Being a blogger can be tough going on the old creativity muscles. Often we have a week where we come up with loads of ideas and are quite prolific… but then our minds are blank, and we can’t think of a single thing to say. This is where scheduling posts can come in handy: when you come up with loads of ideas, you can schedule your posts to publish one per day, and hopefully cover those days when you’re feeling uninspired.
How do you consistently come up with new ideas for blog posts?
Here are 7 ideas to help you generate blog post ideas…
1. Spend time with real life people!
I am a massive introvert, and could happily spend all day at home on my own, interacting only with people online. But when you have a real life conversation with a real life person, even if it’s not about your blog or the main topic of your blog, it can often bring up lots of ideas for posts. If you can’t do it in person, try to at least talk to people on the phone on a regular basis and engage in random conversations with no motive… great things can come from this!
2. Set aside time to brainstorm
It can be hard to stick to this one when you feel like you’ve a million and one things to do, but half an hour or so spent jotting down ideas can be a great way to ensure you don’t run dry. The first few times you do this, it feels alien and difficult, but eventually the brain gets used to coming up with new ideas. I know of people who spend an hour every week with just a big, blank sheet of paper coming up with ideas for their blog and it works really well for them.
3. Take notes.
I have a notebook for each of my blogs, as well as one for my podcast. Whenever I have an idea I make a note of it. If I have an idea while I’m out and about, I’ll make a note in Evernote on my phone, or even record a voice note if I can’t write it down. It’s so easy to think of a great idea, and convince yourself that it’s so great there’s no way you’ll forget it… but then two hours later you’re sitting at your laptop, thinking I know I had a brilliant idea earlier… what was it… Write everything down! You’ll be surprised by how many more ideas you’re able to develop into blog posts in this way.
4. Read widely.
I don’t mean you should just read a bunch of blogs in your niche; read news sites, opinion sites, random articles that come up in your Twitter feed and have no relation to what you blog about. You never know where the next idea will come from, but also it’s good exercise for your brain to have to stretch and understand different concepts.
5. Look at your analytics.
Either on Google Analytics or just the site stats on your blog, take a look at the search terms people are using to get to your site. Perhaps a lot of people are Googling one specific thing that you’ve written a post about, and you can find more to say on the subject.
6. Listen to your readers.
When people leave comments on blogs and social media, it’s usually either to voice an opinion or ask a question. Both can be turned into blog posts. Perhaps you’ve written a post where the comments have brought up a whole new set of points for you to address. If someone asks you a question on Facebook, answer them in a blog post if you can.
7. Listen to everyone else!
When you’re queueing at the post office, wandering around Tesco, waiting outside school to collect your children – listen to what’s going on around you. Strike up a conversation with the person next to you, or just listen to conversations. This helps you to find out what’s on people’s minds right now, what people are talking about, what they find interesting.
Do you have any other clever ways of ensuring you don’t run out of blog post ideas?