If you have a blog, you have to be on the prowl at all times for great post ideas. You want to be thinking about the topics that not only are what your visitors want to read about, but that engage them.
You do this by covering current topics of interest and make visitors want to read more. Then take the necessary time to craft an excellent article.
Writing is a Skill… and Challenge
Content creation is a challenge for every blog owner, from starting to established more prominent blogs alike. Creating content good content takes time and a well-thought-out approach.
You want to have a blog that gets bookmarked and, better yet, subscribes to. To accomplish this, you have to be exceptionally aware of how everything you read, see, or hear can be turned into an interesting blog post.
To do so requires you to be tapped into industry trends and current events. In particular, those that may impact the use of your product, service, or your customers who use them.
How to Collect Post Ideas
Some use their calendars; others take manual notes. In comparison, some carry a journal around to write down and inspiration when it hits them. Whatever works for you, find a system and use it.
Keep notes on what your customer ask about most.
Those questions are goldmines for future blog posts and your FAQ. From how-tos to more detailed studies or whitepapers, let your customers guide you on your topic priorities. Then, from the questions on your FAQ page, you can link to a more comprehensive and detailed answer on your blog.
I have a little red diary-type notebook that I have on my desk at all times. I know old-fashioned. But I love notebooks — and could probably collect them if I let myself. I love all the neat designs and how they feel in my hands! (Plus, I get to doodle!)
When I get even the slightest flash of a good idea, I write it down. Right then and there. If I don't, I know I'll get distracted, and the idea will be gone. There are notes apps on your phone you can use for this too.
Subscribe and read as many other bloggers in your area of focus.
Reading is how you keep up with trends and conversations. You'll undoubtedly run into post topics that you can quickly put your unique spin on or voice your opinion about.
I have a folder in my email program called “My Blogs” and then subfolders for each blog. When I get an email that notes something I want to address in a future post, I highlight that topic and then file it in the appropriate folder for when I have that all too familiar writer's block.
When you land on a blog with a topic that you want to expound upon, or better yet, add your little twist too, here again, create a bookmark folder in your browser. For example, my folder is called “Future Posts.” I then bookmark that post's page for future reference.
Many blogs have the option of emailing posts. In that case, you can email yourself a copy to be filed in your email program's blog folder. You can then refer to that folder when you write your fresh and original post on the topic.
Something I also do…
I'll login to my WordPress Admin panel and use that nifty Quick Draft widget on the homepage in your dashboard. I title it with my idea and then take quick notes about the direction I want to write about in the content area.
Don't see the Quick Draft Widget? Make sure you are on your Dashboard (left sidebar), then click the Screen Options tab — top right. Check the box to the left of Quick Draft. With this approach, I also have a collection of drafts I can draw upon for future posts.
Check out Google's AdWords Keyword Planner. Don't worry; you don't have to buy ads to use the tool. You can “see” what folks are searching for to add to your collection of topic ideas.
Login with your Google account credentials, click on the wrench icon top/right, then choose Keyword Planner. Next, you can query Google's database to find out what folks are searching for relative to your market and topic.
You'll be able to see the search volume and competitiveness by the PPC amounts. Then, click the Download button to download the info so you can refer to it at a later date.
Another fun site to get topic ideas is AnswerThePublic. Once you type in your keyword phrase, the site will display what folks are searching for.
Always Be Open to Potential Topics
It is a rare talent to sit at a keyboard, start typing away daily, day in and day out, and produce relevant quality posts * of interest. That's why having a collection of resources available that have already spurred your creative juices is the best approach.
You'll soon find you've grown a healthy archive of post ideas that will be available when you need them. Have writer's block? Open one of your resource folders.
When writing great posts, remember, first and foremost, to think about what your readers want to read about. Solve a problem. Make their life easier. Address their concerns. That's what matters.
By always having that radar on when you find these gems or have those incredible epiphanies, you will habitually jot them down, bookmark them, file them or draft them. You'll always have ideas at your fingertips to write about.
You'll save yourself a ton of time and make creating your posts more enjoyable for you and your readers alike.
At your service,