I started a list of brainstorming ideas for blog posts last week, but it was getting so long I decided to split it into two parts.
So let’s get right into Part 2!
1) Check Out Conversations on LinkedIn, Google+ and Facebook
You can find groups that fit just about any niche on these social networking sites. Read the conversations that are going on – you’ll find information that’s very topical and genuine. These are the people you’re trying to reach with your blog – so use their own conversations for topic ideas for your posts.
2) Create a video or PDF
If you’re like a lot of bloggers, you’ve probably got old posts that haven’t seen much action, or even a bunch of PLR that you haven’t used taking up space on your hard drive. Turn that material into a problem solving video or .pdf. If you do a pdf, load it up on your blog for free download – “just because”. That’s providing value to your readers!
3) Make a List
Boom – here we are, right here. People love lists, and lists are easy to write. Think of problems that your readers have and make a list of solutions. In the kitchen? Make a list of emergency ingredient substitutions. Mommy bloggers? Make a list of ideas to keep your kiddos from having meltdowns while shopping. No matter what your niche, you can come up with a list of solutions to some problem.
4) Connect Two Things That Are Totally Unrelated
I did this in my email the other day – “What my sons pierced ear taught me about blogging”. The longer you blog, the more you’ll see connections like this; in fact, you’ll start finding that everything you do, you’ll see a way it connects to your blog! It might be “What Game of Thrones Taught Me About Photography” or “Why Fred Flintstone Would Be a Great Chef”. The weirder the pair, the better because it really piques the curiosity and makes people want to read!
5) Use Google’s Autocomplete
We’ve all seen some of the crazy things that Google Autocomplete can come up with – but it can also give you GREAT blog ideas. Just pop in the beginning of a question or idea and see what you come up with. What I like to do is use something like this question below, and then go through the alphabet until something hits me. If nothing is there with this search, then I might go to “uses for b…”, “uses for c…” – I think you get the drift.
This is an especially helpful way to find blog post ideas, because these are phrases that people are actually searching for.
6) Check Out Yahoo Answers
Yahoo Answers may not be the best place to go for a serious answer to a question, but it’s an excellent place to go to find the questions people are asking. Just type in a keyword or phrase related to your niche, and you’ll find plenty of questions that are being asked by real people. You can also try Quora.com – you’ll find more serious questions and answers there.
7) Change Your Environment
Sometimes, a change of scenery can help get your creative juices flowing. Familiarity usually breeds productivity, but if you’re feeling stuck, sometimes all you need is a change to get unstuck. If you’ve got a laptop, move it to another room of the house, or go to a Starbucks to work. Drive to a local park and sit at a picnic table.
You don’t even have to take your laptop – when you get an idea, make a video with your phone.
And remember, changing your environment doesn’t have to mean leaving the house – do you usually write in the morning? Try writing at night. Any change in your routine can be enough to break the dam.
8) Try Some Word Association
Have you ever played word association? One person says a word, and the other person says the first word that comes to their mind. You can use that same idea to come up with blog post ideas. You’ll want to write things down for this one – a computer document, a sheet of paper, a white board, or poster paper will do fine.
Write down a main theme of your blog, and then write down the first five words or phrases that it makes you think of. Do the same thing for each of those words. Take it out as many levels as you want. Each word or phrase that you come up with can be the focus of a post, or you can use them in Google to see what comes up.
9) Make Blog Comments
Visit some other blogs in your niche, and read a few posts with the idea of making a thoughtful, well-thought-out comment. Do you agree with the post? Disagree? Have more information that you can add? Turn that information into your own post.
10) Go to Amazon
No, I’m not suggesting you go on a jungle trek up the river! I’m talking about Amazon.com. Do a search for books in your niche, pick one you like and go check it out. Most books on Amazon have a “Look Inside” option – click on it, and go look at the table of contents. The “….for Dummies” series is excellent for this – the chapters are exactly the things that people in your niche want to know.
How Can You Make Sure You Never Run Out of Ideas Again?
When you use these brainstorming ideas, odds are that you’ll come up with more than one idea. Record each and every idea, no matter how small it may seem. You know how sometimes you get in a groove when you write? That’s when you write as many blog posts as you can, based on those ideas. Write them all, and save them as drafts. You don’t have to worry about perfection or research, just write as much as you can and get those posts saved.
Next time you have a little bit of writer’s block, all you have to do is go through your saved drafts, pick one and clean it up to post. It’s also great to have a few posts ready to go in case you need to take a break for a few days or just have a day when you’re going to be too busy to write.