'How do I know what to write about in my blog?'
This is something we hear almost on a daily basis.
It can be daunting staring at a blank screen. You're wondering what your insurance agency website visitors want to read.
It doesn't matter how long you have been in the insurance industry or how passionate you are. You have likely experienced the twinge of anxiety about blogging.
Not to worry. We are here to help.
Your blogs do not need to be about insurance all the time. It is reasonable to take some creative liberties on your website. Your blog posts should reflect your personality.
Let's jump right in.
1. Start with your hobbies
Make a list of activities you like to do when you are not working. Now you have several content ideas just from that list.
Look at your list and cross reference your hobbies with insurance. For example, if you like to travel, tie that in with travel insurance.
2. Talk to your agents
This may seem like a strange resource for blog posts. But, it's worthwhile to come together and compile a list of questions they field every day.
It is likely your clients asking these questions have already looked for the answer and did not find it. At least, to their satisfaction.
Or, they did little research and thought it best to ask you. Either way, these questions are an opportunity to get tuned in to the information people are looking for.
3. Use Google search recommendations
I know this suggestion may have you scratching your head, but stay with me. Try this little exercise:a. Open a new tab in your browser and search for one of your main keywords, e.g., car insurance.b. Scroll down to the bottom of the search results. There you will see a section titled 'Searches related to car insurance.' In this section you will see other search options related to your main keyword.c. Choose one of the non-branded options you see (do not click on Progressive, Geico or other branded phrase).d. Again, scroll down to the bottom of the page and find the same section. You should see phrases like 'car insurance price comparison' or 'car insurance comparison chart.'These are things people search for. You can easily blog about these search terms. Do this search for each type of insurance you write, and you will have a healthy list of blog topics.Keep track of the keyword phrases you click on, as these can also be used on your insurance website. See our blog on long tail keywords.
4. Check your Google Search Console
Review the Search Analytics report in your Google Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster Tools). These are phrases your website already ranks for. You should see questions and phrases in this list that can act as the topic for a blog post.
To access your Google Search Console, simply visit http://www.google.com/webmasters. Log in with your agency's Google credentials. Then, to access the Search Analytics report, navigate to Search Analytics on your dashboard.
5. Write about local news and events.
Remember when I said blog topics don't always have to focus on insurance? Write about local events, news and other happenings in your area.
Your website visitors likely live in the same community. Show them you are in tune with what's going on in town and are a credible, source of local information.
6. Browse industry blogs or forum
Look to industry blogs and forums that have active comment sections. See what questions people are asking. Those questions can lead to some great blog topics. For example, if you see a lot of users commenting on a particular topic, that topic might make a worthwhile blog post.
7. Sign up for Google Alerts
Every insurance agency should use Google Alerts. Set up alerts for your agency name and main keywords, e.g., business insurance.
You will get email alerts from around the internet based on the keywords in your alert. You'll also get these in whatever frequency you choose.
Go through these alerts, and see what sparks an idea.
8. Send out a client survey
Create a simple client survey. Allow your clients to suggest topics they're interested to know more about. You'll gain insight into the minds of your clients and relevant potential blog topics.
9. Peruse Quora
Quora is a platform for people to pose questions on various topics. Those questions are then answered by the community. You can follow questions related to the industry or other topics of interest.
Dig through the stream, and look for questions people are asking that could help your clients. Answer each question you find with a blog post.
10. Try your hand at freewriting
This technique is common in brainstorming but can be useful for finding blog topics too. To freewrite, just start writing. Don't worry about grammar or punctuation.
Write whatever thoughts come to mind. It is a good idea to set a timer for this activity. Once the time is up, read through what you wrote and see what you can use as a blog topic.
Bonus: ITC Marketing Blog
Each month we publish a blog with topic ideas you can use. Feel free to use them on your blog or in your agency newsletter. Some even make great content for your social media profiles.
We want to hear from you. Leave us a comment below if you have a question about any of the resources above.
About the Author
Stephanie Ewen helps ITC customers with the search engine optimization of their websites. She has been working in marketing for more than 10 years. Her specialties include web design and search engine optimization (SEO). To stay on top of the latest SEO trends and algorithm updates, Stephanie reads blog articles and participating in courses produced by some foremost experts in SEO. She is certified in inbound marketing, Google Analytics and fusion marketing. Stephanie is an avid softball fan and enjoys volunteering and spending time with her husband, kids and grandkids.More Content by Stephanie Ewen