Blogging is a low to no-cost way for marketers to create owned content on a consistent basis. A consistent blogging schedule of high quality information creates a great way for your customers and prospects to gain a better understanding of how you can help them and the smarts that exist within your organization.
In fact, B2B marketers that incorporate blogging as part of their content strategy generate 67% more leads than those that do not. So if you aren’t blogging, it’s time to start.
At TopRank Marketing, we publish a new post everyday Monday through Friday. Each month we create a blogging plan as part of our larger content marketing strategy that covers identified pain points of our customers, trending topics, information related to our service areas and more. With the amount of content that there is to create, sometimes it can be difficult to figure out exactly what to write about, or how to put a creative spin on metaphor on the blog posts.
If you’re looking for ways to find inspiration for blog post topics, you’ve come to the right place. Below are 5 ways that you can find great ideas for blog posts, no matter how much content you create.
#1 – Customer Insights
Your customers are and endless treasure trove of information for content creation. It doesn’t matter if they purchase from you one time, or you have an ongoing relationship. There is always a way to extract valuable insights.
If your client teams meets with customers regularly, provide them with a couple seeded questions to ask in their next update to extract information that you can use for blogging or other content creation. Also, if your team is on-point, they’ll find ways to extract great information from clients when they’re happy and when they’re having an issue.
Website contact forms can also provide a lot of insight into what customers come to you looking for and how you can help them. Review these frequently to gain additional knowledge.
But let’s say that you don’t have ongoing access to customers in the traditional sense. Surveys can provide a wealth of information about customer needs and can be completed on the customer’s schedule.
In a recent client engagement, TopRank Marketing was able to survey over 20,000 customers and received over a 50% response rate. With that information our team was able to develop user personas, and gain a better understanding of what type of blog content should be use to target ideal customers.
#2 – Schedule Time to Brainstorm
As long as there is more than one person within your marketing department, there is always an opportunity to brainstorm. You may find that all you need is a team member who understands the demand to create killer blog content and can spitball ideas with you.
Chances are, you’ll have some duds, but you’ll also probably uncover some great content ideas that you wouldn’t have otherwise considered.
Internal collaboration doesn’t always have to be within your marketing department. Other team members have a ton of information that you can use for content. You may just need to get creative in the way that you extract information from them.
#3 – Dive Into Analytics
Your analytics provide more data than you will need. When digging into Google Analytics, review information pertaining to:
This information will not only dive deeper into who your visitors are, but how they are interacting with your site, what method they’re using to find your blog content and multi-channel conversions.
#4 – Play Off Another Popular Post
If you’ve found that a particular topic performs well with your audience, consider running a series about that topic that takes different approaches or explains differing levels of information.
If your topic for example was Content Marketing, you could publish 101, 102 and 103 level posts. You could also augment these posts with interviews, case studies and additional information while linking them all together.
#5 – Use Tools For Topic Discovery & Title Creation
If you’re really just hitting your head against the wall trying to come up with topics or even blog post titles, there are some tools that you can use to help.
BuzzSumo: Search the top topics by shares within a specified time frame. You can easily enter the keywords that you’d like to search for and see what types of titles and topics performed the best.
Portent: This title making tool generates creative titles based on the topic or keyword that you enter.
HubSpot: If you’re looking for even more insight based on your selected topics, this generator asks you to enter three nouns to generate your (sometimes) perfect blog topic or title.
Go Forth & Start Blogging!
Everyone at one point or another will have a day where the blog ideas just aren’t flowing. Instead of getting frustrated, use one of the tried and true methods above for finding inspiration. Also, if you recognize that you need to add more blogging (or other content) to your digital marketing mix but just don’t have the resources, reach out to TopRank Marketing’s experts for help.
Image via Shutterstock
Great post Ashley
I must admit it is a struggle keeping on top of blogging but as you outline frequency is the key.
Thats an amazing stat from TopRank to achieve a 50% response rate phenomenal result but congrats to them on that.
Loved also your tool recommendations and am checking them out now for my next blog post. Thanks for the inspiration and keep up the good work.
Andrew Pogorzelski says
Great advice and information about finding inspiration for blog posts. Using analytics to see what your audience is reading and interested in is a great way to discover new ideas and topics to write about. As an aspiring writer majoring in advertising, it is often difficult to generate ideas that are both interesting to me and especially for my potential audience.
For companies, using analytics and customer insights will allow bloggers to find topics that are engaging to the audience and important to them personally.
The importance of allowing yourself time to think and brainstorm cannot be stated enough. Taking time to plan ahead and making a schedule will allow bloggers to not feel rushed under the gun of a deadline. Instead, taking the time to think relieves stress about writing and helps writers get into their creative zone. Listen to your customers and let their insights guide your topics, but also think of new content that will spark interest and engage users with your blog post by thinking outside of the box.