When it comes to content marketing and blogging the place that people often get stuck is in writing posts or articles.
“I don’t know what to write about!” is something I hear often, and have said myself over the years.
It’s all too common to feel that you have nothing new to say, that no one is going to listen to you, or should listen to you.
The facts are much different. Here are a few facts that might help, and then my five article starter suggestions.
- People need information.
- People don’t care where they get the information, just that it helps them.
- If you provide information that helps people they will like you, trust you and buy from you.
- You do not need to have personal experience in a field to be of service to readers.
If you are stuck on what to write about, try using these five idea starters. I find having idea generators like this hanging around very helpful indeed. In fact, I have about 100 of them!
Idea Starter #1 – Frequently Asked Questions
This is one of the easiest ways to write articles, reports or blog posts. The reason it’s easy is that you don’t have to do the research. You just need to “research the research” and share what you find.
Of course, never copy anyone else’s work and never violate copyright laws. But restating what you find online can work if you do it with integrity.
That simply means giving credit where credit is due (to the source) and not using all of anyone’s work but rather curating it.
When you use another person’s content you are curating, so give them credit and don’t put their work under your name.
That said, here are some places to look for Frequently Asked Questions material.
- Forums in your niche.
- Google searches.
- Amazon – Look for books and “how to” guides.
- Blogs – Blog posts and articles can be great sources of content to curate.
- Wikipedia – Tons of pre-done research.
- Twitter – You can follow leaders and ask them for their tips.
- Youtube – At this writing, 100 hours of video are uploaded every minute of every day. Content galore!
Feel free to link to the resources from which you find the best material. It’s good form, the right thing to do and just might get you a link back!
Idea Starter #2 – Definitions
Many industries are chock full of confusing jargon. Did you know what an “autoresponder” was before coming online? Me either.
Putting together a list of terms, and sharing some insight into what they mean and why it’s good to know them, makes a great blog post, article or even lead magnet!
And gathering this information is easy as pie. Google will help most here.
Idea Starter #3 – Avoiding Mistakes
Articles and posts about common mistakes and how to avoid them are wildly popular. Once again, gathering this material is easy to do.
Forums help most here.
Ask a “what should I avoid” question as a newbie and make note of the answers. Filter that research through a little searching, and perhaps your own experience, and presto you’ve got a great article.
Idea Starter #4 – 10 Minute Solutions
If you can pose a solution to a problem in a “1o minute” wrapper you will find that readers will love you and your material.
Everyone is busy and none of us think we have “spare time”. I say we don’t think that because we actually all have the same 24 hours in a day. But that’s another article! 🙂
Here’s how to use the “10 minute” method.
Think of a solution you can write about, or research one. Then break that solution down into a series of steps. Provide the barest series of steps possible but make sure the job still gets done.
Then do the process and time yourself.
If you can do it in 10 minutes you can write your “10 minute” article with integrity.
Idea Starter #5 – Resources
Lists of resources are another wildly popular topic. Resource guides make a great lead magnet, but they make great article content too.
People believe in tools. They want to know about tools. Most people secretly believe that the right tool is going to solve their problem.
In many cases, they are right.
So make a list of tools specific to your niche and write an article (or articles!) about it.
Some example topics might be …
- The most cost effective autoresponders.
- 10 abs programs that really work.
- The three apps you need to make killer videos.
You get the idea. People love lists. They love resources. Combine those two and write a great post and they will love you!
I love using checklists and templates. I hope these five idea starters are helpful to you in your blog posting/article writing practice.
Using them will save you time. And saving time is a beautiful thing indeed!