Jun 29, 2010

I Have a Blog! What Will I Say? 40 Great Blog Content Ideas

The problem is more common than you might think. Professionals and newbies alike often experience the dreaded writers block while sitting down to create their next blog post. More than anything else, the death of a blog is due to lack of content. A successful and healthy blog needs new posts at a minimum of once a week.
Here are 40 ideas to help keep the ideas flowing:

1. Lists – A Bloggers Best Friend

  • Create a complete list of your favorite posts. This will put your best information all in one place.
  • Create a comprehensive list of suppliers, required tools, places to visit, words to study, etc.
  • List the steps to perform a specific task.
  • List reasons to take action, or ways to accomplish specific objectives.
  • List five other blogs that you read, and why you read them. Likely, you can get these blogs to do the same with yours.

2. Reader Involvement

  • Ask readers to submit links to their favorite online resources (for your given niche). This will create a very useful resource for future readers, and likely for you too.
  • Run a poll and post the results.
  • Answer specific questions from readers. It's a great way to interact with individual readers, but likely others will have the same questions. It will help fill in holes in your content.
  • Ask for feedback on a specific problem or concern. You can pose a problem you are having, or one posed by a reader, and request feedback from your readers. Readers love to help, and share their experience.
  • Create a contest. Give away prizes for specific user involvement.

3. The Attraction of Opposites

  • Examine the pros and cons of an issue.
  • Contrast the various positions of an issue. Often there are many sides to each issue. Some issues are very controversial (politics and religion) while others are merely light hearted (favorite fabrics or type of video game software). Explain that it isn't simply a black and white issue.
  • Write a post for beginners. Think about what you would need to know, if you were just getting started in the industry. Write from that perspective.
  • Write a post for experts. Apply your knowledge to a specific point, and help advanced users to accomplish a challenging task, or to understand a complex concept.
  • Profile the best and the worst of something.

4. Idea Stimulus

  • Visit a bookstore, and read the book cover of a related topic. Or an unrelated topic.
  • Use a dictionary or thesaurus to look up relevant industry terms, and use newly generated ideas. Synonyms and explanations of commonly used words might get the creative sparks flying.
  • Keep an idea notebook: A small notepad in your back pocket or purse can absorb all the great ideas you're generating while walking the dog, riding the bus, or waiting in line for groceries.
  • Read blogs in a category opposite to yours. Run an automotive blog? Why not visit a family travel blog? Or maybe you write for a fashion blog? Spend some time on a blog for gourmet food. By getting out of your industry, ideas will begin to flow.
  • Write a "for dummies" post.

5. Current Events

  • Write about current events, and their effect on your niche. Maybe new government policies, the failure or success of a large company in your industry, or changing attitudes.
  • Interview relevant people in the news
  • Discuss a popular service or product and why it's popular
  • Turn on the news and see what's happening. Sometimes 10 minutes of the evening news is all that's needed to get the ideas flowing.
  • Get away from your desk. Visit a park, a movie theatre or even a walk in the woods. Get out of the cave and enjoy some sunlight. Your pent up ideas will begin to surface.

6. Be Opinionated

  • Write a critical review of another blog or blog post. Can be constructive or flaming.
  • Create a strongly opinionated post.
  • Respond to general criticism of your industry. Maybe a news program put your industry in a bad light. Respond to this in your blog, showing what else is involved.
  • Respond to direct criticism of your blog. Its impossible to run a blog and not offend someone sometime. Maybe you goofed in a previous post, you can acknowledge and apologize. Or maybe you feel that the criticism is not justified and you can defend your position with more facts.
  • What really bugs me? Most likely things that bug you will bug other people too. Address these points and offer some insight.

7. Reviews

  • Connect with bloggers in your niche and review each others blogs.
  • Review complementary service providers. Help your readers sort through the options available to them.
  • How to use a product/service in an unusual way.
  • Address a common myth and explain if its fact or fiction.
  • Review your blogs performance and display the results.

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