Freshly Squeezed Content
Photo by turtlemom4bacon

For most of us blogging is a labor of love, personally, it’s one of my few productive activities in which I take pleasure in. Most of all I love the fact that I can make my voice felt and known in the world, I actually help make a difference in the world; something that wouldn’t be possible in normal conditions. Blogging is very rewarding from so many points of view, even financially for some lucky few of us, however, at times it can be a very frustrating task, especially when you’ve ran out of things to say.

After months of enthusiastic and passionate blogging, in which you’ve laid down into words a bundle of ideas, it’s pretty normal to find yourself a bit short of post subjects from time to time. As some of you may recall, I’ve written about the subject a few months ago when I dwelt upon blogging burnouts and how to get past them. In the respective article I told you all about how you can emotionally and mentally prepare to get back in blogging shape, but didn’t talk as much as I wanted about how to come up with new content. If you feel like you can’t produce new blog posts because of blogging burnouts and depressions please read this article, before continuing.

Brainstorming And Inspiration

Brainstorming
Photo by Petoo

If you’re writing on niche blogs, that depend on current events, like technology, entertainment, sports etc, it’s virtually absurd to say you’ve got nothing to post about, because there’s always something going on. On blogs that require a certain degree of originality and uniqueness from behalf of the blogger, the situation is a bit different, often depending on the blogger’s mood, knowledge and of course inspiration. Let’s see how we convey all the little things around us into blog posts:

  1. Read a lot! Bloggers are notorious for being extremely ambivalent, they’re content writers, designers, programmers, editors, podcasters and God knows what else, but a good blogger is a good researcher too. Blogging is a constant learning experience, a endless learning curve, that requires a lot of documentation, awareness and a up-to-date status with various events in the respective field. So, the more you read, the more information you assimilate, the more knowledgeable you become, which in term will not only lead to a constant flow of posts, but a very well written ones too.
  2. RSS is your friend. Take advantage of the marvel that is RSS and subscribe to the leading, most authoritative blogs in your niche. Look for blogs that produce constant original and unique content and religiously follow them. Don’t just read their most recent work, but confidently scour through their whole archive, if possible from the very first post. I did this with Problogger a year ago and most recently with Skelliewag, when I read all their archives from day one. The amount of knowledge and insight, that I’ve been able to gain, was truly immense and not only helped me develop a great deal as a blogger, but also provided inspiration.
  3. Change your working environment. It’s possible to get idea blockage, from a subconscious level, because your brain got used to the same working environment. I usually don’t come with post ideas at my work desk, but rather in different places; on the street while I’m taking a walk, in a club with my friends (I seem to get really inspired when on alcohol :D) or while I’m making a sandwich in my kitchen. Isaac Newton managed to elaborate some of the most important principals in physics after he was studying under a tree and a apple fell on his head, thus inspiring him to write the laws of gravity. Also a change of schedule may also do wonders. The main idea would be the to escape from your daily working routines.
  4. Traditional media.The various forms of conventional, non-internet, media can prove to be quite useful and insightful for brainstorming. Books, newspapers, magazines, TV etc all have the potential to inspire ideas for new content. You don’t necessarily have to read stuff in your field either, as even the most contradictory of topics may provide the necessary boost you need. Everything is connected and related to each other, you just have to connect the dots between them.
  5. Always be on the lookout. Remarkable things happen every day around us, but most of us go right past them unnoticeable. Take a moment, ignore all of your tasks and just experience life to its fullest. If that doesn’t bring any ideas I don’t know what will.
  6. Ask readers. Community projects can be a great way to come up with new blog posts. Make polls and ask questions to your readers, if possible every weekend, like what’s their opinion on a certain matter or better yet ask them what they’d like to read on the blog. I’ve got a lot of posts written after readers e-mailed me to answer certain questions, that proved to be quite interesting and post worthy material.
  7. Make features. I’ve found that making features on a blog, not only fantastically relates to readers, but are also fairly easy to maintain and write up. Don’t make them too complicated or else they’ll consume too much of your time; keep it simple, like short weekly columns, link roundups, video conferences and podcasts.Inspiration
    Photo by sharaff
  8. Search engines. If you’re feeling a bit dry on content, you can always try to open a search engine, enter a keyword or series of keywords, related to your industry or particular subject you might be interested and hit search. Browse through various pages and articles and read, read, read! Also you can always look on what people searched for the most during a specific time frame, although I wouldn’t recommend writing about something that’s already been done over and over again. To check for top searches try Google Zeitgest and AOL Hot Searches.
  9. Mind mapping. This is the most fruitful technique for developing new content. It consists in picking a broader topic and then laying down various related subjects around it. In example you can choose “New Content For Your Blog” as a topic and then you can try associating related posts around it, like “7 Inspirational Locations,” “6 Lost Brainstorming Techniques,” “101 Resources To Inspire You” and the lists could go on and on. It’s all about deriving, spinning and regurgitating content so that you come up with new and at times unique content. A more detailed explanation of the phenomenon has been written by Darren Rowse.
  10. Follow web trends. Much like search engine top results, web trends help you find out what’s popular on the web now, taking in consideration not just search results, but also traffic and other measurable data. This is not only a great method to come up with fresh content, but also, by seeing what’s popular among a targeted audience, you could also start new blogs in the respective fields. Be careful what niche you choose though. For web trend information I like to use Technorati Most Popular and Blog Pulse.
  11. Write from your ideas notebook. If you’ve got one, like any respectable blogger, then finding things to post about isn’t difficult at all. If you don’t … well you better start making one and fast. We humans get a myriad of thoughts and ideas crossing over our heads, that most often remain unexploited and well, forgotten. How many times did you get a fantastic blog post idea, while jogging, but then completely forgot about it? I’m gonna take a wild guess and say a lot. Be smart and keep track of your ideas whenever something pops out, no matter how stupid or foolish it my seem at the beginning, just write it down and review it home. You don’t necessarily need a notebook, although I prefer using a pen and paper, you could use your PDA, phone, blackberry whatever, just store the ideas somewhere. When taking notes of ideas, I’d recommend you add some additional, secondary lines, next to the main idea, so that you can, from the start, make a incipient post structure.
  12. If all fails turn to content recycling. If you’ve searched through your whole mind and found that there wasn’t anything interesting left to post about, can’t imagine how though, you can always try to mimic some one else’s subjects and content. Don’t copy, but rather “recycle.” Don’t just re-arrange the words either, you have to come up with your personal insights on the subject of the blog post you’ve been inspired from. Also through thorough research, try to bring something more to the article, then the original author did.

