December 20, 2016

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Business blog part 4: Content train for highest conversion

In this part of the business blog series we’ll continue to make a content train for your business blog. This is the last step to deciding which subjects you’ll write about. In the previous blog of the business blog series, we discussed choosing the right keywords based on competition, search volume and relevance. In this blog we’ll teach you how to use this information to create a clear overview of all the keywords, with the help of a content train. Also, we’ll explain to you how to combine these blogs to get the highest conversion rates.

How to create a content train?

If you want to create a good content train, you should use the following three steps. Of course, you can give your own twist to the content train, but these steps will help you to get a quick start.

  • Step 1: Select the most important keywords

Thanks to the keyword research you’ve done in the previous business blog, you probably have a big list of keywords. To make your content train it’s important to choose the right keywords to continue with. Which words do you choose to write about? Which keywords fit the needs of your focus group and are connected to what your business has to offer?

  • Step 2: Divide into phases

In one of the first business blogs you’ve chosen some phases while making the customer journey. These phases can be useful right now. Divide your keywords into these phases so you can support every step your customer with content in every ‘step’ they take within the customer journey.

  • Step 3: Check the whole picture and add missing pieces

After you’ve split up your keywords in the different phases, you should take a look at the whole picture. Does this content train of blogs tell the whole story of the focus group? Is there anything important missing? Do you provide the content you want to provide? You can make your content train as comprehensive as you want to. But never forget, your own judgement about the relevance is just as important as high volume rates and low competition. So if a subject is important for your ‘whole picture’, just add it to the content train.

Part 8: Case Gerards online petshop
Gerard creates a content train by following the previously mentioned steps. He uses Microsoft Excel to organize his content train.

First, he selects the most regular keywords that he definitely wants to write about. For example, ‘dog toys’ and ‘dog care’. He puts the keywords into the phases of his customer journey. ‘Dog toys’ gets divided into the ‘Purchase’-phase and ‘dog care’ in the ‘Care’-phase. After all of the regular keywords, he takes a look at the rest of the keywords and he fills all of the phases until he has twenty keywords to get started with.

Content train as means of conversion

After following the three steps, you’ll have a clear view of your personal content train. You know which loose blogs you have to write and which keywords and directions you’ll follow while writing them. However, there is much more to gain from your blogs if you link them together as one. That’s the tactic you should follow if you want to have a successful business blog.


Within your chosen keywords, there are always some ‘big players’ with high search volume rates, low competition rates and a high relevance. We call these blogs the ‘locomotives’. Also, there are a few blogs that aren’t just as good as your big players, but they do have an added value to your story. We call these blogs the ‘wagons’. Together they make your content train. The locomotive pulls the other blogs forward and is used as the means for ‘real conversion’, like a subscription to the newsletter or the purchase of a product. The wagons are intended to lead your visitors to the locomotive. To lead them to the big players you use links within your wagons. For example; “Do you want to read more about nice toys for your dog? Read this blog!”

Part 9: Case Gerards online petshop
Gerard thinks about his blogs and starts to separate the ‘locomotives’ from the ‘wagons’. He decides to choose one blog as a ‘locomotive’ in every phase and links all of the other blogs to this big player. In this document you’ll be able to see how he divided his blogs: content-train + goals (ENG).

Within each ‘locomotive’, he puts some links to specific articles that he sells. He hopes to trigger his visitors to take a look at the products.

The number of blogs you should write in one content train depends. You can write as many or few blogs as you want. In Gerards case, he writes about twenty blogs for two focus groups combined. This is a good way to get started, but you can also choose to write more blogs for just one group or combine even more focus groups in one content train. This totally depends on you and how you want your business blog to be.

It’s smart to spend more time and attention on your locomotives. These are the leading blogs and create the actual conversion. Of course, the wagons are also important but this blog has the lead. Make sure you write a qualitative article with a strong story, nice pictures, structured heads and a good overall look.

That’s the basis, now what?

If you’ve followed all of the business blogs until now, you’ve created a clear fundamental for your business blog. You know which keywords you have to write about, which blogs are the ‘big players’ and which ones are there to support the locomotives. The next step is to start writing, planning and promoting your blogs. Do you want to know how to get started? You can read this and much more in Business blog part 5: Writing, planning and promotion.

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