Blogs have come a long way. They are no longer the “Dear Diary” of the Internet.

A blog is a strategic way to draw traffic to your website, prove credibility, build customer trust, and shorten the sales cycles.

It brings 55% more traffic to your company website; B2C companies generate 88% more leads per month; B2B companies generate 67% more leads per month just by having a high quality blog.

The best part? By sharing informative blog posts online for interested buyers or clients to read on their own time, you are inviting them to start the buying cycle on their own. Through quality blog content, your can position your company as an industry leader so visitors will be 60% through the buying cycle, ready to move toward the decision to buy, by the time they talk to a sales professional.

The goal is captivating your target audience. The blog’s content should be intriguing so people check back regularly. The topics should be based on your audience — what would they like to know? What would interest them?

Here are some tips on coming up with relevant and interesting blog post topics to increase sales:

1. JUMP ON TRENDS

There are lots of ways to find out the “hot” topic online. A great way to write a piece of content which will be read by many people is by knowing what people are searching for.

Google Trends – Tells you what people have been searching for online recently.
Twitter.com/Search – Gives you the worldwide trends in what people are tweeting.
Reddit.com – Shows you the people’s news (TM) stream.

All of these places show you the content that is popular at that moment. Spot the opportunity and jump on the trend.

2. LOOK AT COMPETITORS

See what other competitors are writing about. You can steal ideas and then write them better through your own voice.

3. READ. READ. READ.

Every opportunity you have, read. This will help spark your ideas. Check out relevant media publications, as well as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+ feeds. Really, anything can be your muse! Sign up for newsletters and stay tuned in to industry news.

4. POPULAR QUESTIONS

What are some of the most popular questions you get from your clients, customers, or even staff?!

Tips? Tricks? Just confused looks?

It is a good idea to write answers for these questions, but don’t just share generic information found online. Write about why YOU would recommend it. Make all the posts as specific and personable as possible.

5. IDEA GENERATORS

BuzzSumo is a great site that reveals content marketing trends. From seeing what works for other blogs you can take that information and put your own unique spin on it.

How it works is you enter a website domain and it’ll show you the most shared URLs. This allows you to see which of your competitors’ blog posts was most successful, or even analyze your own blog. You can also look at what articles are “Trending” or receiving the most shares across social media.

 

Now that you have an idea, what should you do?

Just start writing. Don’t let that white screen with its blinking cursor get to you. Just write and tweak later.

 

Here are some tips to keep in mind when writing blog posts:

1. PICK A CATCHY TITLE

When users are going through your blog they will pick what they want to read based on the title. In fact, 80% of people read the title, while only 20% read the entire post. Make it witty and inquisitive. People’s psychology enables them to search for answers they may not know. Instead of “Check out our new blog post,” write “How can an awesome blog increase sales?” or “10 Blogs Tricks to Increase Sales.”

2. INTERESTING INTRODUCTION

Start off with an intriguing introduction that grabs the reader’s attention. This is where clarity is important. If you lose the reader in the first few paragraphs — or even sentences — of the introduction, they will stop reading. You can do this in a number of ways: tell a story or a joke, be empathetic, or grip the reader with an interesting fact or statistic.

Then describe the purpose of the post and explain how it will address a problem the reader may be having. This will give the reader a reason to keep reading and give them a connection to how it will help them improve their lives.

3. VISUAL APPEARANCE

Content with a photo, infographic, or video increases engagement by 80%. This is an easy way to seize the reader’s attention.

To make it easy, create your own image with Canva. It’s a free online resource that allows you to make professional visuals like a graphic designer.

MOST IMPORTANTLY:

Be personable. Don’t be afraid to make your blog conversational.
Eliminate the marketing message because it will not connect to people. There’s too much of that out there on the Internet. Just have a call-to-action (CTA) at the end.
Make your blog your informational hub to answer all of the questions your prospects and clients ask.

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