"What to write about?" - This is the first question that most marketers and entrepreneurs ask when they start to run their own or corporate blog. If the answer is still not found, very soon this question will begin to seem like a big unsolvable problem and will soon turn into a firm conviction "I am a useless writer, I have no imagination." Well, and then, quite predictable result: hands are falling, there is no longer any desire to blog, and, moving along the path of least resistance, in a short time the person refuses the blog altogether.
However, most marketers, who claim that they do not know how to find content, have not even tried to do it.
Here are five examples where you can find content for publication right now:
- Your company mailbox. Check incoming and outgoing emails. What did you write to your customers, and what questions did they ask you? Communicate with the sales department, technical support department and customer service department. Ask them what questions they have to answer most often. Based on this information, you can easily create a bunch of useful materials that will greatly simplify the lives of your customers.
- Internal documents and reports. Your reports and statistics are a wealth of useful information. If you keep reports on your actions, write out working and non-working tools, carefully keep statistics, collect case studies, results on working with clients and much more - you have horizons of opportunities before you. Show these materials to your readers, thus you will position yourself as an open and honest company that is responsible for your results. You can make a case of your own company. Our case, by the way, works fine.
- Dig in old blogs. Most likely, you read and comment on blogs on your subject, write competent comments (you are an expert in your niche), create discussions and respond to remarks of your interlocutors. Find those comments that were quite long, thoughtful and relevant to the topic of discussion. Give them the form of a small article and post. Refer to the author of the article that inspired you. He will be pleased (you know, the ego loves such things) and, perhaps, will share your material with his audience.
- Posts in social networks. Most likely, you published some thoughts about your activities in social networks, communicated with colleagues, recorded some insights, or shared your professional discoveries with your friends. Why leave this useful information only on the page on social networks? Your simple conversational style of posts is a great basis for a blog post. Small editing - and you have a finished article. In addition, by "likes" you can accurately determine how interesting and relevant future material is to your friends and audience.
- Pictures on your phone. The next time you look for a picture for your material, stop for a minute and pick up your mobile phone. Most likely, you always carry it with you, and you should have at least some great shots. Why buy someone else's photo if you can offer something really unique?
When you realize that you actually have huge resources for creating content for your consumers, you can easily find other sources for creating high-quality and expert materials.
Below you will find 21 questions, the answers to which will help you to wake up your inner creativity and put the production of your materials on the conveyor. A qualitative study of these issues will lead to the creation of original letters for distribution, fascinating stories, instructive lessons and weighty expert opinions.
Train your readers
If you are answering the questions below for the first time, it is better to write down the answers. This information may become a cornerstone for you and your company and will be useful to you more than once in the future.
What do your readers need to know before buying your product / ordering a service?
If you organize entertainment events, tell us how you do it and what your key points are. Suppose the moderator, by default, is included in your offer. Or do you take orders only from 50 people. Maybe you work exclusively in Moscow. Or provide life-size puppets.
Design your article as a numbered list, and in the headline with a number indicate the number of these important things. For example, "9 things that you need to know before ordering an event from us" or "13 unique features of the New Year's corporate party with company N". Use similar headings in the email subject line. Also, distribute similar materials to consumers during the sales process. People will be grateful to you if you tell them about different opportunities and help you make the right choice.
What could you advise your potential customers?
If you are selling eco-friendly products, explain to consumers why it is worth eating exactly eco-friendly products. Tell us how to eat right, what is good and bad, how to choose the right diet for yourself, how to gradually move from a normal diet to a healthy diet. As you can see, there can be quite a lot of such tips, so here you can also use a bulleted list and a number in the title. For example, "7 principles of healthy eating."
What question do your customers ask most often?
Have you noticed that most often in dealing with clients you answer the same questions? Creating materials based on these questions will simplify communication with customers and allow them to get the necessary information directly on your website, rather than waiting for a response from customer support or live chat staff. Write 2 versions of this material - a short answer for your FAQ page and a long answer for a post on your blog. Be sure to link them.
What questions do not your consumers ask, although you know for sure that they need this information?
Create comparative articles (reviews) that will help buyers determine the choice of certain goods / services. Use headings like "How to pick a good manager", "Best budget phones" or "How to choose the right cleaning agency?". Share these materials with your customers.
Can your customers solve their problems on their own? If so, how?
If your audience can solve the problem on their own, they will find a way to do it. If they do not find a solution with you, they will find it elsewhere. Therefore, write a simple practical guide to how to cope with a particular problem. Suppose you sell notebooks and handmade books. You can create a material, how to fix old, but very favorite books or to make a binding yourself. You will get more followers, traffic and respect if you are open and ready to help, rather than hide your secrets.
What do people who are trying to practice the same profession as you need to know? What is difficult in it? What are the benefits?
Although the target audience of this material may not be your consumers, you will find a grateful audience who will appreciate your expertise. You might even help someone in their professional growth. Tell them about the specifics of your work. Share your discoveries and practical experiences. These people will remember you for years.
What was the last professional event you attended? What have you learned?
Most likely, you are at industry conferences, some training events or business meetings of representatives of your field of activity. Create a material and list in it the main conclusions that you made after this event. Mention the people who spoke there, thank the organizers. Send them a link to this material as soon as it is released. If you took photos at an event, post them on social networks and mark on them the people with whom you spoke. Use these photos in your material, actively talk about your new friends and interlocutors.
What tools do you use every day? How to use them most effectively?
Write a list of your best tools and techniques. Let's say you are doing software. Write down what programming languages you use, what programs your designers prefer, how you maintain the effectiveness of your employees. Mention the brands that facilitate your work. What programs do you use to communicate with clients, with which companies do you cooperate most effectively and how do they help you in your business? Mention affiliate brands when you share your content on social networks. They will gladly share your positive feedback with their audience. If any of these brands have blogs, and they accept guest posts, offer yours. Do not forget to include in them the back link to your site.
