Create Back-To-School Blog Posts Without Working Too Hard
Although summer hasn’t ended, schools are starting up across the country. For content marketers and bloggers this signals the need to develop new content around fall topics. Back-to-school brings with it a sense of seriousness as merchants start building towards their big holiday push.
Use these twelve topics and related headlines to help you quickly develop content marketing and blog posts. Where the word “BLANK” appears fill in a word relevant to your business or blog as you would do with a Mad Lib. Before you dive into creating your content, take time to think through how you can reuse your content for other uses.
- Can you say your ABCs? Title options: “ABCs of BLANK” or “BLANK From A to Z”. This convention works great if you have twenty-six steps or points to make. It’s even better if you have a different word for each letter. Of course, the letters Q, X and Z can be difficult but a little creative license and you can fudge it. Even better it provides a great list structure. Example: The ABCs of Twitter.
- Who is your teacher? Title option: “What I Learned From BLANK”. Everyone has one teacher who made a big impression on their lives. Apply this lesson to your subject. Alternatively, select someone who’s important in your category and create an interview. Even if you can’t meet the person in real life, pretend that you’re talking to him. Include an image of the teacher. Give yourself poetic license to modify some of the details. I literally wrote this article. Example: Why Your Third Grade Teacher Was Wrong About Writing.
- Who is in your class this year? Title option: “10 Top BLANK Ninjas.” A new school year often brings new classmates. Use this approach to spotlight your employees, experts or customers. It’s a great way to incorporate feedback from other people with the use of their photographs and possibly a quote. Example: 13 Tips to Combine Photos and Social Media for Greater Exposure.
- Can you tell me a story? Title option: “10 Customers Tell How BLANK Changed Their Lives.” Stories are a great way to get prospects to remember information because it provides a memorable context for your facts. Consider stories about your organization’s past, founders, products, employees, customer and location. The benefit is that these tales exist and can be adapted to meet your needs, rather than starting from scratch. Example: How to Quit Your Job, Move to Paradise and Get Paid to Change the World. (Amazing read by Jon Morrow!)
- What was today’s lesson? Title option: “How Do BLANK In BLANK Minutes.” Learn from Khan’s Academy that provides school oriented education in short videos. Think education applied to fun stuff. Put life into your lessons by using photographs, presentations or video. Your goal is to make an entertaining learning experience. Example: Here’s a different twist with 22 Top Blogging Tools Loved By The Pros.
- What did you create in art class? Title option: “Customer Spotlight” or “How To Build BLANK”. This title provides the opportunity to spotlight one or more customers and how they used your product. Let them show their work or talk about how they’re using your offering. Photos and video work well to integrate into these posts. Alternatively, do a survey of great artists in your given field. You don’t need to take the word artist literally. Example: The Nutropolitan Museum of Art’s Olympic Rings In Peanut Butter. (Yes, there’s daily work of art or food made of Peanut Butter.)
- What are you reading? Title option: “5 Take-aways from BOOK TITLE” or “BOOK TITLE: What You Need To Know.” While school means reading the classics, you can use this topic to examine the new books in your field. Alternatively, reach out and interview a new author in your field. Explore using video or audio to get the author’s true voice. Alternatively, gather other people’s insights on the book. Example: Stephen King’s 20 Tips for Becoming a Frighteningly Good Writer.
- What are you going to wear this fall? Title Option: “Fall 2012’s Top 10 Fashion Must-haves” or “How to Put Together Your Fall 2012 Wardrobe For Under $500.” School often signals new styles and warmer clothes (depending on where you live.) My mother always took us to get at least one new item of clothes to start the school year. Consumers want to know what’s hot this season, how do you wear the new fashions and how can they integrate them with the clothes they already have. Use photographs to highlight your product. Example: Target’s Rocker Chic.
- What do you need for school this fall? Title Option: “Your Shopping Checklist for BLANK” or “How to Get Everything You Need To BLANK For Under $100.” Remember getting the long list of things to buy for school? Why not apply this to your business? Give your customers a checklist of what they need to do a specific hobby or sport. Bear in mind that this can’t promotional. It has to focus on your customers’ needs. Link your checklist to the appropriate sales page. Go one step further and provide a pattern or recipe where the checklist is an extra benefit. Example: Coconut Shrimp: Bake It!
- Did you do your homework? Title Option: “How to Do BLANK in NUMBER of Days.” What would school be without homework? This works where your subject needs to do different work every day to use your product or achieve a goal. Break the information into smaller daily chunks with related exercises. This is useful for workouts or training. Use a combination of content formats. Example: Content Marketing Checklist: 13 Things You MUST Do Before You Publish Content.
- What are you doing after school? Title Option: “How to Learn BLANK.” Did you have extra curricular activities like sports, music or dance? Approach your product or offering as if it were a fun new activity for your audience. Think along the lines of : What would they need to know? What would they need to do the activity? Example: How to Be a Twitter Chat Champion.
- Can we take a school outing? Title option: “Top 10 Must See Shows In BLANK”. Students often go on class trips to see things that are new or special. For the rest of us, the fall is a great time to take advantage of new theater, movies, museums, television and other live events. If these topics apply to your product, create a spoof around your product. This is another list option provides a format once you’ve done your research. Also, plan for related reviews and follow up pieces. Example: 10 Best Social Media Conferences to Attend in 2012.
Regardless of which of these topics you choose to apply to your subject, remember the goal is to help you create useful information for your prospects and customers that persuades them to purchase from you. Take advantage of different content formats and social sharing.
What other back-to-school content marketing topics would you add to this list and why?
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