10 Minute Task: How to Find Blog Topics Your Customers Actually Want to Read

Your customers get bored. Easily.

It’s an inconvenient truth (not you, Al Gore) and it costs businesses money.

So what can you do?

A great blog has the ability to transform a website and help companies to meet their objectives in a phenomenal way. But let’s face it: blogging can also sometimes feel like a chore. Especially if you aren’t seeing results.

Coming up with new and exciting ways to keep your audience’s attention isn’t an easy task. And every copywriter has faced the dreaded task of staring at an empty word document and hoping the world would swallow them whole.

So, if you’re stuck for ideas to create blog content that your customers actually want - then have a look at these tools beforehand. It’ll only take 10 minutes.

And we promise you won’t have that sinking feeling again.


1. Quicksprout

To go forwards, sometimes you need to go backwards. So prepare to go on a whirlwind journey through time and space with Quicksprout.

Using your Google Analytics data, the Quicksprout tool will quickly and efficiently tell you which pieces of your content have been the most successful in the past.

You can see exactly how many views the blog has had, including where the visitors came from and how long they stayed on your page.

So, when it comes to picking your next content topic, you’ll be able to base your choices based on historic success - not guesswork.

Get yourself a big spreadsheet document and start creating lists. Keep a record of which topics, titles, and formats have attracted the most attention. Hopefully, you’ll start to notice a pattern and then you can compare this data over time and create blogs that you know audiences want.


2. Buzzsumo

This is another great free tool for helping to pick blog topics that you know customers already like.

Type any topic, company, or website into Buzzsumo and it’ll come up with a summary of which content pieces have performed best according to social media. Everything is divided up into platform (Twitter, Google+, Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn) and ranked according to what is most popular. It’s simple and ever-so useful.

Of course, Buzzsumo is great for assessing your company’s strengths and weaknesses when it comes to tweeting. You can also check out your competitors too.  But it’s also an excellent tool for doing some in-depth customer research.

Here is an example. Let’s say my target audience is salespeople. I already know that salespeople enjoy sharing content from publications like Entrepreneur and Inc. So, I could use Buzzsumo to research these companies and discover content topics that I know my customers are likely to have already shared.

It’s pretty obvious you don’t want to copy these topics verbatim. Then you wouldn’t be adding anything new to the discussion. But this is a great starting point for coming up with new ideas and finding topics you might never have considered.


3. LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the social media platform par excellence for making important business connections and snooping on ex-colleagues and schoolmates without a hint of guilt.

However, it’s also a treasure trove for discovering new content ideas - if you only know where to look.

Ask yourself the following question: who would be your ideal client? (Don’t say Coca-Cola…)

Once you’ve established that one business that rocks your boat, look them up on LinkedIn. Find out who works there and who makes the key decisions. Once you’ve narrowed that down, you can connect with them and keep track of what type of content they like to share.

Not only will you gain a good idea about which themes appear most often, but you’ll also gauge the formats they love (blog, infographic, video etc) and their favourite publications.

Then you can use Buzzsumo again to come up with more great content ideas based on these results. We recommend using a spreadsheet to keep track of these individuals, otherwise it could get a bit crazy.

And no it’s not creepy. It’s science!

(Okay, it’s not really science but it’s for important business purposes. Yeah.)


Finding a great blog topic in 10 minutes

For any business out there that blogs every week, come rain or shine, we salute you. You’re already doing more than millions of others.

But every organisation reaches a certain point when it’s not simply enough to write great content. They also want to see a return on investment; undeniable proof that their content marketing strategy is delivering results.

This means coming up with topics that attracts and maintains your customer’s attention.

So, spend 10 minutes every week using tools like Quicksprout and Buzzsumo to create content with a proven track record of success. Make Excel your new best friend and get data-savvy, then you’ll really start to see your blogging efforts working with you - not against you.

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