7 ways to come up with brilliant ideas for your blog, over and over again
When did your business blog last get a new post?
If it was more than a week ago, why is that? Because you didn’t have time to write one?
Or is it because you’re all out of new ideas…and the thought of sitting at a computer feeling stuck is utterly unappealing? That’s understandable…no-one relishes losing hours to writers’ block.
But imagine if you had a reliable stream of fresh new ideas for blog posts. Then, sitting down and getting on with the writing wouldn’t seem so hard.
Ideas as a process
The process of having and nurturing ideas starts long before you sit down to write. To make ideas generation easy, you need to integrate it into your everyday working life.
Follow these 7 steps to give yourself a flexible blog plan that allows you to pick up and run with new ideas, wherever you go and whatever you do.
1) Have a goal
What do you want your blog to achieve Be specific: sign-ups for your email list? Greater awareness? Positioning yourself as an expert?
If you’ve defined a goal, you’ve already started to narrow down your options.
So if you want to position yourself as an expert in your field, think about what subjects will help you do that, and what kind of posts. You’ll probably want to look at in-depth, long blogs over 1000 words which demonstrate original thinking.
2) Know who you’re writing for
Once you know your goal, you’ll find it easier to define who you’re talking to when you blog, and in turn, you’ll have a better idea of what you want to say.
If you know that you’re talking to senior influencers in your industry, you’ll need to focus on a different range of subjects than if you’re talking to teenage customers, for example.
3) Decide what your blog categories are
Blog categories help your readers find content that’s relevant to them. They also help you organise your thoughts and produce a balance of blog content that works for your business.
Think again about your audience. What interests them? Can you split up their interests into around 5 to 15 areas?
These are your categories, ready to be filled with new blogs.
4) Talk to people – contemporaries, employees, customers
If you want to know what really interests your people, you’ll need to talk to them. You don’t have to ask ‘what should I blog about?’ (though you could, if it feels appropriate).
You can make sure you pick up on the questions people ask you and the things people talk to you about. What do your customers often ask you or your sales team about? What complaints do they have? What do people praise you for most?
5) Use social media
Take a look at what’s happening on your social media, and use that to spark ideas. Start by looking at what people want to know from you (which may nor may not be the same as the things your customers talk to you about in person).
Also look at trends and see what others in your industry are talking about. Hashtags and Twitter hours are your friends.
6) Think about news and events
What’s going on in the wider world? What’s going on for your target audience?
If your audience is already interested in something, you can ride the crest of that wave. But don’t do this carelessly: you need to add value. What can you say that no-one else does?
Don’t write a Christmas blog just because you feel you should write ‘something about Christmas’ in December. Do write a blog that gives your audience some kind of insight into you or your business that will help create a genuine, meaningful connection.
7) Look at what you admire in others
It’s bad to copy. But it’s fine, even desirable, to allow yourself to be influenced. What blogs do you read? What helps you do your job better? If you and others in your sphere value something, it’s likely your audience will too. See what’s popular elsewhere and then give it your own spin.