You know many different ways to find ideas for your next blog post … the comments on your previous blog posts; mining social media sites like twitter, Facebook, Digg and delicious; searching through related forums and question/answer sites; other blogs in your niche and their comments – the list could just go on.
But some days, you just feel a little blah, and none of these usual sources of ideas seem to cut it. No amount of caffeine seems to help improve the situation.
No matter how many times you wrack your brain, or how many times you’ve sat in front of your computer screen and prayed for inspiration, you just cannot seem to come up with a blog topic that will keep your readers interested. You need something new, something unconventional, something that will crush it. Maybe it’s time to go back in time and do what Shakespeare probably did when he needed some ideas.
Read a Book
Much like watching a movie to get blogging ideas, reading a book can provide you with tons of blogging ideas. It doesn’t matter if you’re reading a Shakespeare play, a modern take on an old classic, or a bodice ripper, you can find plenty of ways to put a 180 degree spin on the regular topics you usually write about. Blogging is a money making idea that can easily flow from what you read to what you write…to what others will read. Harry Potter, Moby Dick, Catcher in the Rye, Bad Moon Rising, and other super famous books were written to entertain, and you can use your love (or hate) for a book to spark off a new conversation on your own blog. This illustrative post on Mind Meister inspired by Dale Carnegies popular book “How to Win Friends & Influence People” has over 150,000 views via stumbleupon alone – just imagine how much the overall traffic should be!
In addition to using books to generate ideas, you could also just write a book review of the new best seller in your niche, or a classic that never went out of fashion, to provide some new avenues for your blog readers to explore. Many of the popular blogs use this technique – for instance check out the book reviews on the two most popular personal finance blogs The Simple Dollar and Get Rich Slowly to pick up some pointers on how to do it the right way.
Go shopping either as a means to just relax (Yes, to all you men out there, I used “relax” and “shopping” in the same sentence – that’s jus how we women are :)) or to get an errand done. Look at the products on the shelves – does something stick out as funny or strange? Is there any new product you spotted that could make life a lot easier for people in your niche? How about the people you see and meet, and the conversation snippets you overhear? When you are observant, you will find a ton of ideas all around you. A mall, a busy department store, the small corner store or a farmers market are all perfect places to gain these ideas.
And don’t forget that product reviews are the perfect way to provide content to your readers while offering you the potential to make some money. Just make sure you stick to the products that are relevant or complementary to your niche. There is no point in reviewing an iPad if your blog is all about fly fishing (unless you focus on the new upcoming 4G features that will potentially allow your readers to search for the perfect technique to use while fly fishing in the remote corners of Wyoming).
If you have picked up (or are considering) one of the content related money making ideas–blogging, freelance writing, niche sites, eBooks, flipping websites etc.,–then you will invariably be in the funk every so often. What separates the successful folks (like you and me!) from the other million people out there we are competing with, is that we find a way to get out of the funk, and come out the other side stronger than ever before!
How do you get inspiration for your blog posts?