Help! I’m Out of Blog Post Ideas!

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Fresh Ideas to Spark Your Blogging Mojo


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Has writing for your blog become a dreaded chore? Feeling left behind while your blogging competitors are passing you in the SEO race to the top of the search results? Are your old blog posts gathering dust while you sweat over what to write about next?

What you need is a new way of looking at a well-traveled road! 

Recently, Arment Dietrich, Inc.’s Gini Dietrich shared 10 Content Ideas that Generate Comments and Shares that got my creative juices flowing again.


I’ll add a few more blog post ideas to Gini’s list:

1) Interviews with people your target audience would like to hear from.

Our target audience is brands, nonprofits, and businesses who want to use blogging and social media to get their message out to their own audiences online, so we’ve been publishing an interview series with brands using social media for marketing. So far, we’ve interviewed Cedar Poirier of Newport Naked, Becky DiStefano of Haute Tags, and Jon Buscall of Jontus Media, with more on the way.

Who would your audience want to hear from?

2) Reviews of books, products, or tools that would help your target audience.

Editor and copywriter Suzanne McDonald (Newport Interactive Marketers) was doing video book reviews at one time, and inviting a new co-host for each one. To see her video review of Rawn Shah’s “Social Networking for Business,” this one with co-host and travel blogger Priscilla Pilon (Weekend in Paris), check out 6 Great Tips for Using Book Reviews to Get More Traffic.

What can you review for your audience?

3) A roundup of voices on some topic of interest to your audience.

A tip of the hat to Adam Toporek and Kaarina Dillabough for this idea! See Adam’s “What Is Customer Service?” and Kaarina’s “Money, Marketing and Monkey Business – The Alphabet Series Continues”. Adam and Kaarina put a call out to their audience members asking for input on specific topics, and put together blog posts featuring their favorites. What a great way to get others sharing your content!

What fun topic can you gather a crowd around?

4) A Twitter Chat summary about a topic of interest to your audience.

Copywriters Shakirah Dawud (Deliberate Ink) and Michelle Baker (Corporate Writing Pro) hosted a Twitter Chat for people who write for business audiences. Each wrote a follow-up blog post about the Twitter Chat: Shakirah wrote “Who To Write To When Everyone’s Reading,” and Michelle wrote “Tough Crowd? How to Write Straight to Your Reader.” Each post rounded up remarks from Chat participants, naming names and including links. Guess who drove traffic to Shakirah’s and Michelle’s blogs?

What relevant-to-your-audience topic can you host a Twitter Chat around? Or, what relevant-to-your-audience Twitter Chat can you attend and then write about?

Brainstorm! Share your own ideas for interesting twists on the old-fashioned blog post in the comments!


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  1. jayme soulati06-17-12

    Inspiration comes for me from reading. A headline catches my eye in the a.m., and off I go incorporating fact and opinion into what usually is a blog post about nothing too much.

    The way to differentiate is to never let another’s writings influence yours; find your own creative muse and stick with it. That way, your ideas are forever fresh.

    Perhaps you’re sparked by something you read on Spin Sucks; I get that, as it’s a great community for inspiration, but sit on tht idea awhile and gel with it. Sparks fly when you least expect it.

    Do you keep a list somewhere? Of blog ideas and topics? I have tried to but always misplace my list — yeah, yeah, I know, I’m supposed to be writing on the iPhone or something.

    Point being…you never know when an idea strikes you, so take a breather from writings and mojo will flow.

  2. Rachel Minihan04-25-12

    Michelle – great article, because I know that coming up with content is a tough one! I’d add lists of tips and tricks: “Top 10 Ways to do x.” Those are always a hit.

    Also, picture collections too – selling houses? Let’s see photos of the area in which you work. Or even narrow it more – “area parks”, “Our Town’s Schools”, etc. Own a restaurant – maybe today’s special?

    And, of course, I’m biased towards Blog Joggers, which is an email service I provide to businesses, delivering targeted blog topics to them each week. (Thanks for letting me mention it!)

    • Michelle Quillin04-25-12

      Rachel, thanks for stopping in! The photo collection idea is an excellent one, especially with the Pinterest craze! I’ve been experimenting with blog post images that might attract “pinners,” so now you’ve got me brainstorming about whole collections! I have a great idea….

      I thought folks here would love to check out Blog Joggers. Such a great way to spark those creative juices every week!

  3. Erica Allison04-19-12

    More times than not, I draw on the experiences I have with clients and projects – what worked, what didn’t, what can my target audience learn from it? I have to be careful not to share specific names, but I can and do share specific lessons learned.

    The way I see it, the questions my clients and prospects are asking already are the same questions other business owners have now.

    As always, I love interviews – esp video. I did a brief series (2 Questions with a CEO) where I interviewed business owners and asked them what keeps them up at night and what gets them up in the morning? I need to pick it back up because it generated a LOT of interest. Thanks for the reminder!

