Over and over, I get this same question from both tech companies and the content writers who work with them:
“What should we write about?”
That’s a BIG question.
It’s not one I (or anyone) can answer without knowing a lot about your business goals and target audience. In fact, there’s a whole methodology behind topic development that I’ve built for myself and my clients over the years (it’s one of the lessons in my program for freelance content writers, Content Chemistry: Tech Track, in fact).
There is a starting point that any content creator can use to kick off the process of coming up with worthwhile blog topics.
That starting point is … value.
Not features. Not message. Not financial goals.
What can you provide your audience that will change their life in some (even small) way?
- Make something easier for them
- Teach them something
- Make them feel understood, and/or like they’re part of a community
- Excite or inspire them
This is especially important for tech companies to sit up and pay attention to.
You see, every tech product starts out as a spark of passion. A deep desire to improve the world in some way. An idea for making people’s lives better.
… But somehow, between the points where product development ends and marketing begins, that passion often disappears.
Technology is anything but boring. Yet reading the average blog post from a tech company, you wouldn’t believe that.
So I’m going to give you 7 shortcuts to better tech blog posts – 7 starting points, 7 examples of companies who are doing things right.
This list won’t replace a comprehensive topic development discussion, but it will spark some good ideas the next time you need to figure out what you’re writing about for that next blog post.
(BTW, if you like this post, you can download all these ideas in a PDF guide.)
Post Idea 1: Touch on a Trend
What’s happening in your industry — or better yet, in your buyers’ lives? Blog about something you have a unique perspective or opinion on. If the opportunity presents itself (especially if your readers are aware of your product), show how your company is helping the audience face these new challenges.
See how Mattermark did it.
Post Idea 2: Announce a New Product or Feature — the RIGHT Way
Your readers care about one thing: themselves. When they’re considering your content, they want to know what’s in it for them. Approach product or feature announcement blog posts from a buyer-first perspective. Describe a problem you know your buyers have, and demonstrate how this new product or feature solves that problem for them.
See how Freckle did it.
Post Idea 3: Compare Your Product or Service to a Competitor’s … Truthfully
Build trust with your audience by writing a blog post comparing your product or service to your competitor’s — honestly and authentically.
See how ConvertKit did it.
Post Idea 4: Write Up a Thoughtful How-To
Generously share your knowledge with a how-to blog post that helps readers accomplish a meaningful task. Give a step-by-step tutorial on a topic that impacts buyers’ daily lives. This blog post can also have the added benefit of solving a specific problem (for free), generating goodwill from your readers and making them more open to hearing what else you have to say.
See how Less Accounting did it.
Post Idea 5: Break Down the Latest Research
Is there a new report out with data or insights that would help your target audience? Use your expertise to break it down for readers in terms they can understand, and help them see the value in the numbers.
See how TechCrunch did it.
Post Idea 6: Round Up Valuable Resources
If you’ve been in business for a while, you’ve probably come across a lot of helpful tools, apps, websites and the like. Compile a list of these valuable resources and publish it as a blog post. Make it in-depth. Explain why you added each resource to the list, how you personally use the resource and how the reader might benefit from it in their own life or work.
See how Groove did it.
Post Idea 7: Create an Engaging Case Study
The standard case study formula goes like this: problem –> solution –> results. That’ll get you pretty far when it comes to nudging interested buyers off the fence with social proof. But you can squeeze even more value out of those case studies by making them truly engaging stories on your blog.
See how Nest did it.
Like these ideas? Download them in a PDF guide here.