Day 5 — Finding Content Ideas and Creating Flagship Content
Content is the only reason visitors come to your site. If you impress them with useful information, they may come back to your blog again. As during the Thirty Day Challenge you will be using a blog to build your site, you also give the readers RSS feed to subscribe to. To no surprise, they will only subscribe if you have the right content.
It is important to realize a blog is just a tool. You don’t carry around a hammer before you know what you want to do. Before you know that you’re going to hang a picture on the wall, and know where exactly you will put the picture, you pay attention to the outcome and plan first.
This is the reason why you should start with content. Creating a blog is the easiest part. What’s more important is creating the right content that the readers want.
Getting into the Reader’s Mind
Again, you should walk in the reader’s shoes for at least a mile to understand what they are searching for when using certain keyword in search engines.
Here is the thing you should consider. Just because you rank at the top of search engines doesn’t mean that your traffic will buy what you have to offer. The product to message match is important… and there is one other thing that is just as critical.
Your content / article / blog post is going to represent you and your business to the readers. It is your chance to build credibility and establish trust. If you fail to do that, and worse still, you ruin the relationship with low quality content, they will click away in a fraction of a second.
That is not good for your bottom line. Giving the readers a good user experience is necessary if you want to move them closer to the buying decision. It is really not a complex concept.
Finding Content Ideas That Sell
This is something Thirty Day Challenge overlook in some ways. Certainly being on top of search engine results is important, but there is no way you can determine if it is the content the readers really want.
While you may argue that content will climb up the search engine ladder only if they gain backlinks, or votes, from other web pages, nowadays there are many ways to gain backlinks. Quality of content is less significant nowadays, although it is still important.
Average content with the right promotion is going to move to the top of search engine result pages, but quality content without much promotion will not move an iota.
Promotion is necessary, and Thirty Day Challenge certainly focus on that too. But another thing that is missing here, in my opinion, is giving the readers what they really want.
While looking for other people’s articles for ideas may help determine the topic of interest of the readers, there are a few places that you can tap into and immediately find ideas that sell:
- Web forums or discussion boards. Every discussion thread is practically an article idea in and of itself. For every individual who asks, there are many others who have the same questions but never ask. If you are able to find the right match between the questions and your primary micro-niche keyword, you have just hit gold.
- Yahoo Answers. This is another online marketplace to ask questions and get answers. As with discussion boards, you will be able to find a lot of content ideas that people want to read. Pay attention to popular pages with a lot of responses.
While subscribing to blogs and news feeds can help you get ideas, nothing is as powerful as tapping into the reader’s mind. Of course, some popular articles have gone through a lot of researches before they write the article. If you know that for sure, using ideas from your news reader can be as powerful as well.
Your Idea Bucket
The time when you are more likely to be loaded with ideas is when you expect them the least. That’s why you need to establish a system, what I call idea bucket, to capture ideas. This can be very helpful when you sit down to write your content. The last thing that you want is to stare at a blank computer screen for half an hour or more just to come up with a simple idea for your next content.
Idea bucket can be as simple as a simple notepad. It should be convenient enough you bring it with you every where you go so you always have paper and pen within arm’s reach whenever you have an idea. You should also collect stories that you can relate to with your content. Story sells, and it can be a great opening paragraph and as a transition to the main content.
Creating Flagship Content
Again, it is important to emphasize on relevance. You want the search engine rankings, but the relevance of the content is going to convert the readers to customers. Although conversion is the third part of the magnificent symphony, you should keep your ultimate outcome in mind when creating content. It is not random traffic that you want, but one that will attract the right readers.
Nowadays with social media, you can’t expect other users to vote (or thumb up) your content unless you offer superb quality pieces of article or blog post.
If you get in the social media with sub par content, you will soon find out that it can actually hurt your capability to take your blog to the next level. That certainly is worse than not submitting to social media sites at all.
You can use the attribution method to produce content. Here’s how it works.
You quote interesting content from one source, put your twist around it, and link back to the source. While this is the easiest way to produce content, it should not be the only source of content for your blog.
Unless you are someone the readers sought after, chances are you can’t just re-purpose other people’s content. You have to own your own unique content.
Practice makes perfect and if you are at least interested in the topic you are writing, you should be able to produce the content on a continual basis.
Yes, you can sell your blog later but if you are in for the long haul, you should be prepared to work on the topic every day for years.
Back to the content production, you should prepare a few flagship content based on the keywords you are targeting. Don’t worry too much about keyword density. You should put the keyword on a few key places and let the content flow naturally. More and more, search engines are able to recognize natural writing. That means that while you should focus on proper placements of keywords, you should write with human visitors in mind instead solely to satisfy search engine spiders.
Remember, people are human beings. Search engines don’t have money to spend. People do. Instead of writing gibberish, you should include keywords (your main keyword and other thematically related keywords) only when they make sense in the content. It you overdo it, it may even suppress ranking.
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