    • Michelle Quillin04-19-12

      Erica, you’re using stories, then! Everyone loves stories. We can relate to them.

      I’m very interested in the video series you just described. I want to know what keeps others up at night! Maybe dig some out of the archives for us? Please?

  4. Gini Dietrich04-19-12

    I’d add to your interview section to them on video. People LOVE that. And, just in case no one clicks on the list of 10 you so generously linked to here, the very best way to generate comments and shares is through the list. It kind of makes me nuts because they’re not very smart posts, but they work really, really well.

    • Michelle Quillin04-19-12

      Gini, thanks for coming over! I’m honored.

      List posts appeal to those of us with super-short attention spans, or folks who are so busy and overwhelmed with info, they need it in short bite-sized chunks. (Infographics, anyone?)

      I’d also add that transcripts really help people (like me) who have trouble focusing when content is delivered via video or podcasts. I have an enormously difficult time giving a video my full, focused attention unless it’s VERY short. Yet I love Andrew Warner’s video interviews over on Mixergy! I watch them in pieces, and I always, always read the transcripts. Sometimes, I read them first.

  5. Adam04-18-12

    Thanks for the hat tip Michelle! You know that post is the most successful post we’ve done on the site. It took a lot of hours to pull off, but it has been well worth the investment. The traffic, even after the publication window, has been great, but even more, the content is just killer because we had so many incredible contributions from experts.

    I highly recommend the roundup idea to any blogger. But warning, you have to really be ready for commitment to keep up with Kaarina and her alphabet series! :)

    • Michelle Quillin04-19-12

      Adam, we were thrilled to be invited! I’m glad you get so much traffic from that post.

      I love your new, narrowed-down niche — Customer Service fits you, and you’re excellent at it. Have I told you that yet today? ;)

  6. Kaarina Dillabough04-18-12

    Thanks for mentioning my alphabet series Michelle. It’s garnered lots of input and discussion, and I love that people not only provide words, but often phrases and little stories as well. And of course there are those that really like to make me work hard, by providing words that have NOTHING to do with business, and I have to find a way to thread them into a business post.

    Great additions here. Thanks! Kaarina

    • Michelle Quillin04-19-12

      Kaarina, do you accept every single entry, then? You do a great job of making them fit. ;)

  7. Liz04-18-12

    Love #4, very creative :-)

    Interviews are also one of my favorites. They always bring lots of comments and interest.

    Michelle, I’m a big biography fan as well. When I have the time to curl up with a good book, it’s almost always a biography :-)

    Liz

    • Michelle Quillin04-19-12

      Thanks for stopping in, Liz!

      Kathie Manchester (Rhode Island Blood Center) just shared an excellent resource for Twitter Chats. It’s an interactive, editable spreadsheet online with nearly 600 (as of this moment) Twitter Chats on every topic under the sun! Some of these may not be taking place anymore, but that’s easy to find out using the hashtags provided in the spreadsheet, or contacting the moderators via Twitter (also provided).

      Check it out here: http://bit.ly/HTQP99

  8. Shakirah Dawud04-18-12

    I need to do a few interviews and reviews myself–my last interiew was months ago, and I can’t remember when last I did a review. Thanks for the reminder, and thanks for sharing the Tweetchat summary–it may have seemed like a no-brainer to write about it, but I’m sure there will be times when it’s a blog saver!

    • Michelle Quillin04-19-12

      I think anyone who even attends a Twitter Chat has instant blog fodder, as long as the topic is relevant to what their target audience is interested in or needs. For example, if I attend a Twitter Chat on Customer Service, I can easily put together a summary or a list post, with links to the participants I’m quoting. Images can be screenshots of the Twitter replies themselves, with the images linked to the participants’ websites or Twitter profiles. Everyone loves to see their name in print, especially in a positive, affirming context, and even more so when the post drives traffic to their own websites!

      Thanks for the Twitter Chat summary idea, Shakirah!

  9. Gia Saulnier04-18-12

    I try to do at least a blog post once a week on http://www.renperfmerch.blogspot.com but that’s when I get the interviews from other people.
    My other blogs, since they just reflect our faire(s) I try to post once a month (up until the event) to promote either a performer or merchant that will be there.
    Those blogs are: http://www.watervillevalleyrenfaire.wordpress.com and http://www.abbadiamarefestival.wordpress.com
    On my personal blog? I just post when I can, as no one really subscribes to that one, but when I do, I usually cross post from others that I’ve done or write about our updates.

    • Michelle Quillin04-18-12

      I love interviews, Gia! Probably my favorite blog post style of all. I’m a documentary freak, never miss an episode of 60 Minutes, and read biographies for fun. That’s why the Twitter Chat and Roundup posts attract my attention, too.

      Thanks for popping in!

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