Series 4, Article 49
So, we’ve all heard over and over again that CONTENT on your website or blog is the most important way to attract attention from the search engines. And having engaging, interesting, new content on a regular basis is imperative.
Your content needs to be applicable to your readers and your business. But what happens when you feel you’ve run out of interesting ideas to write about? Even the best of the bloggers hit this wall sometimes. Coming up with content that will connect with your audience, rank well with the search engines, and therefore make an impact on your business with traffic, revenue and brand building, takes time and expertise. You can do it yourself, or hire a content writer, but one way or the other you must have constant new content on your website or blog in order to rank high with the search engines.
Over the years of writing weekly magazine articles for Snippetz, I have come up with a list of ways I prod myself to come up with good topic ideas for content.
- Read everything you can find on topics surrounding your business.
No matter what your business, there is always more to learn, a lot to read, and tons of information to assimilate. All of this current information that you read will help you generate great topic ideas for your content. Be careful not to plagiarize, but quoting someone and stating the source (even linking to the original article) is great for your search engine ranking. Search the web for topics that are hot that concern your business. Blogs are the best place to find the most current hot topics. Read other’s opinions on those topics and then write your own twist on the subject. Facebook groups and online magazines are also great places to find hot topics.
- Create lists.
People love lists. “10 Ways to…..”, “The 5 best….”, “20 Kind of….” Lists sum up content without requiring your readers to read paragraphs. People love creative writing, but love precise lists even more.
- Create “How to….” articles.
A fun way to write this type of article is to research other “How to…” articles on a subject that relates to your business. Then take the 3 to 5 best “How to…” articles, make a compiled list of “How to…” steps, add all your own knowledge to the content, reword completely any ideas you pull from the sample articles, and most importantly delete all the information for which you disagree. Then rearrange the steps to be precisely accurate. Read over your new “How to…” content and picture yourself doing everything step by step. Another way to make sure your “How to…” article is accurate is to picture yourself teaching someone.
Acting like you are teaching is the best way to learn something. “While we teach, we learn,” said the Roman philosopher Seneca. This type of content is best with a lot of images.
- Get Controversial and use your Personal Experience.
Theory, hypothesis, speculation, assumption, philosophy, ideology…. These are fun to read because it gives us a new slant, a different perspective on ideas we thought were unshakable. Being completely controversial is risky, but explaining a different viewpoint and breaking the rules is engaging and fun.