Resources

Innocence
Photo by PrASanGaM

Here’s a list of websites that contain solid, constantly updated content, that’s sure to aid you in your quest for new content, sorted by categories:

Various News

Various Social Media Resources

Various Search Engine And Aggregation Data

Content creation is never easy, but when fueled with inspiration and bliss, words just seem to fly away. How do you come up with blog post ideas? Do you have any special techniques? I’d appreciate any form of feedback.

If you found this read useful, then please consider stumbling or bookmarking it to del.icio.us.

If you enjoyed this post, then you might consider subscribing to our feed via RSS or e-mail. Find out more about subscribing here. Thanks for visiting!

AddThis Social Bookmark Button AddThis Feed Button
  1. Erica DeWolf

    Great post! This is indeed something that every blogger goes through: looking for fresh, relevant content to write about! Especially since we’re expected to write so frequently. These are some great tips on how to get inspired! Thanks!

  2. Robin Sampson

    Great ideas. I wrote a post about it. I use Ta Da lists to keep my blogging ideas in one place with links (sometimes simple is best).

    I couldn’t live with my RSS reader. I frequently use it to jog my creative side.

    Thanks.

  3. Tibi Puiu

    @Erica: thanks a lot much appreciate it.
    @Robit: glad you found the post useful and insightful, and yes I’d be a dead man too without my RSS reader :D

  4. PixelHead

    Great writing resource post. I like the idea of writing from your blogging notebook. I use the traditional media a lot, but have found that by time the news makes it to the traditional media it is old news already.
    Surfing the front pages of the various social networks provides a lot of fodder as well.

