How To Anticipate What Your Blog Readers Want From You Next

This is a guest post by Nathalie Lussier.

“You’re a mind reader! You always seem to know exactly what I need at the right time.” That’s what I hear from my blog readers on a consistent basis.


Photo Credit: Tom Giebel

So what’s my secret? Am I really a psychic when it comes to blogging topics or video training tutorials, or do I just know a couple of different ways to tap into what my audience needs? Well I might fall on the woo-woo side, but I do think that my sleuthing skills have a lot to do with writing the right content for my readers.

Here are my top 7 tricks for writing content that will have your blog readers kissing your feet and thanking you for.

1. Be A Fly On The Wall Where Your Audience Hangs Out

My favorite place to get content ideas is Facebook, and that’s because the majority of my audience hangs out there in Facebook groups. If you’re just starting out and you don’t really know who your people are, do a search for your topic on Facebook.

There are tons of open groups, as well as some more niche topic groups that you might need an invitation for. It’s worth scouting out, because you’ll be able to notice trends in the types of questions people ask.

You can also look at web forums and other online gathering places to see what topics seem confusing for people, so you can demystify them for your audience. The side benefit here is that when you do write a great piece that answers their questions, you can post about it and get some new fans in the process.

2. Take Your Customer and Client Questions Into Your Blog Posts (With Permission)

If you offer any type of consulting or open office hours as part of your business, getting direct questions from your clients is hands down the best. Sometimes people in a forum don’t feel comfortable asking certain questions. But when someone is speaking to you one on one, they’re a lot more likely to open up about what they really need help with.

Use these questions and situations in your content, and you’ll be helping a lot more than just your paying clients. In fact, you’ll be convincing non-clients that they need to hire you, because you’re speaking directly about what they’re going through too.

3. Mine The Google Data For Blog Post Ideas

Digging into the data is another great way to find out what people need from your blog. This means doing a little keyword research on Google’s free Keyword tool, to see what topics are hot. You can also look at Google Trends, and see if a particular niche is on the rise or fall.

Also be sure to look inside your Google Analytics account for the keywords people are using to find your site. They might be asking really specific questions that you sort of cover on your blog, but now you know exactly what they’re looking for and how they’re phrasing it.

4. Search Twitter for Questions About Your Topic

If your audience is tech savvy enough to be on Twitter, then you’ve got another source of great content inspiration. Search on Twitter for people using keywords or hashtags related to your topic, and look for patterns.

You might find there are some commonalities that you could address on your blog, and solve a bunch of different people’s issues all in one shot.

5. Ask Your Audience to Submit Questions

Want a really simple solution to coming up with awesome blog post ideas? Ask your existing readers to submit questions directly. Kikolani does this really well, with a form that asks what topics you’d like to learn more about.

Encourage people to ask you questions, and let them know that you’ll be blogging the answers. This way they know it’s okay to ask, and that they probably shouldn’t get too specific into their life’s details so that you don’t post their life history on your blog.

6. Write About What You Wish You Knew Then…

Sometimes the best blog post idea doesn’t come from an outside source, but it comes from deep down inside you. These are the posts that come to you when you’re working out, or taking a shower, and they just need to be written.

These are the blog posts that you wish you would have read when you were just starting out. These blog posts tend to have a bigger take away, and people can relate to you when you share your story. This also gives you a chance to talk about your struggles, and to show that you’re just a human being like your readers.

Now that you know how to anticipate what your blog readers are looking to learn from you, it’s time to take action. Pick one of these tips and commit to applying it to your next blog post. Soon you’ll have more ideas than you can shake a blog at.

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  1. says

    The best way of knowing what your audience wants? Ask them. Directly! Use your post to ask a direct question as to what your audience would like to see from you next, or if there’s something specific that they would like to see from you. Use polls if you want to. From the article, I particularly like the first point. If there are places where people from your industry/niche tend to hang out (Twitter, Reddit, etc), it would be a good idea to visit those places and be a part of the community and conversations there as much as you can.
    Mike Dawson just posted How to Optimize Your Landing Page for Conversions

  2. says

    Hi Nathalie,

    Power tips here!

