Blogs are a way to engage and inform your potential customers about your business and industry. They can be packed with fascinating, quality content and a whole lot more to boot, but if you choose the wrong subject, they can also be lustreless, turgid and crammed with keywords and very little of actual worth.
Whether you blog using the the former or the latter depends very much on what you choose to write about.
The process of deciding what to blog about can be arduous and frustrating, but laying solid groundwork is always worth it in the long term. With careful planning you’ll end up with content which will bring readers back to you time and again – and keep your bounce rate nice and low.
Do your research
A good first step when looking to decide on your next blog post (or series of posts) is to hit up your own stats, because they’re a goldmine of valuable information, such as what posts have generated the most discussion, which articles have connected with your readership and been shared the most and what content has given you your biggest number of page views.
While you’re delving about in there you should also check out what search terms have led readers to your work. Sometimes, something which you deem to be a miss or a bit too niche, can hit the mark with your audience, and knowing your audience is critical.
Before you leave the statistics, you should also take note of subjects that you’ve covered, irrespective of how well received they’ve been. Avoiding duplicate content should be a priority, as it can drive people away and even detrimentally affect your Google ranking.
Understanding your readership
Once you’ve assembled all of that information, you should look to strike out, and the next step to understanding your readership (or targeted demographic), putting yourself in their shoes. What are they searching for? What do they want to know? What vital information from your expansive knowledge can you share with them?
Engaging over social media is vital if you’re looking to build an accurate picture of your audience – after all, providing them with content that they want to read should be your number one goal.
Social media outreach will tell you what people are talking about, what questions they’re asking and what they’re searching for in Google, it will also allow your readers to feel part of the content you’re creating, which will keep them engaged.
Finding other subjects using Google
Once you’ve begun to build a picture of what your readership is searching for on Google, you can check out Google’s “people also ask” links, which should help you to deliver content which is oblique to your readers’ interests but still relevant, helpful and entertaining.
Google Keyword Planner can also give you an insight into what your industry is talking about. Although it was set up to help people decide what to bid on using Google AdWords, it gives a good overview of the keywords your industry is using to get people to their site. Choose keywords that have relatively low competition, but a decent amount of monthly searches.
Lastly, and this one should be a no-brainer, is to keep an eye on trends.
Trends on Facebook, Twitter and the rest will paint a bigger, more generalised picture of the discourse, giving you more angles to cover and more opinions to consider; resulting in connections with a wider range of readers.
Once you’ve gathered your information, come to know ‘your people’ and taken on-board what they are speaking about, you’re set. Then, all that remains is for you to deliver concise, punchy content, distilling the key topics of the day down to bite-sized morsels, for people to digest!
If you’re struggling to form your blogging plan, Blue Cactus Digital can help. We can create a blog plan for you, taking the headache out of idea generation and ensuring your blog posts are perfectly aligned to the subjects your readers are looking for. What’s more, we can even write the blog posts for you, not only saving you time so you can focus on building your business, but ensuring you hit the sweet spot every time.