One of the most common questions we get here at Content Cucumber is “what kinds of articles should I be requesting?”
To help customers answer this question, we offer several tools. The Content Cucumber Content Strategy Builder is our newest and shiniest addition, but we’re always happy to perform an SEO audit of your content or simply hop on a strategy call, as well. (Just schedule a call with our marketing team!)
In this article, we want to offer a different kind of inspiration. Here’s a quick list of a few of the most common kinds of blogs out there!
There are a number of blogs that each serve a different purpose. Thanks to the rise of Buzzfeed, listicles are the most common type of blog today. These are the blogs you see with the title “X number of ways to do something.” While Buzzfeed mainly uses this type of blog to show of the 10 cutest puppies, companies can use listicles as a concise way to give information to customers. For example, a plumbing company can have a blog with the “Top 10 Plumbing Issues Homeowners Face.” Or, a clothing company can write a blog featuring, “The Top 5 Trends of the Fall Season.”
In a listicle format, each item is listed as a heading. This makes it easy for customers to find the information they need fast. Let’s go back to the plumbing example. If a customer knows they have a plumbing problembut aren’t sure what it could be, they can quickly scan the 10 headings of the listicle. Without reading each paragraph, they can find the problem that resonates with them. Then they can read the information under that heading, to find the solution to their problem.
The internet is a fantastic tool. If you know how to use Google properly, you can learn anything online. More customers are trying to DIY projects. Companies can help customers out through how-to blogs. The blog is exactly as the name implies, you are telling the reader how to do something.
How-to blogs vary for every company. If you are a jewelry company, your how-to blog may be extremely conversational. You can write a blog about how to pick the best earrings to go with any necklace, or how to mix and match different types of metals. In this casual type of blog, you are essentially giving the customer advice. You can also use this blog to plug your own items. If you are telling the customer how to pair silver and gold, you can link to your own silver and gold jewelry items.
If you run a more technical company, such as an Electric Company, your how-to may be less conversational and more structured. You can feature blogs like, how to pick the best light bulbs for your home, or how to change your lighting sockets. These blogs might be more structured with specific instructions. Customers will use them as a guide to DIY projects, rather than a fun suggestion.
When you hear the term “press release,” you might shiver at the thought of all the unresponsive media outlets you have emailed in the past. Media outlets are pounded with hundreds of press releases a day, and honestly don’t have time to share them all. That’s where blogs can come in. You can write and share a press release on your own site! Why have to go through the media, when the internet is just as accessible. By posting press releases on your website, both media companies and customer can see the great work your company is up to.
Whether your blog is serious or extremely conversational, the main purpose of a blog is to connect your company to your customers. While giving customers useful information is a great way to grow your authority in your industry, adding team highlights to a blog is an amazing way to put a face to your brand. Your blog should not simply be about what your company is up to. If your blog is strictly company-centered, customers will not be interested. However, sprinkling in team highlights every once and a while will let customers know you are not just about the business.
A team highlights blog should not be extremely personal. You can send an email about internally when Karen from marketing has a baby, but your customers won’t be as excited. Instead, team highlights should be about the great work your company is doing. This can mean recent community service projects, or awards your employees have won in your field. By showing off these type of team highlights customers will know you are serious about business, your community, and your company culture.
When you're telling a friend about your vacation, you don’t bore them with the bad parts. You don’t take the time to tell them how you did nothing on the plane or waited to check into your hotel room. Instead, you energetically paint a picture for them! A picture of the perfect time filled with laughter and joy. You tell them about all of your favorite parts and the best spots you would love to go back to.
An event summary can be helpful for seminars, conferences, board meetings and more! A lively event summary can shed light on aspects of your company your customers never knew existed. For example, maybe every year your organization volunteers or helps host a charity event. Your consumers could be clueless about your high level of community involvement. Letting them know you care about the community could help foster a deeper trust in your brand authority.
Event summaries can also be a way to educate consumers. If there was an important board meeting, this article is your opportunity to share the highlights of the meeting. What decisions are relevant to your consumers? What changes will be brought about by your meeting? All of those questions will be succinctly answered in your event summary.
Your event summary will paint a lively picture of the best parts of an event your company was involved in. National Science Week wrote an article on the importance of using event summaries to improve attendance rates. Promote your company with an article that only highlights the best aspects of a recent event. The parts worth remembering forever. Your event summary will capture what made your event interesting and important.
You can also have an event summary created for upcoming events. Entice the readers as to why they should attend your event. Your event summary will grab their attention with a witty title. After they’re hooked the article quickly lays out the details of the event and why they should attend. Accurate information delivered in style will boost your attendance through the roof!
Frequently asked questions are often an overlooked goldmine for website traffic. Frequently asked questions are just that, asked frequently! With your focus on your customers, your FAQ page can be a wonderful tool.
