How to Improve Your Blog by Solving a Reader’s Problem

Today’s episode is a writing challenge and is all about how you can spot and solve your readers’ problems, which is a powerful way to grow your audience.

Do it well and you’ll make a positive impression on people, create a memory and give people a reason to come back, and give people a story to tell others.

In this Episode

You can listen to today’s episode above or in iTunes or Stitcher (where we’d also LOVE to get your reviews on those platforms if you have a moment).

Also – if you have a moment we’d love to get your feedback on the ProBlogger Podcast with this short survey which will help us plan future episodes.

  • How to spot the problems your readers are struggling with right now
  • How to anticipate your readers’ future problems
  • 5 ways you can solve your readers’ problems

Tools Mentioned in this Episode

There are a variety of keyword research tools available but I’m going to recommend you read Rand Fishkin’s “Beginners Guide to SEO”, which has a section on keyword research. He recommends starting with:

The team at Moz also have good tips about how to do Keyword Research.

Further Reading on Solving Readers’ Problems

Also check out these previous ‘writing challenges’ in this series at:

How did you go with todays challenge?

Do you solve your readers’ problems? If so – how did you work out what their problems were? Any surprises?

I’d love to hear your feedback on this approach to blogging in comments below.

Pick up the 31DBBB eBook at 50% Off

Don’t Forget You can also grab the 31 Days to Build a Better Blog Workbook with a 50% discount using the coupon code PODCAST50 during the checkout process here.

  • I will be adding the link to my problem-solving post on Sunday which is when I publish new posts. It will actually be my regular post – Best Buys in August – that help people get the biggest bang for the buck. So I’ll see you back here then.

  • What a long day! I already had a post scheduled to write today and wanted to write it with a different take from other posts I had read. It’s always interesting how a post starts to take a life on its own. So my post on heat loving plants turned into ideas for reclaiming a hot and humid, sun-drenched porch: http://www.annsliees.com/journal/2015/7/15/abandoned-your-sun-drenched-balcony-reclaim-it

  • In Google Analytics. I have a question, I looked for the search term /?s= and found none in my behaviour section but then I don’t have thousands of views so perhaps it s more about that. What I did see was /tag/xyz which I wondered if this might be something similar? certain posts that are popular appear as a high ranked /tag page. I used to have the TAG bubble thingy on the sidebar but took it down a while back, cleaning up my site visually, perhaps I should put it back as I seem to have a lot of /tag views???

  • I am getting so much form doing this process with everyone, my website/blog has transformed and people have noticed and commented. Thank You Darren for all your effort to help us be better bloggers. IT WORKS!

    So my ‘Solve a readers problem’ post is about Shade http://www.rosewarnegardens.com/shade-a-definition/ and in fact it speaks to a couple of things you’ve talked about lately. Updating older posts and linking to popular posts. I did one a few years back on Shade Planting and it has consistently been one of my most visited and Google searched posts. So this post gives more detail about shade and links back to the older post and also to an Amazon book via my affiliate account 🙂 I’ev linked to a video pn Photo synthesis but i’m ging to wriet a post on it myself in the near future so it’s a filler for now…

    Reading around blogging i read somewhere in the last 16 days that there is an optimum photo to words ration (about 1 pic:100 words) so I am trialing that too.

    • I like using internal links b/c it can help to keep a reader on your site. I was just starting to see the benefits of this when I had my domain name snapfu. Still, it’s a great to use. When I go to other sites & see a link I’m interested in, even if I don’t have time I bookmark it to read later.

    • Pete Reece

      How successful was your post Rosalind?

  • You worked SO HARD on your latest pitch/story/book! How can writers “bounce back” from rejection? http://megdowell.com/2015/07/16/a-writers-guide-to-bouncing-back-from-rejection-31dbbb-day-16/

  • This is an area where I need assistance. I want to connect with other bloggers who desire to start businesses that create change. I want to connect my readers with resources on how to start organizations similar to New Story Charity or Pencils Of Promise. Click here to read about New Story Charity

  • I’m definitely going to do a survey, it’s at the top of my cluttered list!

