If you’re like me, when you sit down to write a blog article you either know exactly what you’re going to write about, you’ve been assigned a topic, or you got nothin’ and two hours to write it in.
The first example is easy breezy because you’re most likely writing about something fun and interesting that sparked an idea in your rapidly functioning brain. But in the case of the latter examples, you’ve been assigned a keyword to use for a topic you don’t know a lot about, or just flat out have no idea what to write about.
Allowing time for research before you start writing your blog – even if you already know what you’re going to write about – adds credibility to your article, can give you fresh ideas, and help you make your good content great with appropriate references to other relevant articles that support your topic.
This kind of research involves more than just typing a search term into Google and referencing a site. While we’ve all become close friends with the Google search bar, if you start keeping an inventory of sites that offer quality information that can back you up, your research will accomlish the following.
Make the article more enjoyable for readers
Here are some ways to enhance your blog with research:
- Quotes from industry experts
- Links to other blog posts and website
Add even more pizzazz with some media like images or a video.
Add Supporting Information
You’ll start to find the favorite sites in your industry, but here are some ways to find the supporting information for your blog article.
Breaking news and how it relates to your industry can offer some fantastic blogging opportunities, also known as newsjacking. Stick to major news sites for your industry or the basics like CNN, Fox, Huffington Post, etc. Beware to not always trust open-sourced sites like Wikipedia. They just aren’t as reliable.
Social media sites
You might have the mindset that social media is just for teenagers or are asking why blog articles should even consider including social media components. The answer is because they offer yet another valuable way to find supporting content. Your target audience is also on social media whether you know it or not and you want to know what they’re talking about.
Here are a few social sites that can help:
Delicious – a way to save, organize, and discover interesting links on the web.
Facebook – if your company has a business page on Facebook, pay attention to what people are commenting in your post and how they are interacting.
LinkedIn – a great place to connect with industry experts and ask questions.
StumbleUpon – helps you find the best websites, videos and photos on the internet based on your interests.
Twitter – helps you stay on top of breaking news and keeps you in the know in your industry. It’s a great place to find a quote.
Add searching social media sites to your list of tactics and you’ll find all kinds of gems.
Promote sharing ideas
The great thing about the inbound marketing mentality is that people are willing to share information – but expect credit to be given where it’s due. Always remember to cite your sources where you got your information, image, infographic, or anything else you used that wasn’t yours, by linking to the source. Educate yourself about copyright laws too just to be safe.
So now you know why blog research is important for your articles - to make it more interesting for readers, offer supporting information, and promote sharing ideas – whether you know what you’re going to write about or not, carve out some time for research before writing.
What is one of your go-to sites for research?
Learn more by checking out the infographic below!