4 Tips for Choosing the Topic for Your Next Blog Post
- Anna Johansson
- August 18, 2017
Running a blog for your company is challenging. In addition to dealing with the big-picture responsibilities, you have to come up with new ideas on a regular basis – sometimes five or more times a week. But how can you continue producing fresh content over and over again?
Topic Selection Matters More Than You Know
The topic you choose for a blog post matters for two primary reasons. On the technical side, search engine algorithms are made to reward long tail search terms that align with trending topics. So, the more you discuss a particular topic, the greater your chances of ranking high and getting added visibility in the search results.
On the branding side of things, topic selection matters because it communicates what your brand is about to your customers. The subjects you write on are what you’ll be most closely connected with in your audience’s mind.
Understanding the significance of topic selection, it’s time to be honest with yourself and consider if you’re taking it as seriously as you should. If you aren’t quite sure where to start, the following tips may provide some inspiration.
1. Do Keyword Research
One of the best ways to come up with fresh, relevant topic ideas is to perform some keyword research. Keyword research will tell you exactly what search terms people are using to find ideas related to your niche. It’ll also show you the search volume and competitions (at least in terms of the PPC keywords brands are paying for).
There are a number of different keyword research tools. Google’s Keyword Planner is by far the most popular. Not only does it boast the best data, but it’s also totally free. Other good options include Google Webmaster Tools, SpyFu, SEO Book Keyword List Generator, and HubSpot.
2. Think Evergreen
There’s a time and place for publishing newsy topics, but the value on time-sensitive subjects is extremely limited. Instead, it’s smart to develop evergreen content that will provide value for months and years to come.
This article from Our Organic Wedding is a great example of an evergreen topic that provides lasting value. It doesn’t matter what season it is, what style the bride likes, or even where the bride is located – the topic will always resonate. Compare that to this article from Fashionista, which is already dated (at least as it pertains to the title and context).
3. Run Social Media Polls
Want to know what your audience wants to read about? Why not ask them directly? A quick survey or poll on your social media account can help you figure out which topics your readers care most about. Then, based on these insights, you can develop topics that actually add value.
On a related note, it’s always a good idea to focus on articles that solve problems (as opposed to ones that simply inform). Actionable articles are much more clickable and share-worthy and tend to perform better in the search engines.
4. Have a Brainstorming Session
Are you a one-person show? In other words, are you the only one on your team coming up with blog topics? If so, now’s a good time to call in some backup for a little help. It’s easy for one person to run out of ideas, but it’s much harder for a room full of people to get stuck. Have a weekly brainstorming session where everyone throws out ideas and you record them on a word document or whiteboard. Then, when you think you’re out of ideas, you can turn to these ideas and analyze them against your keyword research.
Don’t Get Lazy
Continually coming up with fresh topics that resonate with your audience and align with your brand isn’t easy work. It takes time, effort, and a healthy amount of creative energy. You can’t get lazy, though. Your content marketing efforts hinge on topic selection. Use these tips to stay on track.
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