With all this talk of using video, podcasts, and even voice interfaces like Alexa for content marketing, blogging may seem like an old idea.
But we haven’t reached the demise of the written word just yet. Blogging is very much alive and kicking in B2B marketing. And for a professional services company, a blog is one of the most valuable assets your website can have.
The more you blog, the more chances you have of capturing the attention of your buyer personas. But maintaining a healthy blog pipeline can be challenging. How can you consistently come up with interesting and relevant blog posts that will attract (and maintain) the attention of your prospects?
To help revitalise your efforts, we share 14 simple methods for generating new blog ideas.
1. Hold regular brainstorm sessions
Even if they’re not writing blog posts, your organisation is full of people who know your business and industry inside out, and who may be able to offer a fresh perspective on topics to write about. By holding regular brainstorming sessions and inviting people from across the business you can generate some great ideas.
2. Leverage your buyer personas
If you’re doing content marketing right, your blog topics will be led by your buyer personas. Having a clear picture of your target customers is the first step to creating content that resonates with them. What are their questions and doubts? These will provide you with instant ideas for blog topics.
3. Use keywords
Keywords are always a great starting point for blog ideas. Identify keywords with high search volume and low difficulty (meaning they're easier to rank highly for), and centre your blog posts around them to drive traffic to your site. SEMrush is a great tool to use.
4. Follow the news
News and current affairs can provide an invaluable starting point for blog ideas. Take the newsjacking approach and add your own commentary to a current news story to attract prospects from search. But be careful to balance out the current affairs posts which may have a limited lifespan with evergreen content that will always stay relevant.
5. Write about industry trends
Naturally, you’ll be keeping abreast of trends in your industry. And as your blog is a great opportunity to showcase your expertise, writing about trends provides an easy win. While it may seem like everyone out there is blogging about ‘trends in 2018’, these types of posts can help you to demonstrate thought leadership.
6. Look at what others are talking about
To stand out in your industry, you need to be part of the conversation. There are plenty of tools out there to help you keep track of the hottest topics in your industry. These can be a great source of inspiration for blog posts. Create an account with BuzzSumo to find the most shared content on a topic relevant to your industry. Or sign up to Feedly to keep an eye on topics that top blogs in your industry are writing about.
7. Conduct interviews
Interviews can bring an interesting perspective and extra depth to your blog. You could interview a current customer about their experience of working with your company. Or how about a Q&A session with people working in your business? And interviews with industry or subject matter experts or key influencers could provide a different dimension that may appeal to your audience.
8. Source ideas from your FAQs
Your FAQs are the burning questions your prospects and customers have about your service. So naturally, they provide great blog post opportunities. You could create a top 10 list or drill down into the detail of one or two key questions.
9. Research your competitors
Is there anything your competitors are writing about that you haven’t touched on? Are there key questions they have addressed that you haven’t? These gaps may be the difference between a customer choosing to do business with them rather than you. And while you’re there, take a look at their FAQs too and make it your aim to answer the questions they don’t appear to be addressing.
10. Get inspired by research
Industry research is always a great source of inspiration. Summarise the research for your audience or hone in on a key finding. Add your own commentary to give depth and personality to the post.
11. Revisit an old topic from a different angle
It’s easy to think that once you’ve covered a topic that you can’t write about it again. But when you think about it, there’s only so many topics you can cover in your industry, and it's how we approach those topics that makes the difference. Perhaps you have previously produced a list post and there’s the potential to write separate in-depth posts on some of the points you included. Or, maybe you’ve written a generic post targeted at a range of sectors and could repurpose it to address one sector in particular.
12. Repurpose other content
If you already know a topic is of interest to your prospects and customers, capitalise on it. Take a popular eBook and create a series of blog posts from it. Build a blog post around a case study or testimonial to create powerful decision stage content. Or, repurpose a piece of video content or a podcast into a blog post.
13. Create a mini-series
If you’ve got a good idea for a topic, it's worth considering if you could turn it into a few posts rather than just one. For example, if you’re discussing the pros and cons of three different approaches, could you write a separate blog post for each approach? If so, that’s three blog posts you’ve created from just one idea.
14. Find opportunities to link to other pages on your site
Take a read through the pages of your website. Are there topics you haven't written about yet? Find a topic, write a blog post on it, and link readers through to the relevant page on your site. You can also add links to the page directing people to the blog post - like you would with a pillar page. The more you can sync up the different areas of your site, the more opportunities you have to entice visitors to explore more of your site and your company.
Whether you’re stuck in a blogging rut or are just looking for new ways to create great blog ideas, hopefully, this post has provided you with some useful pointers to get you going. Coming up with new blog ideas doesn’t have to be a laborious or daunting task. Taking just one of these methods may generate an abundance of ideas for blog posts.