A topical blog is a blog that is about something that is newsworthy, now.
It is about capitalising on a subject at the time that it is HOT!
Doing this can bring you fame by bringing you a big bunch of eager new visitors.
I have a wonderfully nepotistic case study for you: my husband John a.k.a the Sober Paddy.
The Sober Paddy blog has been going for 2.5 years. It has been slowly cruising as has John. He has no desires to turn it into a business, it is simply a personal account of his journey.
The lucky blog
In June there was an event. A high profile ex-football captain had a complaint about the Irish football fans. Rather than his usual posts, John posted a heartfelt blog in the form of an open letter. This happened:
The blog was shared over 2000 times on Facebook and over 10,000 people visited his website in 3 days. For someone who averages just under 1000 visitors a month this was a big deal!
He got lucky and wrote the right blog at the right time.
The blog was topical. He posted it the day after the event when people were still feeling emotion from the event.
The slightly more calculated blog
At this point he started analysing the success of the blog. People liked his perspective on sport and he had chosen to blog about something big in the news that had just happened.
So he tested the theory when his old coach retired from his Gaelic Football team he wrote another topical blog, this happened:
- Shared a lot on Twitter (no stats)
- Over 1000 visitors in a week
- 2 page spread in a major newspaper
- A smaller article in another major newspaper
- Blog reposted (with permission) to a website with 20,000 members
- Radio interviews
- Many more requests come in daily
In both of these cases he wrote the right blog at the right time and it has lifted the visibility and credibility of his blog to new heights.
I might hear you say that not everyone has a story that is quite as newsworthy as his second one.
This may be true but you don’t need to be an ex-goal keeper to be able to provide great content that people feel compelled to share. You just need to take a point of view that will inspire, excite or anger people into sharing it.
It’s a formula
What John has stumbled on is not exactly ground breaking, but it is a smart formula for writing successful blogs.
Here are some pointers:
- Choose topics that are trending in Twitter or that are big in the news or social media today.
- Produce great content that people may want to share.
i.e.: If you know there will be an announcement, write about it. If you feel thrilled or outraged by an announcement, write about it. If you can contribute facts, experience or perspective to the topic, do so. This content could be in ANY form (videos, images, blogs) as long as it is shareable.
- Share it like crazy through your normal means PLUS contact people in the media that may be interested in the content too.
- Keep blogging! Be consistent with your content even if you can’t find a topical post that suits you right now. Just be ready to jump when a chance arises.