12 Most Stimulating Small Business Blog Ideas
Having trouble thinking up topics to write about on your small business blog? Ideas can come at all hours of the day or night, but rarely can you summon them on demand. Making regular deposits in an idea bank can help, and you should always have a notebook on hand to capture those ideas before they fly out of your head. However, most business bloggers find themselves with writer’s block at some point in their careers. It’s frustrating, time-wasting, depressing, and just makes you want to tear your hair out.
When you find yourself staring out the window or reorganizing files just to avoid writing, here are 12 questions to ask yourself that will stimulate those creative neurons in your brain to start cranking out posts.
1. Most challenging customer question
What’s the most difficult customer question you’ve ever been asked?
Introduce the question at the start of your post and go on to explain why this was so challenging to address. Explain some of the issues that were involved and how you answered the question. If you’ve just been asked the question recently, use your new post to answer it and send a link to the answer in an email to the customer.
2. Product or service tips
What are 5 tips people can implement to use your product or service more effectively?
If you sell a product, it should be easy enough to list out a few tips for the best ways to use the product. If you offer a service, this can be a little more difficult. Try offering tips for the best ways to work with you or tips on how to pick out the most appropriate service provider for different customer needs. For example, if you offer website design services, give tips on what a customer should think about before interviewing a potential designer.
3. Top resources
What are the top 5 resources you use in your business that can make your customers’ and readers’ lives easier?
Everyone wants to know about ways they can reduce the stress in their lives, save time, or improve their performance. By talking about your own favorite tools and resources you are helping out your customers. At the same time, you are creating a connection with readers by showing them that you face some of the same challenges that they have. You then go on to build trust and respect by sharing how you overcame those challenges.
4. Industry changes
What’s the most significant change that’s occurred in your industry in the last X years?
By talking about important industry changes and trends, you both educate your readers and establish yourself as an expert in your field. It tells people that you have a history in the industry and that you stay on top of the latest developments. People seem to subconsciously attribute expertise to a writer who discusses statistics and trends. By writing about what’s been happening in your market, you can reap the benefits of educating yourself and your readers while raising your status in the eyes of everyone.
5. Reasons for success
What are the biggest factors that have contributed to your customers’ success?
While many business bloggers like to write about their own story of success, talking about your own customers can be far more interesting. It also shows that you’re in tune with your customers and are dedicated to helping them be successful. Use a customer case study to illustrate some of the factors that will help others. Talk about different ways that people can implement those factors themselves and how to overcome some of the challenges that may arise. Just be sure to get your customer’s permission first. They may even be able to write up most of the case study for you if you give them a list of questions.
6. Share creative ideas
What are the most creative ways your customers have used your product or service?
Stimulate your readers’ own creativity by sharing some of the ways people have used your products in the past. If possible, ask customers for pictures you can share. For example, if you sell a physical product, you can ask customers for images of that product being put to use. If you offer a service, such as life coaching, you could ask a customer to share creative ways they used to stick with the goals they set. If you do have pictures, remember that you can pin these to an idea board on Pinterest as well, creating links back to your post.
7. How to avoid mistakes
What are the biggest mistakes people make when they think about buying your product or service?
The fear of making a mistake is always a hook when people see it in the title of a post. You can write an article about what mistakes people have made in the past when shopping around for your type of product or service, along with how to avoid them. As an additional idea, you can write about the biggest mistakes people make when they use your product or service. For example, if you provide a consulting service, you can talk about the assumptions that people make that can seriously affect the success of a project.
8. Share your memories
What is your most memorable moment in your business?
Think back on moments in the history of your business that really stand out. This could be a big success, a massive failure, or simply a touching moment that made you laugh and cry. What did you learn from that moment? How can your own learnings help your readers in their businesses and lives?
9. Keyword research
What are the most common keyword phrases people search for in your industry?
You can’t go wrong by doing some solid keyword research to get topic ideas. There are many tools available for finding good keywords that people want information on. Examples include Wordtracker, Market Samurai, and the Google Adwords Keyword tool. Look for some of the longer phrases to get ideas for posts.
10. Popular posts
What are the 5 most popular posts on your site?
Look back at your analytics and see which posts get the most traffic on your site. Make a list of them and see if there’s a pattern. Then write a brief introduction to tell people what trend you’re seeing based on the popularity of certain posts. Why do you think these are the most popular? Give the links to each post with a brief sentence to tell what the post is about. Then write a short conclusion that ties them together in some way.
11. Who’s who in your industry
Who are the 3 top influencers in your industry?
Write a post that introduces the top 3 industry leaders and what’s special about each one. Why should your readers listen to them? What can they learn from each? Talk about what you have learned from them yourself and link to a significant article that each one has written. This gives you the added benefit of increasing your own visibility in the eyes of those experts.
12. Famous myths
What’s the biggest myth that people talk about in your market?
There isn’t a market out there that doesn’t have at least one myth associated with it. What’s one of the biggest ones in your industry? Why is it a myth and what’s the reality? Another way to approach this question is to talk about the biggest lies told in your industry and what the truth is. For example, in the coaching business there are many people that guarantee results. The truth is that no one can guarantee your success. It’s all in your own hands.
These 12 questions should give you some good fodder for energizing your business blogging. Add your own thought-provoking questions to your idea bank notebook and you should never be at a loss for what to write on your blog.
Help us all out. What ideas or questions can you add to the list?
Featured image courtesy of mskogly via Creative Commons.