideas.
Remember tasks or topics that seem boring to you could be extremely interesting to your customer base, and are probably regularly searched.
Using social media to get to know your audience
Social media can help when thinking up blog post ideas
Watch your customers profiles online. You can find out a lot about them, such as:
- Who they follow.
- Who influences them the most.
- What communities and forums are they in.
- Are there questions that consistently arise, that you might be able to answer?
Record key terms
Once you have gathered up industry topics and information, the ideas will start rolling in.
This is the point at which you should create a spreadsheet or list of all the key terms you have gathered. Categorise them so that you have a clear visual and you do not repeat your topics.
Research key terms
Don’t start to write straight away. Once you have lots of good keywords do some research online.
A quick tip is to search the keywords on Google: once the results appear scroll to the bottom of the page. Here Google displays similar searches.
There is no point in writing a blog post that no one is looking for.
Do not target the most highly searched, specific keyword you find. You will be competing with multi million pound companies.
Choose long tail key terms that have low competition, and that you are able to rank well for.
Ten clicks might be enough to support your business for that whole year.
It is easier to start ranking for low competition terms, then build up to ranking for more sought after terms.
Starting to write a business blog post
Use your chosen set of key terms as your title and your post slug (or file name), and use those terms throughout the post, but always write for humans not for search engines.
Answer questions in a detailed, informative blog post. Go back and look at your related key terms, can you cover those in the same post? Blog posts can rank for more than one key term.
Spend time on it. I sometimes take weeks mulling over my posts.
Gathering topics for your next blog post
Note down other topics that might crop up as you write.
When you share a post across social media networks ask, “what do you want to see next?”.
The responses will likely lead you to more ideas or may help you to repurpose your old content.
I hope this post has demonstrated that it’s very easy for you, the enthusiastic business owner, to find blog post ideas when frequently reading industry news, and writing blog posts of your own.
Some links to help:
Websites to help with brainstorming for bloggers
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