  5. Mike Panic

    If you want to quickly scan what’s hot across most all social bookmarking / networking sites, check out http://www.popurls.com. I had no idea what the site was all about until an article I wrote got pretty popular on digg and a reddit and traffic started to also come from PopURLs too. Great aggregator site.

  6. Tibi Puiu

    @Pixel: Yeah, I’ve always said that keeping notes is always a good idea, you never know when you come up with a potential brilliant idea and then lose track of it. And yes, I love scouring social media sites too :D
    @Mike Panic: Forgot to add that to the resource list, don’t know how it slipped my mind. Adding it now, thanks a lot for letting me know.

  7. Isabella

    Tibi,

    A refreshing name to attach to a refreshing email!
    Thank you for some inspiring suggestions & helpful links.

    Regards,
    Isabella

    760 Media

  8. Geld Lenen

    I’m a mailman and I always use my cellphone to remember what I’ve thought of during my work. It always works, because my cellphone is full of inspiration. Now if I only could find some time to work all the ideas out! :P

  9. Software downloaden

    This is an amazing list of serious and good tips for gettin’ new content for your blog. I don’t have a blog, but I can use it for my article website. Thanks man, it figured out a lot which I never knew before.

  10. Tibi Puiu

    @Geld: that’s very use of you, using your cellphone for storing scrap notes. As for the lack of time thingy, what you need to keep in mind is that time is something you make, if you really want to do something bad enough, then you can make all the time in the world available.
    @Software D.: glad you’ve found the post useful, but why not make a blog? It’s so easy these days and I’m sure you’ll find all the tips you need, in the blog’s archive, to start a successful one, right from the very beginning.

  11. Keith

    Great article…indeed we need to stay alert and aware of things happening around us that, too, may be good sources of inspiration for new content. All the best, Keith J, Webmaster “FreeMathRescue.com”

  12. Isabella

  13. Armen

    Good post!
    I find the best place to get ideas for good content, is written material outside the Internet, in books and magazines. They tend to be much more profitable.

  14. Hotel Near Eiffel Tower

    Whan I started testing with Adsense 12 mths ago, I followed the advise that we should find a niche that we are passionate about. I thouht I am passionate about franchise busines.

    There you go… I wrote about franchise business for almost 10 months. My adsense account income to grow from $0 to $200+ a month (2 hundred plus). The my country that is a fairly good abount of mney (junior clerk salary).

    Then I got bored. The topic that I thought I am iterested in was sooo boring to write anymore. Since then I barely update them and my adsense income flattened and slowly declined.

    The truth is, Yes I like to write about franchise business but No… i am not willing to write about it every day (or several times a week).. becouse then it become a painful job.

    Then I realise that my day job wasn’t too bad. And in my company, we travel around the world to meet clients. In the process.. we spent a lot of time on the internet finding info about our travel, to save money & budget.

    Then hey presto. I should have documented all info I got while doing it. Since I will be in this job for a very long year to come… eventually I will get tons of speciliased info which is kind of niche content and good for adsense.

    And now I am making a U turn. Dont blog about something you think u passion about… stay in your day job and blog about your work. Specialise content on your daily work!!

  15. Tibi Puiu

    @Hotel Near Eiffel Tower: well that’s what I tell most people too, whenever someone asks me what he should blog about. But you don’t really need to be good at what you do or work in the related field of your blogging, as long as you’re passionate about your writing the knowledge and skill will come on the fly.

  16. Tanner Christensen

    Some solid advice - and resources - Tibi. I especially liked your recommendation of looking for content ideas in traditional media. Copyblogger had an article a few months ago about how magazine headlines are great resources for inspiring blog headlines.

  17. jacki janse van rensburg

    for a lot of people in USA blogging is familiar, and there is a lot of info about it to be found. if you are a newbie, you just ask your neighbour/granny/greengrocer, and they will explain everything to you.

    but i am in south africa, and here blogging is very new. i am doing ok, but when i want to learn something new, i cannot just ask. i scour the web for info, but i find most websites very intimidating. for example, i know NOTHING about subscribing, RSS feeds, etc. and i find that the explanations around are too technical. they take for granted a certain level of understanding, that i do not have.

    i like that you go into detail about your topic, in a understandable way. please include some more ‘basic’ topics for beginner bloggers.

