Someone in the audience at one of my marketing seminars said he’d added a ‘Join our email newsletter’ box to his website… but quickly removed it when he realised it meant he’d have to start writing one!
We all laughed, and I know it was said with tongue in cheek, but it did remind me how so many small business owners struggle to produce content for their email marketing, blogs and social media channels.
Obviously the biggest challenge is lack of time.
However, even when they do manage to carve some time in their diary to sit down and write something, many business owners can’t think of what to write about.
Failing to Communicate is a BIG Mistake
It varies from industry to industry, but as a rule of thumb you should be updating your blog about once a week.
And once a month is the absolute minimum for most businesses.
When you update your blog with interesting and useful content, you have a solid reason to contact your existing customers and clients by email, and also via your social media channels, and let them know about it.
As well as being a regular point of contact with existing customers and clients, you can also emails any prospects who have signed up for your email newsletter list (via one of your many lead pages) and let them know about it too.
This is one of the best ways to build a trusted advisor relationship with your prospects.
The more you become a trusted advisor in your prospect’s minds, the more likely they’ll end up buying from you rather than a competitor, at the point they’re ready to make a buying decision.
So, with all this said, one of the best things you can do for your business today is brainstorm a list of as many blog article titles as possible.
Once you have a list of articles, then when you do next get some ‘spare time’—(ha ha yes I know, a rare thing indeed) — you’ll simply pull out your list of ready made titles, choose one, and start writing.
Writers block will be a thing of the past… what a relief! 🙂
Side Note: If you still struggle to write articles even when you’ve got a title to work from… don’t worry. In the next few days I’m going to share a technique called ‘pre-writing’. it’s one of the real secrets to being able to write truly compelling articles.
However, at the moment your task is to simply write as many article titles as possible.
And today I’m going to make it easy for you!
Here’s are seventy-seven great ideas you can use to generate article ideas for your blog, emails and social media.
I’ve grouped them into various categories so you can pick and choose what’s most appropriate at any given time.
Here they are in both mind-map and list formats…
Stimulating Sales / E-mails to prospects
- How to [achieve a great end result – be specific]
- How [customer] achieved [end result] (Compelling case study)
- Why I wrote/made/manufactured/built/designed/sell [product]
- Reason why [product] is/has feature/benefit
- What [third party] said about our [product]
- What do you want to know about [end result]?
- The secret to [end result]
- Reveal research & design efforts
- Unusual story (e.g. how customer uses it in a way we never thought of)
- Comment on third party results
- Behind the scenes at our office
- Introducing (office member they may speak with/hear from at some point)
- Comment on third party web site article, blog post or forum comment
- Link to YouTube (etc.) video or comment on other (social) website content
- Mention (and link ) to press coverage
- Publish & comment on your own in-house research or survey results
- Offer a contrarian opinion
- Announce survey (with link to survey on Surveymonkey.com or similar)
- Micro-survey “Simply hit reply to this email to send your answer”
- Tell a story or sequence of events that involves different products (with links)
- Video demonstration (Either ‘guerilla’ style or professionally produced)
- Book review from your industry
- Interview an industry expert
- Link to third party blog post with commentary
- Product being removed/deleted (last chance to buy- consider 24-hour special)
- Guide to achieving [end result] (a story-like description of how using two or more products in conjunction]
- General invitation to come and see us at [event]
- Visit us at [event] and get gift/incentive ‘for coming to say hello at [event]’
- Quick reminder about [event] on [date]
- Live from [event]
- Thanks for coming to see us at [event] the other day
- Results of competition held at [event]
Birthdays, Anniversaries & Seasonal
- Happy Anniversary
- Happy Birthday
- Happy ______
- Merry _____
- Open floor question time (optional gift to best question)
- Answer time (and announce winner if offered a gift)
- Ask what people want to know more about (and list subject categories)
- XX reasons to check out the company blog (short list of best blog posts)
- Reward for opening e-mails – first XX people (NB: EMSP must be able to tell you this data)
- Free gift to first person who comments on blog/asks question/ adds link from their site blog/does ‘X’ and sends evidence)
- Mention number of blog readers and offer gratitude
- Announce Blog Birthday (and do something special for readers?)
- Open invitation for articles from other professionals.
- Ask for links and optionally offer to link back/review or mention somehow in future
- Reveal behind the scenes processes & procedures
- Expert Interviews (audio/video with optional transcript) ending with call to action (aff.)
- Set task
- Stimulate entries
- Announce winner & comments
- Recommend third party product/service or free gift
- Review complementary third party product
- Video review
- Interview with the author
- Announce tele-seminar/webinar
- Sell Super Package (multiple products)
- First person to send £XXX via Paypal gets [special offer]
- Extra item ‘added to box’
- Act fast! Only X remaining…
- I’ve reserved this especially for you
- Price increase warning
- Price increase announcement
- Congratulations on the purchase (remind them why they just made a good decision to buy)
- Tip(s) on how to use product or service they just bough
- Example of how customer/client/patient got specific results (step by step they can follow too)
- Customers who bought this also bought [related product or service]
- Would you like this (enhancement or upgrade)
- Free gift – thank you for your business
- Become an affiliate
- Can we have a few minutes of your time (Send us some feedback/testimonial?)
- Can I interview you for my next report/whitepaper/book?
- Customer satisfaction survey (general)
- Ask them to answer ‘x’ specific questions and provide a photo of themselves
- Ask for feedback about [product]
- Arranged for you to get this preferential customer-only discount from a preferred supplier (aff. link)
Product Launch E-Mail Sequences
- Coming soon
- Survey – what would you like to see in the product?
- Preview photos (‘Spy photo’)
- Mention a feature and how it’ll be a big benefit
- Give a progress report/status update
- Launching next week
- Launching tomorrow for ‘xx’ hours only
- Announce XX Hour special
- Only XX hours left
- Only X hours left
- Announce special has finished
- Thinking of updating – what do you want in next version?
- Mention minor updates and new features
- Mention new distribution outlet (e.g. Amazon)
So, those are just some of the ideas you can write about.
Some are a lot more specific than others (like the ideas about product launches for example) and may not be relevant to your business.
However, even if you only use at least 52 of them you’ll have a full year’s worth of blog ideas, if you blog once a week.
Work through the above list, editing the titles to suit your own business and its unique products and services.
Make a spreadsheet of the article titles you come up with in the first column.
In the second column keep the category (as above). And in the third column you can put the date the article was published on your blog so you’ll be able to keep track of which ideas you’ve already used.
Big tip: Just because you’ve used an idea once doesn’t mean you can never use it again. All you need to do is change the words in the article and in a year’s time (or more) simply edit the existing article so it’s written in a different way. There is an infinite number of ways to reuse, adapt, tweak and repurpose the above list.
Always remember the key aim for every email you send, and every blog post you publish is that it should be
- useful and
… for as many of your prospects and customers and clients as possible.
That way, every email you send will demonstrate you care and want them to achieve great results, resulting in better, more profitable customer and client relationships and stand more chance of turning prospects into paying customers and clients.
If you find having a pre-made list of article titles really useful, then you’re going to LOVE my free Content Idea Generator tool!
It’s a simple (and free) online service that generates literally hundreds of ideas in less than one second. Here’s the link – https://www.ContentIdeaGenerator.com