Have you already read a million blog posts about blog posts? Copy and paste, SEO-friendly lists of ideas?
Me, too. Here are three good, helpful posts like that:
32 of the most popular blog post ideas
New year blog post ideas
70+ ideas for any blog’s editorial calendar
This post will not give you copy and paste titles. This is not where I suggest starting a meme-worthy post series like “what’s in your purse?”
(Not because I don’t want to know what’s in your purse because I totally do. What’s your stance on those round chapstick ball things?)
These are more start-of-the-brainstorming-session, open-to-your-interpretation suggestions. They’re a great place to start when you’re sitting down to plan out next month’s content.
With that said, here are five questions to ask yourself when you’re filling in that editorial calendar.
Am I working on any projects or offerings that I want to build buzz for? Can I give my readers a sneak peek of any upcoming stuff?
If you’re working on a brunch cookbook, write a post about the magic of brunch, link to your favorite brunchy recipes, tell people you’re working on the book, and tell them they can join your list so they’ll be the first to know when it comes out.
If you’re writing an ebook about getting over a break up, share a story about one of your breakups, what you learned from it, tell readers what you’re working on, and invite them to join your list. You get the idea!
Am I trying to grow my Twitter/Instagram/Pinterest followers this month?
Think about what you can write that pairs nicely with each of those platforms. If you’re trying to grow your Instagram following, do a roundup of Instagrammers you think people should follow (Kaelah does a nice job of this). @mention them so they know you’re talking about them and remind your readers that they can follow you.
If you’re trying to grow your Pinterest following, create content that relates to some of your best, most popular boards. Tell readers if they like this, then they’ll really love your Pinterest board on the same topic. (P.S. I have a whole board of blogging tips.)
Is there anything happening this time of year that’s particularly important to my readers and clients?
Do your readers care that it’s tax season? That it’s New York Fashion Week? The shoulder travel season in Europe? Chinese New Year?
Think about the events that matter to your people and write content that helps them prepare and enjoy those events. During college graduation season I wrote about how to be a grown-ass woman and during the holiday shopping season I wrote about how to prepare your shop for a deluge of sales and customers.
Have there been any Big Deal developments in my industry or community that I should talk about?
What does it mean for your clients and readers when Facebook changes their policies? When gay marriage becomes legal? When there’s a polar vortex? When Apple releases a new phone? When New York makes Airbnb illegal?
I’m sure you stay up to date on the news and big developments in your industry and I’m sure you’ve got capital O Opinions. Share those with your readers! And if the developments are challenging or troubling, share any ideas about how to deal with them.
Have there been any big changes (good or bad, big or small) in my life that lead to epiphanies that would help my readers + clients?
Of course, if you blog exclusively about food it might be a bit weird to blog about your cat-ownership realizations. But most epiphanies aren’t industry-specific! I mean, I wrote about the business lessons I learned from creating a cat calendar.
Readers love to learn more about you and your life; they’ll probably enjoy hearing more about you while learning something useful.
What do you do when you’re drawing a blog post inspiration blank? I’d love to hear your solutions in the comments!
P.S. These are the questions I ask my clients for my new Blog In A Box offering. I’ve actually quietly been offering this for four months but it’s been so successful I only just now had the time to write the sales page!
photo via death to stock photo // cc
Just getting back to blogging after many years away… I’m having a hard time finding my “voice” when it comes to blogging! Don’t wanna sound “sales-y”… or preachy.
However, I’m trying to take inspiration from daily things…. taking photos of little daily occurrences that might spark blog posts. That has been helping me lately, especially since I’m new to this and am just starting out!
Thanks for these brainstorming ideas! Thing like this are a HUGE help!
I don’t do much blog writing, but I do a lot of fiction writing. Whenever those ideas start to dry up, I’ll go back and re-read pieces that I was particularly proud of. It’s a great way to get the creative juices flowing again!
Also, I personally love when bloggers give updates. If I’m a dedicated reader, I love knowing how this has changed or how that turned out. If I’m catching the boat a little late, it leads me back into their archive to get the beginning of the story too!
I bought a few of those ball chapsticks for the first time , and I’m excited to see what happens as they get used up! Will the ball just get smaller and smaller? Will it lose structural integrity? Will it become some sort of weird gross chunky lipgloss pot? /offtopic
it’s WEIRD. mine ended up just being a flat piece of chapstick that I’d kiss every time my lips felt dry. And when I first got them my coworker thought I was eating a hardboiled egg every 2 hours lol!
Ooooohhh great idea with the social media growth posts, I might do that with Instagram!
In other news I got so many chapstick egg things in my stocking this year they’re all over the place!!
They really are the perfect stocking stuffer. And you KNOW everybody’s going to get them in their Easter baskets!
Thank you so much for featuring my 70+ ideas post! ‘m loving your tips, especially the one about increasing your social media followings and using that as inspiration for post ideas. I’m definitely going to start incorporating that into my editorial calendar.
A chapstick ball? Seriously?! How big is it? Are we talking marble or tennis ball? Also, very cool and super helpful post. Thanks for that.
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