Your Secret to Having Infinite Blog Topics to Write About
You already know how to start a successful blog for a business. Maybe you've created several over the years for clients.
You did your research. You learned what works. It's paying off.
Now comes the hard part -- maintaining a blog long term.
In order to obtain and maintain rank in search engines, you have to deliver consistent, high-quality content.
On top of that, struggling to generate blog topics to write about will stress you out.
All that hard work on SEO begins to melt.
The longer you wait, the harder it is to retake your proper place. But forcing it doesn't make great content.
Whoever thought coming up with endless blog topics to write about an industry you know inside and out would be so hard?
Let's explore how to get those ideas flowing and turn your ideas into endless possibilities.
Finding Blog Topics to Write About: Why It's Complicated
It's a common question. I get it all the time from my audience on Quora. I hear it from small business owners, professional bloggers and marketing professionals alike.
"Leigh, how do I find more blog topics to write about? I'm feeling inspirationally drained and uninspired. I'm losing followers and my rank is slipping."
I understand the sentiment. But you know and I know there's more to it than just coming up with blog topics to write about.
You could just use some random topic generator if that were the goal. You've can have an amateur writer making .03/word pitch you some random ideas.
You don't just want blog topics to write about.
You need to get a return on your investment.
It's important to get this out in the open so that searching for blog topics to write about doesn't lead you down a rabbit hole into the unpredictable world of Alice's Wonderland.
You can't afford to waste your time writing about topics people don't care about. It wouldn't make sense to pay someone on staff to write blog articles that don't appeal to your target audience.
Ultimately, the key to a successful blog is this. The topics you create should always help you meet KPIs and objectives like:
Increase brand awareness among your target audience
Encourage people to follow, sign up and come back
Engage the customers you already have
Increase customer lifetime value
Turn customers into promoters (great reviews, more sharing, etc.)
You should be able to set some SMART goals and then measure using tools like Google Analytics (Marketing Platform).
When you do, you begin to see the phenomenal returns a business can get through applying content marketing strategies. Increased revenues. Reduced marketing costs. Lower customer management costs because people find more of what they're looking for online.
These techniques will have you rolling in highly shareable topics that hit their objectives out of the ballpark. You'll be as happy as this guy.
Wait... for... it....
Create a Topic Web
A Topic Web helps you create a visual representation of how topics relate to each other.
Map out your existing articles. See topics you haven't fully covered on your blog. Where are the holes in your infrastructure?
Or use it to start a new series of topics from scratch.
It starts with a main topic. Then the next tier becomes a new set of topics. As you move out from the center each level is closely related to the level beneath it. Topics are getting narrower and drilling down to actionable steps as the tiers move outward.
Not only does using a topic web mean you can generate topics out exponentially to infinity if you so choose. It makes for a more organized blog.
Your target audience will appreciate how easily they can consume it. You'll keep them coming back.
Step-By-Step Example of a Topic Web
Let's say you help people manage their Google AdWords campaigns.
What's a very general topic to write about?
How Can Google AdWords Help My Business? That's a good start.
There's your centerpiece. We could start with "What is Google AdWords?" But that would depend on just how little your target knows.
How Can Google AdWords Help My Business? That's the first piece of content to write. But before you start writing, let's get at least a couple tiers on this web laid out.
What is one tier out from your centerpiece?
What Are the Benefits of Google Adwords?
How Do I Get the Right ROI on Google AdWords?
What Do AdWords Ads Cost?
Is Google AdWords Really Worth it?
You'll ideally have 5-7 topics to writer in that first tier But don't limit yourself if you have more. Notice how these topics are still fairly general. But they allow you to introduce someone to AdWords from the various aspects of the topic.
Now, let's move to the 2nd tier by breaking down How Do I Get the Right ROI on Google AdWords? into blog topics to write about.
Those may be:
The Best Bidding Strategies for Google AdWords
How to Do Keyword Research for Google Adwords
What Is an Adwords Quality Score?
5 Silly Mistakes Business Make When Using AdWords
These 5 Adwords Success Stories Made Us Cheer
How to Create Effective Ads for AdWords?
What's a Landing Page & Why Do I Need One for AdWords?
Work out from: What Is an AdWords Quality Score?
7 Proven Strategies to Raise Your AdWords Quality Score
How Does a Poor Quality Score Impact My Ad Spend?
These 6 Tools Will help You Raise Your Quality Score
Highlight each tool mentioned in: These 6 Tools Will help You Raise Your Quality Score
Some topics may have more tiers coming off of them than others. You don't have to force it if you can only get a handful around tier 5 or 6. When a web feels exhausted, move onto a new centerpiece and work out again.
If you publish 4 pieces of blog content a month, one well-thought-out web can easily last you 6 months or more. If that's too much on one general topic, create multiple webs to work off as you build out your publishing schedule.
Create one a month for each of 4 webs.
Try not to get confused or overwhelmed if topics seem to overlap or be out of order. Organize them as best you can and get to creating exceptional content.
Each tier builds of the last. It creates a very natural structure on which to create internal links and display related content.
We just created an educational web of content that's very relevant to your target audience. This relevance, and the ease with which they can move to the next piece of content, will have people clicking across content and consuming more of it.
As they do, take this opportunity to capture leads or apply other strategies that take them further into the content marketing funnel.
Gently lead people toward using your services, knowing you apply the proven strategies you discuss.
Build Off KeyWord Research
I always recommend that you do some thorough keyword research before you start choosing topics. This helps you understand where to start creating content from your web.
Some of these topics in the topic web will be worth creating massive long form content or they may need to be broken down more.
Others can be covered in 500 words or so. They complement your blog. But they're not worth a huge investment of time or money. That's how to get the best ROI on a blog.
