Writing content for your website is difficult at times. Sure, there are days where the ideas just flow, but other times you can sit and stare at your monitor trying to come up with something to say. That’s just the life of a writer. Here are some ways to get ideas for a blog post that you may not have considered lately.
1. Comments From Your Social Media Pages
Did a recent post generate discussion on your social media pages? Take off from that and cover whatever new angles the comments brought up.
2. Respond to Someone Else’s Articles
Sometimes the stuff you read elsewhere can inspire you. Don’t limit yourself to commenting on their websites, consider whether or not an article on your own site makes for a better response. Make sure you link back to the article that inspired you. They get a link, you get inspiration for more content on your site. Do it right and there’s some serious mutual benefit.
3. Refresh Old Content
Your old posts may still be good stuff, but often enough there’s something more you can add to it or update. Little changes make a big difference. It’s also a great way to bring up a familiar to you topic to new readers who may not be aware of it.
4. Answer Frequently Asked Questions
If people email you a lot of questions or post a lot of questions in your comments, you probably have some you see over and over again. Write up a good blog post. You may be able to write an entire post on a single question or cover a bunch of them in one shot, depending on how much detail is required.
5. Read Related Forums
Posting on relevant forums with a signature line can be good marketing, but it can also help you get ideas for your blog. Look at what people need from the forum. What do they talk about? If it’s relevant there, you can probably work it into a blog post.
6. Check Your Analytics
How do people find your website? The search phrases people use can tell you a lot about what people want from your site. Write more about those subjects.
7. Check Relevant Hashtags
Twitter hashtags are great for finding out what people think is relevant to what you do. Keep an eye on what’s getting tagged as relevant and figure out how to use it.
8. Do Keyword Research
You don’t have to have a fancy tool like Market Samurai (although I love it!) to do keyword research for your blog posts. You can do quick research using the free Google Keyword Tool to discover actual phrases people search for. Find that perfect combination of relevance, low competition and adequate number of searches to find your next subject.
9. Use Google Suggest
Rather like using the Google Keyword Tool, but suggested search can come up with some really odd stuff. These searches can be pretty common, so I suggest checking them out with the keyword tool to see if there’s a better phrase out there. Uber Suggest is a website that compiles a list of suggested terms from any keyword you put in, and is another good option.
10. Compile Great Information on a Topic
Your posts, someone else’s posts, whatever makes the list useful. Linking out to other sites can be good for your site, and linking to your own information can help your readers find information they didn’t know you offered. A well compiled post can itself be a great resource for your readers.
11. Ask Your Readers What They Need
The people who know best what they’d like to hear from you are your readers. Ask them in your blog, on your Facebook page, your Twitter stream or wherever else, what they wish you’d blog about.
12. Make a How Not To Post
How to posts are common. Have a little fun and make a how not to post. I did this some time back with my how to fall for a work at home scam post some time back – most posts are about how to avoid falling for work at home scams, so I twisted that around just a little bit for the fun of it.
13. Share Your Milestones
Have you reached a great milestone in your business? It can be as simple as an anniversary or as big as reaching a certain goal.
14. Discuss a Myth
Most industries have their myths, such as the notion that running a home business is always ridiculously easy, what with the fancy house and cars. Discuss a myth relevant to your site and explain why it just isn’t true.
15. Check Pinterest
What relevant pins are trending in your industry? This works better for some subjects than others, but can have great potential, especially if your take on it is highly pinnable.
16. Share Photos and Other Images
People love to share photos. While you need to make sure that the photos you use are okay for use on your website, if you want it to spread socially you should also make sure that the photos will be okay for that.
17. Make an Infographic
A good infographic is hard to make, but can be utterly worthwhile. Share some great information in an infographic and make sure it’s easy to share. Include code for those who want to embed it on their own site.
18. Use Yahoo! Answers
Yahoo! Answers is a wonderful place to discover what people want to know. You don’t have to answer questions on the Answers site itself – if someone’s asking there, odds are people are wondering the same thing elsewhere and using a search engine to find the answer.
19. Check Current News
Is there anything happening in current news that you can relate to your subject. Be sensitive to what’s going on, but relating to news stories can bring in a lot of visitors. Consider how a particular bit of news will impact your readers or your business, for example.
20. Use Videos
Make your own video or embed a relevant one from YouTube and discuss it in your blog post. You don’t have to have a perfect setup to record something all your own to make use of video. Just find something and include it in an article. Making your own is most effective, of course, but it’s not for everyone.