Content marketing is important. I know, I know…this is not the first time you have heard this. You are likely part of the 91% of B2B marketers using content marketing to reach customers or the 86% of B2C marketers who think content marketing is a key strategy.

If you are not developing regular content such as blog posts, whitepapers, and reports – what are you waiting for? What is stopping you from getting started? What is stopping you from remaining consistent?

“I don’t know what to write about.”

“My blog posts aren’t creating many leads.”

“I am writing blog posts, but they’re not reaching the right people.”

These are the common challenges marketers hear every day. For those of you who feel like you are writing blind or are struggling to attract eyeballs and leads through blog posts – there is hope.

Research-based content takes the guessing out of blog writing. By using market research to drive your content strategy, you are able to speak to topics your exact audience is interested in learning about.

Most business professionals know writing blog posts is important to an effective overall content marketing strategy. But – they don’t all know how to do it right. Use these 4 data-driven tips for choosing blog post topics.

1. Survey your blog subscribers

What better way to capture your audience’s interests than going straight to the source? Online surveys are an easy, cost-effective solution to learn the reading preferences of your target audience.

An online survey company can assist you in creating unbiased and nonleading questions. Doing so, you are able to better understand what blog topics readers are most and least interested in.

Aside from an online survey generating new blog topic ideas, you can also use a questionnaire to learn more about other preferences of your subscribers.

Asking a question like, “How do you feel about the frequency of posts our company is publishing?” can showcase if you are sharing too much, too little, or just right.

This is a great first step to creating a content marketing schedule most appealing to your target audience.

2. Solve customer pain points

Maybe you don’t have hundreds or thousands of blog subscribers to survey and discover these key findings. What you do have is customers.

Create a customer survey to not only understand what business changes you should be making but what improvements you can make in your content strategy as well.

Remember, your customers best represent a much larger pool of prospects.

Using surveys to ask customers what their pain points and most pressing issues are can help craft blog topics for you to speak to.

By solving these common challenges, you are positioning your organization as an industry thought leader. After all, more than half of these decision-makers said they use thought leadership to vet organizations they may hire.

3. Use statistics as a compelling headline

Lastly, a PR survey is a type of market research where the results are designed to be shared. Each survey question is written with the intention of using the results to create a winning headline or blog title.

The title of a blog post is a major deciding factor as to whether your target audience will choose to click and read more. Don’t believe me? According to Koechley, tests show that traffic to content can vary by as much as 500% simply because of the headline.

Use the findings and statistics found through market research to create a compelling headline that will drive clicks to your website.

For example, a marketing and advertising agency is looking to grow its business in the legal sector. The agency conducts a PR or content survey with 1,000 people across the United States who are clients of a law firm.

A blog post title using a specific statistic from the market research report would be: Learn Why 79% of Law Firm Clients Will Switch to a Competitor.

The blog post can expand on the statistic and other findings from the PR study. Furthermore, the marketing and advertising agency can leverage this blog post to plug their services for those in the legal industry.

This blog post was originally published, here.