    Become an effective listener. Gold is being spread around each day on the internet, on chat rooms, social networks, and anywhere where your readers hang out.

    Tune into problems by listening. Create solutions to those problems with your posts.

    Just this morning – Vietnam time 😉 – I was running a live training webinar for a new member of my team.

    He mentioned tweaking his autoresponder series. I went over some basics during the training but decided to flesh out a few simple, basic tips to create effective autoresponders.

    Of course, that’s today’s blog post…published 10 minutes ago 😉

    The problems, hopes, dreams and concerns are always there. We need only quiet down, listen, tune in, process the information and tailor the solution to our reader’s issues.


    Ryan Biddulph just posted Home Based Business Training – 6 Tips to Write Effective Autoresponder Emails

  3. says

    Number three is the one I really love to dig in to.

    I don’t think many people either understand or have the desire to really explore the various tools Google provides. But if you do a bit of research, it’s amazing the types of un-served niches you can find with keywords and the up and coming topics you can locate with trends.

    On my other websites it really is the foundation of what I do. Research first to build a solid foundation, and then create relevant and highly useful content from there.
    Garrett just posted Forex Trading Recap: 29 Aug 2012 +60 Pips

  4. says

    Thanks for sharing your handful of great ideas for keeping one’s fingers on the pulse of their market, Nathalie.

    Not only good for searching out high-value ideas for blog readers, but also useful for just good old fashioned market research and product creation ideas, too.

    I especially liked your suggestion to “write about what you wish you knew then” which I took as a reminder… It’s too easy to forget how the concepts we take for granted now are vital questions to those seeking out our knowledge!
    Jim Zboran just posted Enter the Entrepreneur

  5. says

    Great advice Nathalie,

    I’ve been using most of these options, but I’ll go see if I can find some relevant Facebook groups to hang out in as well.

    I’ve found one thing that beats all other methods regarding the “ask your audience to submit questions”. And that’s to ask in your email auto responder series that goes out to your email list. That way you’ll get fresh input on a regular basis without having to do anything once it’s setup.
    Tune just posted Namecheap Coupon September 2012

  6. says

    Hey Nathalie,
    This post is just great with an unique post that you have highlighted. Getting anticipation from your readers about what your next post would be is also a great thing for the content writers as well as for the readers. I like the first and second point that you shared in your post. Well, I think the same that interacting with your readers by giving them suggestion and replying them on their comments would be the best idea to read their mind further. Secondly, joining the communities that your commentators have joined is also a good idea for better anticipation. Thanks for the share!!

  7. says

    Hi Nathalie

    To know what my readers want i generally ask some question on my Facebook fan page or do a Google+ hangout with them. I also send some questionnaire asking about what they like & didn’t like in my blog and believe it really works well for me.

    Sometime during the comment conversation i got some idea about what they like & didn’t like on my blog post & what they want next from me.
    Tauseef Alam just posted Kindle Fire 2 Price, Release Date, Specs, Rumors & News

  8. says

    Years ago, a famous talk show host was talking with his guest; a comic. First, they talked about the time they actually worked. It was less than 10 hours a week. But then, they segued into another element of their jobs: they were constantly at work, always looking for new material!

    The same is true of a blogger.

    One can write the best quality, the best written post, and if it doesn’t speak to the needs of the readers/visitors, it is worthless.

    You gave several wonderful examples of how people can constantly write about topics that interest their readers. It all boils down to this: watch for repeating questions wherever you go.

    The threads in the Warrior Forum tend to repeat themselves. Thus, I have content for future posts.

    Thanks for giving me several other ways that I can find out what people want and write about it.
    David Sneen just posted Would You Pursue $1000?…if the Odds Were Against You?

  9. says

    These are really valuable tips. Some other ideas are to look up your topic on questions-oriented sites (such as Yahoo answers for example) and to look at what people type to find your blog using Google anaytics or other website analytics tool. Maybe people are visiting your sites in hope of a specific type of content that you have not yet created?
    Thanks for this interesting blog post.
    Saskia Bader just posted Be creative and try out other types of content