There are times when I encounter blogger’s block (note the pun lol).
Where I pull my hair out to come up with blog ideas.
Fortunately, my blog is quite new so there are still numerous topics I have not wrote about. But if you’ve been blogging for a long time now, you might run out of ideas. And finding a new topic that doesn’t reiterate your previous articles is quite hard…
So, to avoid being repetitive, we need to have a few brainstorming tactics.
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Always Note Down Your Blog Ideas
Before I share some ways I use to brainstorm blog ideas, here is one important tip:
Whether it’s a physical notebook from Etsy or a document in the cloud, do make it a habit to write down your blog ideas.
You can also use a note-taking app (like Google Drive which includes Docs and Sheets) or just note down in your phone while on the go.
The key is to keep building this solid blog content bank.
So even if you encounter writer’s block, you can always rely on this bank and get ideas for your next blog post.
For instance, I list down broad ideas in Google Sheets but elaborate them further in my Evernote. Book cover and google analytics are some topics I want to blog about. But I develop these ideas further by creating a new note in Evernote about the blog post outline with bullet points. And thus, this is how my blog articles were born (eg. 10 Factors To Look Out For When Hiring A Book Cover Designer and [10-Step Guide] How To Set Up Google Analytics On Your Business Website).
11 Ways To Brainstorm Blog Ideas
There are many ways to brainstorm blog ideas. Here are just some ways that I use (feel free to add more!):
Stay Up-To-Date With Industry News
Obviously, you’ll have to keep abreast of industry news. You need to be in the know of the latest updates, trends, changes etc.
You can start by reading your local newspapers and following certain topics, such as beauty, fashion, travel, technology.
Or if there are magazines that revolve around your industry, you can read those too. It’s also a good chance to find out what your competitors are doing (whether they’re launching a new product or service or having a sale based on the advertisements in those magazines or newspapers).
Try to follow at least one industry leader’s blog. But of course, if you subscribe to more industry leaders’ blogs, you will gain more knowledge. These experts might discuss their opinions on various trends, provide in-depth insights or share their tips and strategies.
By reading their blogs, you might get inspired and have some ideas for your own blog. Or if there’s something you agree or disagree with, you can consider making that into a blog article. For instance, I read Lindsay Buroker’s article and that’s how I know about the multi-book launch strategy. This spurred me to write an article about multi-book launch vs stagger book launch.
Reading books about related topics is another way to get blog ideas. These books might change the way you think or feel about something. Or even inspire you to take action.
You can then write a book review or recommend this book in your blog articles. Or mention how the book had inspired you to write this specific blog article.
Watch Videos, Attend Webinars & Listen To Podcasts
Watch Ted Talks, attend webinars and listen to podcasts by industry experts. Again, these leaders will share analysis and insights. Depending on the topic, you might master a skill or learn proven tips and strategies.
Your blog can also showcase the top 3 key takeaways from these videos, webinars and podcasts.
Get Google To Alert You About Interesting New Content Based On Your Queries
Google Alerts is a tool to monitor the web for interesting new content.
When you create an alert, you will receive emails about new results for a topic, industry or keyword you indicated.
For example, I have a weekly digest on copywriting, PPC tips, email marketing and more.
Simply head over to Google Alerts then enter the content that you want to receive alerts about.
You can click on Show options to change the settings:
- How often you get notifications
- Your language
- The type of results you want to see
Draw Mind Maps
Grab a piece of paper and write your blog topic right smack in the middle. Then, let your mind wander and jot down every concept that comes to mind.
The key is to freely explore ideas, without being limited by what you know or don’t know.
Let’s say, you wrote about a concept that you’ve heard of but has no knowledge of. This new blog article could be a chance to do in-depth research and share what you’ve learned (plus, your opinion of course).
In addition to being a content creator, I’m sure you’re also a content curator where you post some content from your blog as well as content from other sites.
Take a look at the tweets and pins you’ve shared. Scroll through your Facebook newsfeed.
Is there any interesting content that caught your attention?
You can consider crafting articles revolving around the same topic. Or write about similar topics.
The point is to utilize the content sharing platforms that you’ve already signed up.
Leverage Keyword Tools
Why not tap into Google’s free keyword research tool, Google Keyword Planner?
When you create an AdWords account (even if you don’t run any campaign), you can use the Keyword Planner to discover new keyword ideas as well as search volume and forecasts.
For instance, if you type ‘marketing’, you’ll get results like these:
You can also tap into other keyword research tools like KWFinder which lists some long tail keywords and metrics like SEO difficulty.
AnswerThePublic is another free site that consolidates the auto-suggest results from Google and Bing.
Check out my article on keyword research tips~
Discover Trending Searches With Google Trends
Google Trends analyzes top search queries in Google Search across various regions and languages. It also includes visual charts that compare search volume.
If you’re thinking to write a blog post about current events, this would be your go-to tool. But of course, you’ll need to finish that article ASAP before the trend dies down and no one searches for it anymore.
Tap Into Q&A: Answering Questions With Your Blog
How-to guides and tutorials are some popular types of blog posts. You can include this type of articles in your blog too.
But first, use one of these ways to get the burning questions:
Examine Quora & Reddit
Designed as a platform to ask questions and connect with people who provide unique insights and quality answers, Quora is one site to get blog ideas from.
Reddit is another discussion site where people upvote and downvote posts. You can then craft an article based on popular posts.
Both sites are great places to gather interesting ideas and to find out hot questions.
Analyze Your Google Search Console Queries
Google Search Console, a free service by Google, helps monitor and maintain your site’s presence in Google Search results.
If you have Google Search Console installed on your website, you will be able to access this search analytics report that lists all search queries.
This is super useful because you get data about what terms people are searching for that caused your site to appear in the results. You might consider creating a new blog post that revolves around these specific search terms.
Turn To Your Fans
Now, head over to your inbox and blog.
Did you receive any emails about questions that your customers have? Did your readers comment about the troubles they faced?
Well, everything they say is valuable. In fact, your fans are your best resource to find out interesting content that people want to know!
Based on their questions, you can then write a blog post that addresses each specific problem.
Or you could always simply ask them whether there’s any topic they would like to know more about~
Look At Your Own Processes & Activities
Closely examine what you do every day. These routine tasks might be mundane to you. But it might be interesting to your readers.
Take me for instance, I self-edit my own fiction. Although I understand that everyone has their unique way of editing their stories (some might focus on characterization while others might focus on worldbuilding), I still share about my editing process. Just like how I’m interested in how other authors edit their manuscripts, I’m sure there are people who are curious about my editing process too.
Your processes and activities aren’t limited to everyday tasks. It could be tasks that are done monthly, quarterly or annually. Or even one-time tasks that are crucial to your business.
Now It’s Your Turn
How do you brainstorm for blog ideas? Are there any tools, software or sites that you use?