This is a guest post by Chris Warden.
I can predict – with great accuracy – the steps that nearly every offline business owner tries when bringing their business online: set up a website, begin blogging, and sign up for Twitter and Facebook. Sound accurate? Let’s take a deeper look at the blog. The problem isn’t knowing you should be blogging, – it’s finding topics that are relevant to your niche that won’t bore your readers to death. “Words that Sell” (patent pending), if you will.
As important as it is to stay on topic, you need to find ways to bridge the gap between providing information and attracting new eyes to our content. Unfortunately, even if you are advertising the best, cheapest, and most relevant information, services, or products, the reality is that people will simply not click on you or your website.
This is for many possible reasons:
- If you are new, there is not much credibility and trust between consumers and your company.
- If there are other well-known companies in your line of work, consumers recognize them over you and will give them their business instead.
- And, very importantly, if you or your post is simply boring – unattractive, rudimentary, or cliche, people won’t click on it.
However, there are ways to change this.
In this example, imagine you run a business that specializes in selling carpet and flooring.
Inspiration for outside-the-box content can be found anywhere. When standing at the line in the grocery store, let’s say you see one of those celebrity magazines with a drunk Paris Hilton spilling red wine all over white carpet. This is your inspiration.
“Paris Hilton and her Red Wine Problem – How CarpetMax Could Keep her Stain Free.”
Bingo. This is a perfect time to write about that special carpet protector you sell at a 400% mark-up, or a stain remover. This is appealing because it’s highly share-able while still having a soft sales pitch within. You’d be amazed at how many of these types of posts people read and then realize this product might work for that pasta sauce stain in the dining room. Even better still, you’ve accomplished what many businesses fail to do – you’ve successfully got them to give your company a look.
Most aren’t going to share an article with their Facebook friends about why Berber carpeting is a more durable option than plush (even if the carpeting is very high quality and inexpensive). The above article is infinitely more shareable. The Paris Hilton example is a great sales pitch in disguise while also attracting the eyes of niche audiences – such as celebrity gossip and pop culture – to your post. This is a cross-niche post, which is exactly what business owners need to be aiming for. It uses the momentum of a popular news story with a massive following, while inserting your brand into the piece to ride the wave of interest. In essence, it’s perfect.
Now, let’s build on that and create additional posts from our one piece of inspiration.
This one photo in a gossip rag can spur several topics all related to a drunken Paris Hilton and her carpet stain problem.
You wrote the first post pitching a stain remover or the pre-emptive carpet protector.
The second post could be a video demonstration of this very thing.
Now here’s where it’s time to get creative. In a third post you could write about alternative flooring types that we think are better suited to Paris Hilton’s lifestyle.
Then you could do a fourth post outlining the type of carpet she had and why it is luxurious enough for a celebrity.
Get the wheels spinning. This is one small idea that just spurred four blog posts and I’m sure you could find more topics if necessary.
Remember, you’re looking for shareable posts that bring eyes outside of your niche while remaining niche-relevant. Like I mentioned before, this could come from anything – magazine at the supermarket to the billboard signs you pass on the way to work, getting niche ideas for your products is far less complicated that you might expect.
Inspiration is everywhere. Start looking.