One of the most challenging aspects of freelance blog writing is coming with ideas.
Since my writing is so prolific throughout the personal finance blogosphere, one of the questions I am asked most often is, “How do you come with blog post ideas?”
There are days when it's not easy. Sometimes I stare blankly at the computer screen, willing inspiration to strike. However, there are some steps I take to reduce the amount of time it takes to come up with an idea for a blog post. Here 5 ways that I make my freelance blog writing a little easier by finding post ideas:
1. Ask Your Clients
Sometimes, it's just that easy. I often ask my blog staff writing clients if they have any requests. In some cases, they respond with a whole list of items they want covered. That makes freelance blog writing very easy indeed.
Even if all you are given is a keyword, it's enough to spark a blog post idea. Ask your clients for ideas, and you not only write what your client wants, but you spend a little less time begging the writing gods for inspiration.
2. Look at Your Life
Some of my ideas are “real.” They come from my life, or from situations I've seen others experience. Writing about something that is relatable to others, and that comes from your own experience, can be a great way to inject a little personality into your blog posts, as well as add something unique to an article.
Let's face it: Once you get into blog staff writing, you realize that you write about the same things a lot. Getting post ideas from your own experiences can liven up a warmed-over subject.
3. Look at the News
Blog posts ripped from the headlines attract attention. While blogs like to have a lot of evergreen content, the occasional news piece, related to what's happening right now can be just the thing for a bump in your client's traffic (and maybe mean a traffic bonus for you). When you add a different spin to the news, or just comment on what's happening, you have a blog post ready-made.
4. Ask Someone Else for Ideas
There are times when I'm stumped. I want to some up with something useful to write, though. So I ask someone else. There are posts of mine that have come into being just because I said to my mom: “What is the one thing you want to know about ______. Go!”
I've even texted my husband, in the middle of helping one of his students, and asked him to ask the student what s/he wanted to know about a particular subject. Sometimes I get a totally out-there and random answer, and it makes for an awesome blog post.
5. Keep an Idea List
Put together a list of freelance blog writing ideas. I keep document on Google Drive with ideas and links to interesting studies. When I'm suffering from writer's block, I just go to that list. I also keep a little black notebook in my purse, so I can jot down ideas while I'm out and about. I've also started using the voice memos on my iPhone so that I can instantly record blog post ideas.
What's your go-to method for finding blog post ideas?