HOUSTON – June 9, 2012 - Business owners, musicians, and even great web content writers have been stumped by the question, “What should I blog about?” While some may chalk their consternation up to classic writer’s block, the truth is that blogging isn’t only about solid writing. Nor is it only concerned about being interesting, informative, entertaining, addressing relevant topics, or promoting your business in a tactful and engaging manner.
No. It’s much worse than that. It’s all those things put together! And that, my friends, is what befuddles the average would-be blogger.
You may have found yourself a passenger in the baffled blogger boat on more than one occasion. You already know it’s generally recommended that you blog once a week. You dutifully set aside an hour or two every Tuesday to pump a few paragraphs out of your cluttered, overworked brain. You sit there, fingers poised in anticipation over the keyboard, glazed eyes staring blankly at an empty white document, and…nothing happens.
“Maybe I’m just not the blogging type,” you shrug. Don’t give up so easily!
Blogging is a fantastic way to connect with prospective clients, keep current customers and fans engaged, build a readership, promote your business, and maintain an online community of people with congruent interests.
Hopefully, the following will boost your inner writer ego and inspire that burgeoning blogger brain. Here, we’ve put together a list of useful tips, tricks, techniques, and ideas that will hopefully have you clacking away like a pro in no time.
10 Blogs You Can Write Right Now
10. Write a “How To” Tutorial or Offer Good Advise
Tutorials and good advice make excellent blog fodder. Plus, writing columns in the advice arena turns your blog into an informational resource that readers will reference and refer friends to as well.
Things to write about include something you recently accomplished that not everybody knows how to do? Perhaps you’ve written a press release, quilted a baby blanket, installed a kitchen sink, or used a graphic design program to add a drop shadow behind the logo on your company website.
Maybe you’re a well of great advise about eating healthy, gardening, baking, or home remedies for common ailments.
Whatever you did, whatever you do, no matter how commonplace it may seem to you, somebody out there wants to know how to do it too. Write out simple step-by-step instructions, and consider using photos or computer screen captures to visually demonstrate each point.
9. Document an Experience
Sharing an experience allows your readers to relate to you in a more personal way. It’s also a great way to highlight a service your company provides.
What’s something you or your company did recently, that would make a good blog? Did you go on a business retreat, volunteer at a homeless shelter, deliver lifesaving equipment to a hospital, or attend a big conference or seminar?
Write about it! Where did you go? Who did you see? What did you learn? The title could be as simple as “What I Learned at Ariel Hyatt’s Publicity & PR Workshop in NYC,” or “Remodeling the Kitchen at St. John’s Hospital.”
Using the names of people, places, businesses, and charities in your blog posts - particularly in the titles - will boost your search engine response.
8. Profile an Employee
This is an awesome way to give a human face to your company, and pat a deserving employee on the back. Whether the blog consists simply of a short bio and a photo, or documents some notable achievement - like getting a promotion, speaking at a conference, or showcasing a product at a convention - these sorts of blogs are always positive, encouraging to your personnel, and present your business as a friendly and supportive workplace.
7. Profile a Person or Company You’ve Worked With
If you’ve recently collaborated with another professional or business on a project, use your blog to document your experience and talk about what that person or company does.
Make it positive.
In doing so you not only pay a business contact a nice compliment, but you also present yourself as a friendly and professional person who is beneficial to work with. And you never know - somebody might even return the favor someday!
6. Document a Project and Highlight a Client
Every business has clients, and making a client feel special is always a good move. Let’s say you designed a new website for a restaurant, installed a new sound system at a local church, or printed twenty huge vinyl banners to promote an upcoming music festival. This is your opportunity to make a client feel appreciated, and make your business look great to prospective clients all at the same time.
Use your blog to write about your services to your client, and post pictures whenever possible. Screen captures and project photos will make your blog come alive. Before-and-after images are particularly nice to have. But if you don’t have those, a nice graphic of their company logo, or a photo copied off their website will do very nicely.
