December 19, 2014

Looking for Blog Topics? @TheSalesLion Has a Few [BlogWorld Coverage]

Marcus Sheridan, who goes by @TheSalesLion on Twitter, is not your average BlogWorld speaker. He doesn’t run a social media agency.  He doesn’t run a marketing agency.  He runs a pool company. In Virginia. And yet, his pool company is one of the most popular in the search engines, in the world.

blogging

How did that happen? After the economic slump in 2008, he found selling pools hard. He turned to writing a blog, and saw great results within 6 months. Now his pool blog gets hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. He is truly, as in the example he gave in his session at this week’s BlogWorld Expo in Los Angeles, a “David” to the “Goliaths” in his industry.

Sheridan gave attendees seven blog topics to write about. Essentially, he said:

“If a consumer is thinking it, you should be writing it.”

Cost and Price

The first topics he covered were cost and price. When he asked the audience how many people talked about price on their websites, only two raised their hands. He asked why we didn’t list our prices.

The bottom line: most of us are afraid to talk about price. We want to talk about value. But he’s found that by mentioning price on his pool site, more people buy from him, simply because he’s not afraid of the conversation.

Problems

He also suggests writing about problems. Customers have problems with products in your industry (maybe even yours). They have problems that your products can solve. Write about them. Sheridan also suggests using negative keywords as a way to draw in people looking for bad reviews, such as “product X bad review.” Even if the product isn’t yours, it’s a way to introduce them to yours if there are bad reviews about a competitor’s product.

Comparing or Contrasting Products

Sheridan suggests comparing or contrasting products. His Product A vs. Product B posts have been among the most visited posts on his blog.

Awards

He also suggests creating awards for your industry, even if it means highlighting competitors’ products. The trick here is that in adding a “Goliath” to your award list and linking to them, they’ll become aware of the honor and link back to your site, thus giving you some great Google juice! Genius.

Breaking News

Finally, Sheridan says that breaking news is another great topic for your blog for driving traffic. The more niche your industry, the fewer people will be covering the smaller news stories, so your blog could be a valuable resource for that information.

6 Comments ▼

Susan Payton - Awards Communication Mgr.


Susan Payton Susan Payton is the Communications Manager for the Small Business Trends Awards programs. She is the President of Egg Marketing & Communications, an Internet marketing firm specializing in content marketing, social media management and press releases. She is also the Founder of How to Create a Press Release, a free resource for business owners who want to generate their own PR.

6 Reactions

  1. Thanks Susan. This will be great for my dad and his grass-fed beef blog.

  2. Susan,

    Great write-up.

    Re: Costs. It’s one of the first things I look for. If it’s hidden I assume it costs too much and my assumption could be wrong.

    Similar to window shopping when the products have no prices!

    Andrew

  3. @Robert–
    That’s so cool! I can think of tons of things he could write about.

    @Andrew-
    See? As consumers, we want the pricing listed. As business owners we don’t. I’m thinking about listing at least starting prices after this presentation!

  4. I think there are some great ideas of how to engage your consumers.
    providing social proof is essential and I really like the idea of talking about problems and how as a a business you provided a solution. Much better than just having smiley, happy, people. It humanizes your brand.

    I also agree with the suggestion about comparing your products and more importantly so does Google.

    Google actually promotes blogs and websites if they compare their products with competitors products as this provides a better user experience for their customers.

    If you think about this from a psychological point of view, if you are providing information on your competitors it shows how confident you are in your own products or service.

  5. Great tips that I will forward to a potential client in a water related field (fishtank). ;) I often get the reaction that the small business owners don’t know what they should write about, so this post could be an eyeopener for them. Thanks! :)

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