As you may already know, article marketing (which involves writing articles for your newsletter and/or blog) can be a great way to gain exposure and attract the interest of clients. In fact, a recent HubSpot survey found that businesses who regularly publish blog posts on their websites enjoy 67% more leads than those who aren’t generating fresh content. (And we all know that more leads can quickly translate into more clients for your products and services – woo-hoo!) Side note: while your articles can be used on your newsletter or your blog (or, preferably, both!), for the purpose of today’s article we’ll focus on writing blogs.
But the question of the hour is: how on earth do you come up with fresh blog post ideas week after week or month after month? The very thought can send you spiraling into procrastination mode and might even be enough to turn you off the idea of writing blogs for good.
Hold your horses, cowgirl (or cowboy :))! Before you throw in the towel, let’s talk about 5 great ways to brainstorm fresh blog post ideas to help you easily maintain your article writing efforts. If you set a timer for one hour and really, seriously go through each of these methods for finding fresh blog post ideas (or even if you tackle just a few), you’d be hard pressed NOT to come up with at least 24 fresh blog post ideas. Plenty to write one great blog post each week for the next 6 months…and start to generate a steady flow of traffic to your website. Okay, ready? Let’s go!
Blog Post Idea Generator # 1: Make a list of Frequently Asked Questions. Think about any questions or objections that your prospects might have that could be stopping them from working with you. One big, somewhat universal question would be around the topic of money. They might wonder how much it costs to ___fill in the blank___ (ie. hire a business coach, have their house professionally painted, etc.). This uncertainty can be enough to keep them from taking the next step in working with you, because they might be convinced that it’s out of their budget – when in reality you might have options that are surprisingly affordable. Don’t let them talk themselves out of working with you based on unanswered questions – put them out there and ease their uncertainties right off the bat.
Blog Post Idea Generator #2: Uncover hot topics people are already discussing. With the increasing popularity of Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and other social networking platforms, your ideal peeps are out there right now asking questions and talking about their challenges – and practically handing you topic ideas on a silver platter. All you have to do is find where they’re “hanging out” and scroll through a few posts to find out what they’re struggling with – or perhaps what goals they’re trying to reach – in this moment. Presto, instant article ideas.
Blog Post Idea Generator #3: Ask yourself how your opinions in your area of expertise might be unique or even controversial. Do you do things differently than everyone else in your industry? Perhaps you disagree with widely-held beliefs of how things should be done. For example, maybe you’re a healer who offers natural treatments for common ailments that you’ve seen work over and over again, without the side affects of modern medications. The possibilities there are endless, such as: “3 Diabetes Treatment Alternatives that Don’t Require Sticking Yourself with a Needle” or “How to Cure Athlete’s Foot without Stinky, Sticky Ointments.” (Let it be said that I know nothing about alternative treatments for diabetes or athlete’s foot, if they even exist. These are just example to help get the wheels turning. Okay, moving on!)
Blog Post Idea Generator #4: Get inspiration from local publications and/or trade magazines. Many pros assume that because they stay up on the latest and greatest trends in their industry that their clientele must be hip too, right? Wrong. Let’s say you’re a parenting coach based out of New York City who serves clients across the globe. You subscribe to a variety of general and industry-specific publications to keep your finger on the pulse of what’s working now to help your clients be better parents. Just because YOU know what’s up doesn’t mean that THEY know what’s up. In fact, they probably don’t. That’s why they’re coming to you for help. And because you most likely naturally weed through the stacks of information to pick out the nuggets of gold, you can easily serve as their source for primo info, saving them tons of time and headaches of trying to figure it out on their own. After all, you’re the expert, right? (And on a side note, if you don’t currently subscribe to local publications and trade magazines, it’s not too late to start. Many of them even publish their info online for easy consumption. If you have a smartphone, check out apps that feed fresh articles from your chosen sources directly to your fingertips. One such resource is called feedly, and you can sign up free and get updates on your computer or smartphone. It’s a beautiful thing, and can serve as a constant source of fresh content ideas.)
Blog Post Idea Generator #5: ‘Fess up. Make a list of what hasn’t worked for you/your clients and share those tidbits, along with lessons learned along the way. Many folks shy away from such brutal honesty because they’re afraid it will shoot their credibility in the foot. Quite the contrary. Sharing your “weaknesses” makes you seem more human and relatable, plus it actually makes you seem MORE knowledgeable because you’ve been down in the trenches and come out (relatively) unscathed. Which sends the subconscious message that you can help them out of tough spots too. Readers will appreciate your honesty and love you all the more for it. (And those who don’t will walk away, saving you from working with folks who are ungrateful or otherwise pains in the you-know-what.)
The bottom line, and what I really hope you’ll take away from this article, is that you don’t have to have all the answers yourself, or pull blog post ideas out of thin air in order to write great articles. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel. It’s been said that there are no original ideas, there are only original people. There are awesome article ideas all around you. Don’t be afraid to get inspiration from others, and then put your uniquely splendiferous spin on your article to really make it your own.
Looking for even more inspiration, or wondering how to actually write the darn article once you’ve got a fantastic topic? Then check out the 60-Minute Article Template package which contains 29 ways to find a hot topic, plus a fill-in-the-blanks template for writing compelling articles, 17 irresistible article title formulas, and tons more. Click here to learn more about this time-saving template package.
About the Author
Tammi Metzler, founder of The Write Associate, shows entrepreneurs how to effectively position and promote their services online so that website visitors instantly “get” what they do and eagerly say YES to their free and paid offerings. To learn more about writing a blog that magnetically attracts your ideal peeps, check out the virtual workshop called the Write Client-Attracting Articles in an Hour Challenge. I’ll hook you up with everything you need to write biz-boosting articles that magnetically attract your ideal clients, including instructions, samples, and guidance on how to choose fresh, hot topics month after month; how to write attention-grabbing titles that get your articles noticed by your ideal peeps; my 5-step, 60-minute blueprint for writing the body of your article in a way that provides value to readers while establishing your expertise and helping to convert interested prospects into paying clients; 12 ways to re-use each article so that it drives multiple streams of steady, targeted traffic to your website (with little to no extra work on your part); and, as they say, lots more. 🙂 Visit http://WriteAssociate.com/Write-Your-Articles/ to learn more and register now.