I Know I Should Be Blogging, But I Have Writer's Block!

man-1246277_640.jpgYou know your website needs fresh content - it's a critical step toward search engine success. But what can you do to break through a case of writer's block?

First, let's take a step back and remind ourselves why fresh content is so important.

On many websites, this new content is delivered in the form of a news column or a blog. News or blog posts can serve several purposes, such as:

  • Providing valuable information or insight to your customers,
  • Allowing you to use a friendlier, less formal voice so the public more easily connects with you,
  • Positioning you as a subject matter expert in your field, and
  • Displaying new keyword-rich material each time a search engine crawls your site.

If you find yourself sitting down to write a post, but instead staring blankly at the pulsing cursor on your screen, here are a few ideas to kick start your blogging session:

  1. What kinds of questions do you get from your customers? Think about your last several interactions with customers - what problems were they having? What issues did they need to overcome? What insight were you able to provide? It's likely that your potential customers may have these same issues and questions, so posting about these topics on your blog shows that you're a person with answers and advice.
  2. What search keywords do you think potential customers might be using? Put yourself in the shoes of that potential customer and imagine them sitting down in front of a google search bar and typing a phrase or question.  What are they typing or asking? Now, build a blog post around that phrase or question - this will help Google connect that potential customer with your site, because your content is a match.
  3. Are there students or interns you can approach about writing guest articles? In some industries, this can be a win-win for your company and for students. For example, if you have a law firm website, why not ask law students to write guest blog posts (with your oversight and approval, of course)? The student will be pleased to have published material online, and you'll have fresh, content-rich blog posts for your site.
  4. What news is happening in your industry? Do an online news search for your particular field or industry. You never want to copy or plaigarize information that already exists on the web, but you can often refer to existing articles about your industry and then offer your own insight into timely topics.
  5. Are there seasonal tie-ins to your industry or services? For example, a dentist's office could post a Halloween-related blog about candy alternatives for trick-or-treaters. An accounting firm could post quarterly tips about calcualting estimated taxes. A restaurant could offer menu suggestions for a special Valentine's Day meal.
  6. What recent accomplishments can you share with the world? Don't be afraid to be your own cheerleader. Have you recently wrapped up a fun project? Landed a new client? Gotten great feedback from a customer? Take a moment and write about this in your news or blog section. Let folks know about your successes - it just might be the thing that converts a potential client into an actual one.