Say you’re a website designer and you have a business contact who writes website copy. You work together quite nicely. Maybe you’re an interior decorator and you’ve shared projects with a gifted construction contractor. Or perhaps your business supplies printing materials, and one of your clients offers printing services.
Consider swapping blogs one week. You can write a spiffy little blurb about your specialty for their blog, and they can share their own expertise in yours. Not only does this get your company’s links and logo posted on another business’ site, but it also cross-pollinates your own readership.
Now their readers know about you, and your readers know about them. Even if there’s some friendly business competition between you and your blog-swapping partner, this technique is super effective for building a readership that’s actively interested in your field.
4. Showcase a Special Deal or Upcoming Event
Write about an upcoming sale, film debut, company anniversary party, or the unveiling of a new product or service package. Maybe you’ll be hosting an open house, moving to a new location, or redesigning your website. Whatever the occasion, use your blog to give people the heads up so they’ve got time to plan ahead and spread the word. Don’t forget to include dates, times, locations, and any other relevant information.
If your event is happening at a big name venue, include that in the title so you get extra hits from Google and other search engines. Turn your blog into a friendly invitation to your readers, and encourage them to feel like they’re in on a really sweet deal.
After all, they’re your VIPs.
3. Milk the Holidays for Everything You Can Imagine
Father’s day is just around the bend. Maybe your brand has nothing whatever to do with dads - or does it? Consider profiling dads who work at your company, or asking a staff member to write a sentimental piece about his dad and how he’s inspired by him. Not everything in your blog has to be business related.
In fact, the more human, genuine, and friendly your blog, the more devoted and engaged your readership will be.
2. Respond to Another Blogger or Journalist
Did someone recently publish something that made you think? Did an article in the morning paper make you feel angry, motivated, or inspire new ideas? Feel free to share. While it’s not always the best policy to contradict another writer, sometimes it needs to be done. And of course, if you feel you can add to, expound upon, or simply highly recommend a particular blog, article, or news column, that’s a wonderful way to establish camaraderie with your fellow bloggers and journalists who might write about your business in the future.
Make sure you link back to the original piece, so your readers understand what you’re responding to. Also send the author a nice little note, so they know you’re sending them hits. Don’t assume they’ll find out on their own.
1. Address a Social or Political Issue You Care About
Have you ever worried about those homeless people you see under the overpass every time you drive to work? Are you big on green energy, helping high-risk kids, or running in marathons to raise funds for breast cancer research? Write about it. Talk about the bike ride you and your coworkers went on to raise funds for LiveStrong.
Tell your readers why you think it’s so important that pregnant teenage girls get counseling, education, and healthcare. Discuss your recent decision to adopt a highway and keep the road outside your facility litter free.
Recount the fun you had collecting donations of cat litter, dog food, and pet toys for a local no-kill animal shelter. These stories tug at people’s hearts, promote a great cause, and present you and your company as compassionate and community oriented all at the same time.
Can it get much better than that?
We hope you have found this article inspiring, and that your blogger’s block has already melted away into an ocean of bountiful ideas for what to write about next.
Never forget that if you have multiple ideas for blog topics, it’s a good idea to write them down so you don’t find yourself staring at that blank screen again anytime soon. Once you get those blogs penned and posted, please share a link in the comments section below so that we, too, can read our reader’s writings.
Coming Soon to SeeTalkGrow: How to incorporate SEO and Google Keywords into your blog posts.
About Jennifer Grassman:
Singer, songwriter and pianist, Jennifer Grassman is an award-winning recording artist and founder of SeeTalkGrow, a 100% online music, film, technology, and communications conference. Subscribe by RSS feed and read more at www.JenniferGrassman.com or www.SeeTalkGrow.com. Follow Jennifer in this column and at her music column, The Business of Being Diva here in Washington Times Communities. Also keep in touch via @JGrassman, @SeeTalkGrow, and likeFacebook.com/JenniferGrassmanMusic and Facebook.com/SeeTalkGrow.
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