  • Great challenge – and not only did I get a post out of it, but an article for the next print issue of the magazine!
    I have tried to solve the question of how the First Home Owner Grant applies to owner builders, blog post here: https://theownerbuilder.wordpress.com/2015/07/17/first-home-owners-grants-and-owner-builders/
    I have also posted a link to the blog post on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheOwnerBuilder/posts/860266857392673

    It will be interesting to see the reaction.

  • Ok so this is a very common questions that is asked of me, “How do I keep my website secure from hackers”, so I wrote this post around it.
    “Basic tips in keeping your site secure” – http://joomlabe.at/joomla-advice/management/basic-tips-in-keeping-your-site-secure

    I can now just refer people to the post. Much easier.

  • I’m falling a bit behind in this challenge. While looking for a topic to blog about, I came across a few people with the same problem as me, so I decided to blog about that: How to enjoy the outdoors while you’re injured. http://headingforthehills.com/2015/07/how-to-enjoy-the-outdoors/

    • Looking at the amount of comments from day one on each post til now @disqus_mo6ZZCUhTQ:disqus, I think a lot of people are falling behind.

    • BTW, let me know @disqus_mo6ZZCUhTQ:disqus if you want to collaborate on a user submitted and generated walking trails community site. Been wanting to build it for years.

      • I would LOVE to chat about this as i have an idea about creating a platform for hikers,trail runners and mountain bikers to share info on tracks. Won’t say too much here but i know it’s bigger than me and will need a team to pull it together. You can email me at sandra l muller @ gmail . com

  • Playing catch up as I’ve been away travelling. This was an interesting one, I’ve never really looked at google analytics before, just avoided the stats thing completely… It was interesting to see which posts are performing best and where my readers come from. There’s no searching going on, but it’s given me lots of ideas for future posts around the reality of living in Greece and coming on holiday here. Thanks

  • Joe

    Hi Derren, I heard your interview with Brian Clark and wanted to check out what you’re doing. So far I have listened to all your podcast and am enjoying the 31 days to boot a better blog series. I’ve have a technical blog about cloud technology so I have put together a post to help anyone wanting to get their WordPress site off shared hosting and onto a more powerful dedicated cloud server. I know this has been my pain for a while and with this new cloud platform it is easy for even a newbie. Here’s the link, please let me know what you think? http://www.vminstall.com/cloudways-review/

  • I’m new to blogging so am getting such a lot out of these Podcasts Darren as I add more and more content, and although a few days behind I’m really enjoying the challenges!
    For this one I used a question that I have been asking and researching myself as a travel agent (I specialise in sustainable trips to Latin America) which is “how can clients identify a sustainable holiday?” I noticed that I had already partly answered this in another Blog post so divided the posts and expanded on this one https://latinadventures.wordpress.com/2015/07/19/how-to-identify-a-sustainable-holiday/
    Feedback graciously received!

  • I’m a little behind on these podcasts, but luckily, I just a couple of days ago posted about a problem I had. I had been writing a series of posts on “inspiring people” in my community, but needed to actually reach out to those people before writing posts about them – which freaked me out! It seems so silly, but it was incredibly hard for me to overcome that fear of talking to people about my blog. And as it turned out, my readers seemed to really like it and said that it helped them overcome their own fears. Also, one of the “inspiring people” shared my post on her professional facebook page which made my stats soar. 🙂

    http://tryniakaufman.com/2015/07/17/the-fear-of-becoming-important/

  • Pete Reece

    I’ve been out of it for a while with having been on holiday and a we had a visitor before that so catching up now. I did produce a post which I hoped would solve a reader’s problems but it bombed. Very few people found it on Google it seems. I think part of the problem is that I don’t really understand key words yet. My research for the “problem” was based on popular search terms in Google but I think there were probably too many search results on that issue – How To Take Control of Your Health – for my blog post to get anywhere near the top. Ah, well. At least I know a bit more about what I don’t know!

  • Jenn, Endlessly Inspired

    I’m totally late to the party on this Build a Better Blog Challenge, but I just went through my analytics to see what people were searching for on my blog and I was blow away. There were so many things on there that I had no idea people were interested in. I have so many new ideas on what to write. This was one of my favorite challenges so far, thanks!!