Even the most seasoned and inspired blogger will tell you, getting stuck for ideas happens to the best of us. Sometimes, try as we might, the words just don’t flow – and when that happens, dread can rear its ugly head.
Got bloggers’ block? Forgettaboutit. There’s really no such thing if you can push past the panic, dig deep, and just start writing about something – anything – until inspiration strikes.
Here are my 13 Magic Tricks to Try when you’re stuck for content ideas
- An oldie but a goodie, and for good reason. Start with a Google News search and check out industry news relevant to your business or area of expertise. If there’s something of interest, discuss it while offering your own unique perspective. Not only is this timely, but it can also help position you as an expert with new information to offer your audience.
- Ask yourself what you’ve learned recently. Chances are, if it’s new to you, it will be new to some of your readers as well. Offer a step-by-step tutorial, review or simple commentary.
- Check out the latest comments from your readers. What questions are they asking? What are they talking about? If a recent post sparked some debate or a lot of interest, why not add more value for your audience by building on the topic with more information?
- Put a question out to your social networks. Ask your fans and followers if they have a burning question in need of answering, or an issue they feel needs further exploration. Remember to link back to their comments and tweets for further engagement and social proof.
- Keep your eye on Twitter trending topics – locally and globally. There may be a hot topic that you can weigh in on, and adding timely posts once in a while is a great way of keeping your blog up to date.
- Don’t disregard the obvious. Throw in the occasional ‘for beginners’ post for those new to your blog or the subject matter. Sometimes getting back to basics can be an interesting refresher for longtime readers as well.
- Write a list. Choose a topic that is timely or will be of specific interest to your audience and create a Top 10 or 20 or 100 using short and snappy bullet points. People love to skim – and sometimes less really is more.
- Take a photo. A picture tells a thousand words, right? So convey a relevant message or share an interesting, funny or endearing snippet of information in an image.
- Want to get your readers more involved with comments? Post a photo and invite your readers to share their wittiest captions.
- Digging Vine? Upload one of your best six-second videos as a post, or create a clip dedicated to your business or blog elevator pitch… in mime, of course.
- Vlog. Turn your smartphone’s video camera or your web-cam on yourself and post a video blog on YouTube. Offer an introduction to you and your business or blog, an interesting tutorial, a review, a Letterman-style Top 10, or an all-out rant about an issue affecting your industry. Embed the video into your latest post and voila!
- What are your heroes talking about? Compile a must-read collection of your favourite posts for the week or month, linking back to all of the articles, posts, videos, podcasts, tweets and photos you think your audience would be mad to miss.
- Go back to some of your oldest posts and see what you were talking about waaaay back when. Is the information still relevant? Could it do with a refresh? If the theme or topic is still important and enough time has passed, why not write a follow up piece? Link back to your original post in your introduction to give the topic some context, and then give your readers the latest news and insights.
How do you induce inspiration when you’re feeling stuck for content ideas?