By Zoe Arpin
Struggling to create blog content? Here are five ideas to get you inspired....
1. Write a list
PEOPLE. LOVE. LISTS. (You clicked on this blog post, right?!) Humans have short attention spans. Many people leave web pages in less than a minute. Receiving information in concise, bite-sized chunks is ideal. If the list is related to your business in some way, that’s great, for example “Five reasons you should start a blog”, or “Ten ways to improve your Facebook business page” But it can also be a way of sharing information about you as a person, such as “Three Netflix shows I’m loving right now”; or “Five things I did that helped me quit smoking.”
Whatever the topic, blog posts involving lists are nearly always some of the most popular on any blog.
2. Interview someone
We humans don’t just love lists: we’re insatiably curious about each other! Doing a Q&A with someone you think your audience will find interesting is always a great way to get traffic to your website. For example, if your target audience is working mums, you could feature a mum who runs their own business and get them to share tips for juggling home and work. Or if you run a blog about reading, you could interview an author (which admittedly will be easier if the author is quite early on in their career - J.K Rowling’s probably a bit busy!) You could even turn these interviews into a series and turn it into a regular feature.
The win-win about doing something like this is that the person you’ve interviewed will often promote the blog post, too. That’s double the promotion for your website and opening your business up to a whole new audience.
3. Answer commonly asked questions
No matter what your business is, I will bet that you often find yourself being asked certain questions time and time again. “How do you find inspiration for your products?” “Where do you find interesting content for your blog? “How do you find the time to run your business and look after your family?” Take your regular answer to a question you are often asked and elaborate. “I find inspiration for my products by doing X, reading Y and listening to Z.” Go into more detail on each point and you’ve got yourself a blog post.
By sharing your knowledge, you are not only educating your audience about a certain topic; you are positioning yourself as an “expert” in this area, and people will return to your blog when they want to learn more. Dietitian? Write a blog post advising people on how to manage Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Photographer? Write a post about how to best photograph a child in motion. Own a clothing line? Write a blog post about accessorising.
5. Write a “how to” post
This is a particularly popular type of educational blog post, and one which Google loves. Think about it: how many time have you typed “How to do XYZ” into the Google search bar find out how to do something? If your blog post title matches the question that someone else is looking for, your blog post is almost certainly going to be near the top of the search results, especially if it’s something specific. Illustrator and designer Sarah Renae Clark writes some really great “how to” blog posts related to illustration, such as “How to draw a rose.” Writing a “how to” blog post is just another way to position yourself as expert in a certain area in the eyes of potential and current customer.
Zoë Arpin of Teapot Communications specialises in helping small business navigate the world of marketing. She has a particular focus on copywriting, content creation and social media management. If marketing's not your cup of tea, Zoë would love to help you! You can reach her at her website, Facebook or Instagram