In yesterday’s post, we talked about blogger’s block, and I gave out a couple of examples of how you can generate ideas for new blog posts… I thought I’d give you a couple more ideas! (for good measure!)
Browse Old Magazines - If you’re in an industry that’s large enough to have magazines, subscribe to as many of the magazines in your field as you can.
In a few months, you should have a big stack of magazines that you can use as idea fodder. Also, many public libraries keep archived copies of newspapers and magazines. You can literally browse magazines from months or even years ago for free at many major libraries.
Go through these old magazines and look for ideas. Look for things they covered that nobody on the internet is covering.
Print articles often involve a lot more research to write than online content. Print content requires sources, quotes, statistics, verification, etc that online content just doesn’t need.
The print world and the internet world are quite different. That’s why it often pays to look in the offline world for inspiration for your online content.
Google Alerts - Google Alerts (http://www.google.com/alerts) is a free online system that will alert you by email whenever certain keywords or phrases appear in blogs or news articles. You can use Google Alerts to come up with topics in one or two ways.
First, you can use it as a constant stream of ideas. Just put relatively broad ideas in Google Alerts and set it to email you once a day. Every day, browse through the articles and see what ideas you come up with.
Another way to use Google Alerts is to use it to write cutting edge, timely articles. Use it to monitor your industry. Anytime something changes, anytime breaking news hits the net, anytime something controversial happens, you want to publish a piece of content within hours.
Often time’s the first person to publish content about something is the one who gets all the traffic.
Ask Questions - If you’re having trouble coming up with new ideas, why not have your audience do it for you instead?
A lot of authors find that their best blog posts actually come from their audience rather than from their own minds. After all, if you’re trying to create content that your audience loves, who better to guide you than your audience?
Don’t make the mistake of thinking you know what your audience wants without asking. Also don’t make the mistake of thinking that what you want to express is always what your audience wants to know about.
Ask. Ask for questions and make blog posts out of them.
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