Updated: May 8
Blogging can be finicky. You can write posts that are super successful and get tons of views. Or you can write posts that literally nobody reads and end up being a waste of time.
The X factor? Your topic (yes, things like headline and SEO keywords play a huge part in a blog post’s success but the topic has to be solid before any of that matters).
The solution? Pick good topics to write about.
Seems simple, right?
Not so fast. If it was simple, every blog post would get 10,000 (or 10 million) views and just as many shares.
In reality, picking blog post topics that will be a hit takes strategy and planning.
Here’s how to pick the topics for your coworking blog in 4 steps (plus 3 tools to help you in the process)
1. Know your target audience
Rule #1: create content specifically for your target audience.
Rule #2: never forget rule #1.
Writing blog content without a reader in mind is a completely back asswards approach. It’s almost guaranteed to be a dud.
Before you start brainstorming topics, you need to have a solid understanding of your member personas (for more on this, check out my blog post).
By understanding who your existing or target members are, you can more easily pick topics that are relevant to them (and more clickworthy and impactful by extension).
2. Make it relevant to your reader
Your blog topics need to be focused in on your audience. Your content needs to be relevant to them in order for them to care and, most importantly, gain value from spending their time reading it.
Based on your buyer personas, think about things like your audience’s:
Challenges – What is a challenge they face that you can help them find a solution for? For your members, this could be things like DIY marketing challenges.
Interests – What are they passionate about that you can tap into to grab their attention?
Knowledge gaps – What is something they might not know about that you could educate them on to help make their lives easier or better?
You’ll also want to balance evergreen content (stuff that doesn’t go out of date) with timely content (things that are currently popular and trending).
The former will allow you to repurpose the content down the line and bring new eyeballs to it later on.
The latter will help your odds with search engine algorithms and will help gain clicks based on being current (for instance, I recently wrote an article, Why It’s Time to Trim the Fat When it Comes to Communicating About COVID-19, which, because of its timeliness, became my most viewed and most shared post).
Given that your coworking space's doors are probably closed due to COVID-19, it might be smart to write some current content about what your members can expect once you finally re-open.
Your blog topics should be helpful and ultimately provide value to your reader through actionable takeaways they can benefit from.
3. Start broad and then dial in
Here’s a good rule of thumb: the more specific your blog post can be, the better.
Remember, your content needs to provide clear, actionable takeaways for your reader.
So, when picking blog topics, my advice to you would be to start broad and then dial in.
What I mean by this is that you should think about a broad theme that pertains to your readers’ challenges, interests, or knowledge gaps.
For instance, if you've identified that your members or prospective members could benefit from DIY marketing advice, your broad theme might be how to market a small business.
Then, you could look at dialing in on a ton of specific topics within this broad one, such as:
10 Easy Tactics for Marketing Your Small Business on a Budget
5 Tools to Make DIY Marketing Easy
How to Measure the Results of Your Marketing Efforts
While all of these specific topics tie back to one overarching theme, they each offer your reader a very clear and actionable takeaway by addressing a very specific focal point – in turn giving your reader a defined value outcome in exchange for their attention.
4. Use these free topic generation tools
There are a ton of great free tools to help make your topic generation way, way easier. I’m a big fan of these three. I’d advise using them for guidance and direction rather than verbatim topic ideas, but they can make it a whole lot easier to identify things that will be relevant to your audience.
Answer the Public – This amazing tool offers you a ton of consumer insights using data drawn from the autocomplete sections of search engines like Google (this is the function that gives you recommended searches as you’re typing in your query).
All you need to do is type in a topic and this tool will churn out a ton of questions that pertain to it. You can use these questions to inform your topic ideas.
BuzzSumo – With BuzzSumo, you can get quick access to articles that are trending in relation to your specific search query. It also provides you with the article’s social share volume (the holy grail of content sharing), the number of links to the article, and an “evergreen score” which gives you an idea of its longevity.
You can use this data to inform your content by capitalizing on a topic that’s already getting a ton of attention. You can also check through the article, drawing inspiration for how to optimize your post by examining for what makes it so great, and to link back to it while writing.
Hubspot Topic Generator – Ready to use AI at its finest? Check out Hubspot’s Topic Generator. With this tool, you can simply type in a topic that you want to write about, and it will fire back generic blog title ideas. The free free version only gives you five ideas (a week’s worth, as they say), but by dropping in some of your personal information, you can unlock another 250 more.
My advice with this tool would be to take the topic ideas with a grain of salt. I wouldn’t take the topics and run with them verbatim, but they can certainly help point you in the right direction.
Last but not least… you can also simply ask your members what they want to read about.
You can do this by asking them at the end of a blog post to leave their thoughts on what they’d like to learn about in the comments section.
Or, you can simply fire off an email and ask them, letting them know their input is valuable to you. There’s no source more reliable than your target audience when it comes to picking up insights for what to write about.
You could even simply post a message on your space's bulletin board.
Creating blog topics is a pivotal part of creating a blog that drives quantifiable results for your coworking business. Make sure to take your time, think strategically, and don’t rush. You’re better off creating lower quantities with higher quality.
If you’re in need of support or advice for how to create a results-driven blog, get in touch.