Coming up with blog ideas can be exhausting. No matter how many ideas you come up with at one time, you’ll eventually run out. Other times, you’ll have a list of several ideas but you won’t really want to write about any of the ideas you have written down.
When either situation happens, you’ll need a few handy ways to get inspiration. Here are a few tips to get your creative juices flowing:
Browse other websites: As long as you aren’t stealing content, there’s no reason you can’t get inspiration from someone else’s blog. Would it be better to have an original idea? Sure. But, you can take a topic you read about elsewhere and put your own spin on it or look at it from a different angle.
You may also consider linking to other websites. If you have a topic that you don’t have time to write about you can include a list of links to other blogs where your readers can find out more information. This is a good practice because eventually other bloggers will start linking your site as well.
Industry news: You should be following at least two or three industry related websites. You’ll not only be able to keep up with trends and regulations you’ll also be able to glean a lot of ideas for blog posts. Timely posts that relate to a current issue are particularly affective in getting an audience to stop and read.
Skim the newspapers, newsletters and trade magazines to find ideas to target on your blog posts. These sites make excellent fodder for Facebook posts and tweets as well.
Hit the library: Odd as this sounds, I’ve found more than one idea from reading and skimming through books related to topics that I have to write about. It may seem old fashioned, since you can get so much information online, to actually do research in a library, but there are a plethora of new ideas and old ideas that can be refreshed.
Emails, comments and criticism: One of the best places to get ideas is from your customers. Take a look at company reviews, letters and emails. Make a note of comments from a customer that could be used for a blog topic later. When you address customer concerns in a blog post you aren’t only getting your blog obligations out of the way, you’re showing your customers that you are listening to them.
Check around the office: When you are fresh out of ideas, get up and take a walk. Walk slowly around your business, through every single room. Be sure to carry a pencil and paper with you. Look at the walls, check out the stock, and peek in on any employees. Ask yourself what your customers need to know about. As you look around you may find the oddest things inspire blog topics. Perhaps an employee has found a unique way to use old product containers; this could inspire a blog post about recycling. Keep an open mind.
You can find ideas anywhere. It’s a good practice to always have a pencil and a notebook in your purse, back pocket or somewhere close by. Professional writers do this all the time because they know that inspiration can come at the oddest times, and it’s best to always be prepared when it strikes.
photo by: Steve and Sara