Are you starting a blog? Have you been blogging for a while? Regardless of whether you are a ‘newbie’ or an ‘old hand,’ there is one problem most of us face from time to time: thinking up fresh ideas.
You see, as a blog writer, you can only get away with the ‘same old same old’ for so long. So, the onus is on you to generate fresh content to satisfy your readers. Fresh content is also vital for generating internet traffic because Google factors a blog post’s age when determining how it should rank.
Sometimes, though, despite our most noble efforts, finding inspiration is like chasing shadows. It’s tough; I’ve been there, but don’t give up.
Some ideas to consider
There are many topics you can write about. The important thing is that you focus on what is of interest to your customers.
What’s happening? Has your company hired someone new, or won an award?
A case study
Highlight a successful project. Don’t write an advertisement; make it real. Explain the challenges you faced and how you overcame them. A good case study shows how you add value, not tells.
In many cases, the purpose of a blog is to answer questions.
- Take note of what your customers ask. Evernote is useful for collecting information; it can sync to your internet-connected devices, and you can share with colleagues.
- Monitor social media sites. Customers are often brutally honest on social media, so this can be a valuable source of ideas. Also, check out question sites, like Quora. You can also conduct a survey on Facebook or Twitter using tools like Survey Monkey.
- Talk to customers and colleagues. It may sound so ‘last century,’ but there is nothing wrong with picking up the phone for a chat.
Subscribe to blogs related to your business; read news websites. I find Twitter to be helpful for gathering ideas because you can create lists of ‘tweeters’ of specific topics. Also, bookmarking sites, like diigo, enable you to save articles or blog posts to read later.
The 4 W’s + H rule
The 4 Ws + H rule stands for what, when, why, where and how. Applying it enables you to spin a topic many ways. For example, as a blog writer, I might write a post called What is a blog? So, my next posts could be
- When should you publish a blog post?
- Why blogging important.
- Where can you publish blog posts?
- How to write blog posts.