Remember, your goal should be to write blog articles that are interesting to your target audience. Interesting blog articles are ones that are relevant and popular. FAQ'S not only increase traffic to your site, but they also help instill a sense of trust and loyalty between you and your customers. Forbes talks here about the importance of keeping your customers in mind when creating your FAQ section.
When a customer has a question they want it answered fast. If you can meet this need they will be eternally grateful. If your answer is helpful and accurate you can build an instantly loyal customer. The type of customer who will refer you to their friends. They’ll fondly remember their online experience with your company and how convenient it was.
A stellar FAQ section will make sure to answer all of the pressing questions their consumers have. If the question isn’t frequently asked, don’t include it in this section. You’ll end up cluttering up space and making it hard for customers to find the answers they’re looking for. Keep your FAQ section up to date and make sure the information is correct!
There’s nothing worse than tricking your customer into thinking they found the right answer, only to find out the information is outdated. You can easily avoid outdated questions by updating and reviewing your FAQ section on a weekly basis. We understand that you’re busy and have to manage your time to be effective. Here are some more tips on how to manage your time when blogging for your company.
The simpler your FAQ section the better. The answers need to be short, to the point and helpful. Don’t confuse your customers with fancy explanations or in-depth answers. You can even be playful and use slang terms your customer would be familiar with. Remember, this section is a direct communication from you to your consumer.
LinkedIn Status Updates
Publishing a LinkedIn status update can help keep you relevant to a large network of professionals. LinkedIn is one of the most professional social media platforms available.
This platform quickly rose as a popular way for businesses to interact with each other.
LinkedIn status updates are ideal for business to business marketing. This is because of the natural demographics of professionals that utilize LinkedIn.
There are a few housekeeping tips to keep in mind for your status updates on LinkedIn. For starters, your updates should be short, engaging and get straight to the point. Long blog posts can be boring and tend to go off topic.
Keep your audience in mind when your writing your powerful update. You are writing for both experienced and new business leaders and professionals. The writing tone should of your article reflect this.
Your article topics for status updates will need to be relevant. Give information to the readers that they are hungry for. Ways to grow their business or save money with tax deductions. Keep your topics both helpful and relevant.
A post should be at least 300 words but doesn’t have to be more than 1,000. LinkedIn status updates will cap out if you try to exceed 1300 characters. Somewhere between 300 and 1,000 words is a good range for holding the reader’s attention.
Case studies tell the tale of how your company saved the day.
Case studies tell a powerful story that compels your audience to continue reading.
A case study highlights an exceptionally positive experience a customer had with your products.
There are two main purposes to keep in mind to write a phenomenal case study. You have to tell the story with feeling and be able to relate it to your audience.
First, your case study needs to use the art of storytelling. In an article written by Well Story, they emphasize the importance of making characters relatable. When consumers relate to your characters, they will love envisioning the story.
The customer's story needs to be told in full detail as if it were a novel. Let the audience know who the customer is and what their life is like. Provide intimate details on the character your customer represents.
Details will bring the characters in your case study to life. Let’s say you were doing a case study about Ashley Thomas. Introduce Ashley Thomas with a vivid description. Make the character someone your customers relate to and care about.
If your demographic audience is mainly Mom’s then choose a story with a Mom as the hero. Give the readers a reason to care about her story. Ashley Thomas isn’t only a consumer. Instead, she’s Ashley Thomas, the career-minded single mother over two who loves to read.
Once you have a good character description, present the problem at hand. What is it that your customer had to fix or overcome? Explain the problem in detail and what it means to the hero or heroine of your story. This is where you are setting the stage to introduce your product as a solution.
Next, you need to relate the content to your audience. Keep the focus on how your customer felt dealing with their obstacle or problem. Make sure you always paint the customer as the hero in the story. You want your readers to be able to imagine how your product could help them be a hero one day too.
Finally, your readers will be caught up listening to the heroic tale. Now that your audience is intrigued, introduce your product. They will be ready to learn more about the product or service that helped their favorite hero save the day.
Resource compilations are another way to enhance your client's online experience.
Resource compilations give links to tools that your clients would find useful. For example, you could write one on the “Top 10 Data Storage Platforms Every Photographer needs.” The article will need to describe the different tools or products listed clearly.
You want your company to be seen as an authority figure within your industry. One way to accomplish this is to provide helpful information that solves problems. Resource compilations are a great tool for establishing yourself as a knowledgeable entity.
The Huffington Post wrote about how time really is money. You can make yourself valuable to consumers by saving them time. You will do the research, find the answers and compile them into one convenient article.
Here at Content Cucumber, we’ve created resource compilations that would help businesses online. For example, we created an article called “4 Digital Marketing Tactics Every Business Should Be Using.” We did the research, compiled the data and presented it in an easy to understand format for readers.
What are We Missing?
This blog doesn’t even scratch the surface of all the type of blogs out there. No matter what goods or services your company offers, there is a blog style that fits your needs. If you’re ready to jump into the world of blogging, check out Content Cucumber to see which style is right for you!