Successful marketers are skillful storytellers. Of course, various lists attract attention and get more rassharivaniy, but your products and services sell exactly the stories that cause emotions to consumers. The following questions you need to answer as sincerely as possible. The individual voice of your company will give you a great competitive advantage.
Why do you love what you do?
This is the story of your passion. Attach it to the description of the company on your site. And also share this information on social networks. Use a picture that really means something to you. Suppose you sell machines for planting, because you love agriculture very much, you spent all your childhood in the village and understand that your mission in the future is to make major changes in the agriculture of your region or country. Feel free to talk about yourself and your commitment.
What does your audience want? What are you doing to satisfy her need?
This is directly related to the positioning of your brand. Suppose a group of moms have a need - to give their children the most diverse development in the period from 2 to 4 years. Kindergarten does not provide an individual approach, the child develops itself. Private kindergartens provide only partial tuition and control them within a small area. And you have a specialized school of early development. In it, children can dance, learn English, draw, cook, sing, participate in performances, play different roles, learn to write, count, etc. In addition, you have a child psychologist, and also fitness for mothers who have nothing to do when their children are in class. As soon as you show how you can satisfy this need of new mothers, you can wait for new customers.
What results can be achieved when using your product or service?
If you do not have your own cases yet, tell us about a company that used a product or service of this kind, for example, "How frukt.ru sold 81% more bananas using guerilla marketing." If you have already developed successful cases, feel free to write about your experience - "How our company sold 10 tons of bananas in 2 days." In the title, be sure to use numbers that reflect your success. Use specific details, customer quotes, numbers and statistics.
Is there a risky or unethical way to solve a problem that your company solves without risks? What can go wrong?
Use quotes and statistics to inspire confidence. If you are engaged in hiring staff, tell us, for example, what consequences hiring employees without a residence permit or registration in Moscow can lead to in order to save. Fines, deadlines, illegal activities - tell us about these moments, give real examples, do not hesitate to evoke emotions among readers. Spread this material on social networks, add a link so that readers can read the full article on your site.
What lessons can your audience get from a famous person, film, show, book or song?
Write a story that draws parallels with your work and some movie or famous person. The post will be entertaining and inspiring, for example, "Jean-Claude Van Damme web design techniques". Find people in your industry who also like this person, story or genre and share with them.
When people use your product or service, what advantages or disadvantages can they pay attention to? How are these moments perceived by the consumer?
Offer the leader of your industry your product and ask him to leave a review or make a short review. Better yet, chat with a few such experts. Together they will point out all the shortcomings of your product, give a professional assessment, as well as an assessment by the consumer. Add these materials to your article. As soon as the post is published, ask the opinion leader to share it with your audience.
How have you changed your approach or strategy since your inception?
Create a table or a beautiful infographic that reflects the changing trends of your industry. Make sure that the picture is displayed in social networks. Use a title that uses the current year's information, such as "Underwater Archeology 2013: What Has Changed?"
What posts have caused the most comments and shareings? Can you add something else about this topic?
Find a popular post on your topic that has caused a lot of comments and rassharivany. Think about what else you can tell about this topic. Write a new material on this basis. Offer a new article as a guest post in a blog or public of your industry, which did not consider this topic. Crosslink your post with your website.
Interviews and Reviews
What blogs or people helped you become who you are now?
Contact a blogger or expert who has inspired you and ask if he can give a short interview for you. Build your article based on the interview in the form of questions and answers, add some information about the expert, expand your personal and professional attitude to him, and do not forget to thank him. As soon as the material is published, ask him to share with your subscriber base.
What questions are most important in your field?
Create a small survey and send it to a large group of potential respondents. Social networks are the perfect place for this operation. You may be able to do this research with other members of your industry to get an even larger sample. Then collect all the results in a PDF material with beautiful graphs. Make sure you have a good design. Share it with survey respondents, opinion leaders, partners, and the media that work in your industry.
In order to answer the following questions, you will need courage and firm confidence in your opinion. Remove from your materials softening words like "maybe", "probably", "sometimes". Make an affirmative statement. This style is credible, works well in social media and helps to make new online dating. Get in touch with respected people in your industry with a similar mindset and attitude. They can be your agents of influence or even good friends. You can wake up the day after the release of the material and discover comments on the blog, new followers and haters. Or maybe nothing like that will happen. However, your task is to become an opinion leader in your industry.
What questions nobody in your industry wants to answer?
If possible, make this material a guest post in the most popular blog or news site of your business. They may really like this topic. If you place it on your website, check that this topic is popular for search engine queries. For example, "why do banks take such interest on transactions?".
What almost no one agrees with you?
Share this material in social networks, as well as with opinion leaders who do not share your point of view. Refer to them in your material. Engage them in an online discussion, then show your post and offer to write a review. They can comment, share or refer to your post on their own blog. Angry comments, disagreement or constructive criticism - it does not matter, you will achieve the desired result.
What do you think will happen in the future?
For example, a significant increase in the price of coal or the entry into the world market of a new machine-building concern. Except you, no one thinks so? Fine! Justify your arguments and share this information on social networks, make a guest post in a popular blog. The statement, which goes against the opinion of the majority, automatically attracts attention.
Well, did your imagination work?
Теперь вы, скорее всего, переполнены новыми идеями и мыслями. Распечатайте для себя эту статью или список вопросов, чтобы иметь возможность обращаться к нему в любое время. This is the easiest way to overcome the writing block or add a little variety to your publication calendar. Have a nice creativity!