I was talking to a client the other day about blogging more when the inevitable question came up: how do I come up with good blog content?
Coming up with good ideas can seem daunting. I remember that when I first started blogging in 2009 the biggest challenge was to simply figure out what topics I should be writing about.
Fortunately, there’s an easy way to find an ongoing supply of good topic ideas when you’re blogging for business, especially for B2B service providers.
Client Questions Are the Best Source for Blog Content
Think of all the questions that clients ask you. What are the ones that you find yourself answering over and over again? (You know, the ones where you sound like the proverbial broken record? Yes, I am dating myself with that reference!) Each of these questions represents a possible topic that you can write about.
There are several benefits to using clients questions for your blog content:
- First and foremost, you provide your clients with the answer that they were looking for! As we all know, if one person has a question, then someone else is bound to have the same question. By writing it down, you provide an answer for not just one person but for others as well.
- You can support your offline sales process. When you meet someone at a networking event, for example, you’ll probably follow up with an email at some point. If someone asked you about a question that you have already answered, you can include a link to your post in your response. This helps the person by giving them the information that they were looking for, and it helps get them to your site, too.
- It helps with search engine optimization for your website. Each post you write can be indexed by the search engines and give online searchers one more way of finding your site.
To get started, you can simply write down the top 10 questions that you get asked regularly. Take each question and write a post. I’ve found that the best way to write this type of post is to imagine that you are providing an answer to your ideal client who has asked you that question. Explain your answer as clearly as you can. Avoid jargon and don’t make assumptions about what people should know about a topic; remember that they’re asking you for a reason! Be sure to also link to any supporting material as appropriate. This should include other blog posts that you’ve written as well as external information that might be relevant. When you’re done writing, be sure to optimize your post using the WordPress SEO plugin.
If it’s easier for you, you can actually spend a day writing several posts and then publish them weekly over a 10-week period rather than publishing them all at once. This will give you regular, new content for almost three months! In fact, you can use these questions to develop your editorial calendar!
Using Questions on an Ongoing Basis
Once you’re done with those 10 questions, write down 10 more and repeat the process. In fact, every time that you get a new question that you haven’t addressed yet, make a note of it so that you can blog about it later.
One small technique that has worked for me is to use the answers that I send in an email as the basis for a new blog post. For example, if someone asks me a question in an email, I’ll send my response to them by email. However, I will then copy my response into a blog post. With a bit of editing and fleshing out the response, it doesn’t take long to have a new blog post ready to go.
The best part about this is that you’re not pulling topics out of thin air just because they’re of interest to you. That’s fine if you’re maintaining a personal blog about your hobbies. However, if blogging is part of your B2B sales process, then it’s better to make sure that your blog is helping you to meet your business goals; for B2B service providers, that means that it has to be helping your clients.