We know that, for your site to get to the top of the search rankings, you’re going to need to attract links – and lots of them.

One of the best ways of attracting links is by creating fantastic content. Which, almost certainly means lots of content, lots of promotion, and lots of ideas. In other words, the three Ps of blogging success.

  • Post regularly
  • Post great content
  • Promote it

But, before you get anywhere near one of those Ps, you’ll want some great ideas that will appeal to your audience – and often that’s no easy feat.

So, to get you started, here are 10 sure-fire content ideas for your blog.

1. Answer your customers’ questions

The aim of your marketing is to get customers to know, like and trust you. A great way of doing that is to answer customers’ questions.

Chances are that if one customer asks you a question, many more will have the same query.

You can find questions from your email inbox, with your customer service team, by asking your customers, or by using the question filter in Wordtracker’s Keywords tool.

2. Write your company’s history

Writing about your company’s history can be a great way of inspiring employees and a great way of attracting links, too.

The way that you package your brand’s story, like this well designed ‘About us’ page, here

… or a really well told story about how your company was founded, and why, will naturally attract attention and links for many months to come.

3. Write a case study

Story-telling is an innate part of being human. Stories help us organize information, convey emotions and build community.

You can bring your products to life by showing how real people use them – and the benefits they bring.

Case studies also provide social proof that other people are using your products, hence making them an even more attractive commodity to prospects.

4. Admit your mistakes

Making mistakes is an inevitable part of running a business.

Admitting to your mistakes and poor choices takes honesty and bravery.

By admitting to yours, you’ll appear more accessible, more likeable.

By doing so, you’re subtly demonstrating your experience and expertise.

Even the biggest brands are capable of admitting their misdemeanours, like Forbes for example:

5. Build a Top 100 list.

Readers respond well to lists. The structure and easy to follow nature of lists are what appears to make them so popular.

So, if you can create lists that are relevant to your audience, they’re likely to attract traffic and links.

A list of 101 ideas is fantastic.

You could write about 10 easy ways to solve a problem.

Or expose the top 10 myths in your industry.

You could create a list of experts in your field.This can be a great way of introducing yourself to opinion-formers in your industry. Mild flattery rarely causes harm, and links from these authority sites are particularly valuable.

An easy way to do this is to create a useful Circle of experts on Google+ – and share it.

To get you started, you’ll find lots of shared Circles at bit.ly/shared-circles.

6. Interview an expert

Once you’ve introduced yourself, why not conduct an interview?

Nowadays, you can easily record a Skype chat, or, simply email over a list of questions.

Here’s an approach you could take:

●     Phone or email the person in question with a polite invitation.

●     Explain your website or blog so they can judge whether to grant the interview.

●     Briefly explain who your audience is and why you want the interview.

●     Once the interview’s live on your site, encourage the interviewee to blog and Tweet about it.

7. Report on an event

Every year, companies spend thousands of marketing pounds sending their employees to exhibitions, seminars and training courses.

Make the most of your marketing spend by turning an event experience into interesting web copy.

It’s easy to Tweet relevant tips during the event, then at the end of the day, collate the tips into an article.

Promote the article to everyone at the event and I guarantee you’ll get good publicity.

Just like Receptional did with our recent article, 198 tips from BrightonSEO.

8. Create a jargon buster

It’s important to speak in a language your site’s visitors understand. Yet many industries are beset with jargon that only established experts understand.

Write a jargon-busting article that helps industry newcomers to understand what’s going on.

It’s also a great excuse to use keyword rich phrases in your copy without confusing your audience, like this site:

9. Publish your own survey

We all love surveys.

Journalists love surveys because they contain original research and an easy story.

Readers love surveys that unveil something new and link builders love surveys because they can be a low-cost way of creating great content.

There are two approaches to surveys. First, you can comment on other peoples’ surveys. This saves you all the work of conducting your own.

Or, if your time and budget allows, conduct your own survey. It needn’t be a huge affair. For example, in this post, link builder Garrett French has surveyed 21 other link builders.

10. Make a video

The days when it was possible to release a simple video, see it go viral, and get watched by millions of people, are long gone.

But, videos now play a significant role in online marketing; whether they are product videos, about us videos, FAQs, or news-related.

Almost any of the content we’ve discussed so far could be produced as a video.

And we know that Google loves video content, which means it’s more likely to rank well in the search results.

And as with all your content, it’s worth making time to promote it to people in your industry, so you can attain those all important shares and links. So, the easiest way to do this is to:

●     Create and maintain lists of people who might be interested in your content.

●     Link to other blogs from your blog. Outbound links can be one of the cheapest forms of marketing. Savvy bloggers track who is linking to them, or at least, where their traffic comes from. So linking out is an easy way to start a relationship.

●     Creating outbound links makes your first contact so much easier, if you’re able to say: ‘Hi Mr Blogger, I really liked your recent post on widgets and I mentioned it in a recent post of my own.’ It shows a genuine interest in your community.

●     Comment on other blogs. Most of these comments will not provide much direct search engine value, but if your comments are useful, insightful, and relevant they can drive direct traffic. They also help make the other bloggers become aware of you, and they may start reading your blog and/or linking to it.

Too many people think of link building and SEOas an activity that’s separate from their marketing. But that thinking is likely to deliver poor results. All the ideas I’ve mentioned are things you should be doing as part of your marketing – even if you weren’t trying to attract links for SEO purposes.

I hope you’ve found that run-through useful. If you’ve questions, please let us know below:

 

Contact Receptional