Keywords will be one major factor that helps you determine this. The other will be covered in the following section: Build Off Your Winners
How to Build Off Keywords
On the free side of things, I like Moz Keyword Explorer. But they're cut you off to a certain number of queries per month. Use them wisely.
AdWords Keyword Planner is okay. But it's not giving you the whole picture. If your focus is SEO rather than running ads, you need a tool based on search queries not how much people are bidding on AdWords.
Enter a 2-3 word phrase that you think people will search for. Take a look at:
How many monthly visitors that phrase gets
How competitive it is
The Percentage of Organic Traffic
Other Related keywords (expand the suggestions and sort by volume.
Keyword strategies can vary depending on:
How visible your site is already
How competitive your industry is
Type of Business (eComm, Local, Small, Medium,, etc)
But as a general rule, you're looking for keywords that are:
Low Competition or a competition level you can handle
Decent Traffic (What's decent really varies by business type)
Relevant to your audience (If you sell blog articles, then "article writing jobs" isn't relevant). That's not your audience.
3-6 words long. The longer the better if it's getting good traffic
If you're not very competitive in search results at the moment, be sure you use a combination of low, medium and high keywords. The low ones will help you get a foothold. As you do, you can start moving up the ranks for more competitive words.
Take the time to really review the report. Start categorizing words according the words. Consider what topics you can build off these words.
Using a keyword planner, you can find hundreds of words to target. Couple that with a topic web and you have an infinite supply of blog topics to write about.
Do a Competitor Analysis
You've likely done an over-arching competitor analysis. It's essential to knowing what you're up against and how to overtake the competition.
Doing a mini one from time to time can help you both stay competitive with your content marketing strategies and develop new blog topics to write about.
Your competitors in this instance aren't the business down the street. They may not even be selling anything that you do.
In search engines, your competitors are the websites that are holding those top 10 spots in the search results where you want to be. They'll make you work for it to get there. This quick competitor analysis method will help you get there.
To build content that can rank in search engines, you need to know what your content is up against.
I'll walk you through the way to do them manually for free. But note that you can also use paid tools like Ahrefs and SemRush to do it faster.
They'll help you go more in- depth and give you insight into what you have to do you overtake the competition.
How to Do a Competitor Analysis for Blog Topics to Write About
First, build a spreadsheet in excel. It will just make it easier to see your results laid out.
Next, I recommend that you use the Chrome browser so you can download the Free Mozbar extension. This will tell you how competitive your competitors are.
If you don't have Chrome browser, you can still use the free Moz tools on their website. But they will cut you off at a certain number of searches per month.
Use them wisely.
Let's choose a keyword around which you want to build your content. Enter that word into a query.
See who the top 10 competitors are.
On the spreadsheet, note their:
Topic of the page
Type of content (Video, Blog, Product page, etc)
These will give you insight into what topics are getting the best search results. Some may not apply directly to what you do. Others will be exact blog topics you should cover to rank for this keyword.
But you'll end up with many more than 10 topics to cover. Build off of these topics and find new keywords to target to expand your content portfolio.
In addition to grabbing some blog topics to write about, note some other information while you're here.
This information will help you create better content on the topics you choose. It shows you what you have to overcome to rise in the search results.
This info includes.
DA - Domain Authority ... Mozbar will tell you this.
PA - Page Authority... refer to Mozbar.
Number of words on the page
Other keywords they're targeting . You can determine this for free by using a keyword density checker or expanding Mozbar to see their list of keywords for the page.
How many do follow links to the page ...refer to Mozbar
Great work. You've got an amazing list of blog topics to write about now. But let's not overlook a very critical piece of the puzzle.
Build Off Your Winners
Part of your blog topic generation strategy should always be knowing your winners and producing more content like it. Some in content marketing call your winners, Unicorns, because they are so mythical in nature.
But I assure you, they do exist. With proper topics generation, creation and distribution strategies, you'll create many, many of them.
It's not possible to create only unicorns. You're going to generate some stubborn mules that don't want to do anything for you.
Even top brands don't create all winners.
Run an efficient content marketing ship that doesn't spend too much time or money on stubborn mules. Identify those unicorns through analytics. Create more of them.
What Is a Winner?
A winning piece of content meets the objectives that you set for it. It can't be compared to content that had different objectives. that's an apples and oranges scenario.
Establish a clear objective for each piece of content. Measure how it performed. You might choose to measure a piece of content by:
Number of Important Interactions on On Social Media (sharing, comments, clicking)
How much traffic the piece
Low Bounce rate (When someone clicks on another piece of content)
Long dwell time (People stay on the page because they like the content)
How many leads were generated from that piece of content
How many people purchased something after that piece of content
Rank for its keyword ( measured at 6-12 months)
All of these objectives and others work together to meet your broader goals like increasing revenue, reducing churn, growing a business.
Setting up sales funnels in Google Analytics is a great way to easily track content performance for free. You can use paid tools to take analysis further.
Once you've established your winners, analyze them. Topic is a strong indicator of success. But it may be more than that.
Use of Keywords
How you promoted it
Anything else that appears relevant
Make note of these winning elements and apply it more going forward.
Finding Blog Topics to Write About
Finding blog topics to write about just got a whole lot easier. These topic-generation strategies are key to a successful blog today. They're key to seeing your blog rise in the ranks to generate bountiful, targeted online traffic through search engines.
Use a topic web. Build off keywords. Build off your winners. As you do, your ROI goes up, up, up.
Are you struggling to maintain your business blog? Is coming up with topics and writing for your clients draining your creativity? It's time to get that blog back on track and getting results. I can help. Contact me to schedule a quick consultation.