  18. Tibi Puiu

    @jacki: thanks for the comment, jacki. I’m glad you appreciate my work. I’ve received similar e-mails from readers, asking me to write more articles for beginners. I’ve done some thinking and I’ve decided to write an e-book for beginner bloggers. I’ll start work on it in august. Hopefully it’ll be ready by late September/October.

  19. Geld lenen

    There are some nice forums here in Netherlands about subject.
    You can do the actual stuff with a strange taste, those are hot ;-)!

  20. Erik

    If your life is boring your blog is boring… Just write down what you do every day.. If you sit 24 hours a day behind your monitor stop posting…

  21. Nicholas Z. Cardot

    I do mind mapping a lot. In fact I found a website called Mind Meister (http://www.mindmeister.com) and it allows you to mind map online. All your tips are great but that one stuck out to me because that is what I use to develop all of my ideas.

  22. Brit-Alfonso

    This brings me to an idea:…

  23. jim

    There are some nice forums here in Netherlands about subject.
    You can do the actual stuff with a strange taste, those are hot

  24. tuinlantaarn

    Thanks so much for providing individuals with such a splendid opportunity to read in detail from this website. It is always very brilliant and as well , jam-packed with a good time for me personally and my office co-workers to search your web site a minimum of thrice weekly to read the new guidance you have got. Of course, I’m also always fascinated considering the fantastic thoughts you give. Some 2 ideas on this page are easily the most suitable we have ever had.

  25. seo

    See what is popular on twitter/google/yahoo top searches and write a post quickly.

  26. infolinoimify
  27. Lousamichelina

    you definitely love gucci bag outlet gucci bags outlet to your friends gucci bags outlet and get big save

  28. gucci outlet

    Electronic are decidedly advantageous about blurred account puffiness. Do you acquisition it basic for trendsetters for accomplishing it to amount several thousand 100’s of dollars for your artist purse conceivably a trend travelling bag I do anticipate that may audible association accommodate audible resolutions. For auction trainer fetish, I am clumsy to abjure the

  1. 1 Blogging 101 » Blog Archive » Finding New, Freshly Squeezed Content For Your Blog

    [...] Read the full post with 12 great blogging suggestions for blog content written byTibi Puiu at The Lost Art of Blogging [...]

  2. 2 links for 2008-02-28 oggin.net

    [...] Finding New, Freshly Squeezed Content For Your Blog | Lost Art Of Blogging If you’re writing on niche blogs, that depend on current events, like technology, entertainment, sports etc, it’s virtually absurd to say you’ve got nothing to post about, because there’s always something going on. On blogs that require a certain [...]

  3. 3 This Month In SEO - 2/08 - TheVanBlog

    [...] Finding New, Freshly Squeezed Content For Your Blog [...]

  4. 4 Caroline’s Favourite Links #12 | Caroline Middlebrook

    [...] Finding New, Freshly Squeezed Content For Your Blog - This post by Tibi Puiu is not the first to be written about finding inspiration for your blog posts but it’s always nice to see a fresh perspective on it and this particular post is very comprehensive, I liked it a lot. [...]

  5. 5 Beginners Blogging Tips for Fossilized Clams

    [...] Finding New, Freshly Squeezed Content For Your Blog [...]

  6. 6 22 Essential Habits Towards Blogging Success | Lost Art Of Blogging

    [...] in the business of regularly producing original and thought provoking content, trust me, you need all the inspiration you can get. During a particular day your mind could be invaded with hundreads of ideas, the majority of which, [...]

  7. 7 Blogs & Blogging - All 2009 Nominees » SEMMYS.org

    [...] Finding New, Freshly Squeezed Content For Your Blog Tibi Puiu, Lost Art of Blogging | 2/24/08 [...]

  8. 8 Blogs & Blogging - 2009 Finalists » SEMMYS.org

    [...] Finding New, Freshly Squeezed Content For Your Blog Tibi Puiu, Lost Art of Blogging | 2/24/08 [...]

  9. 9 Blogging in a Twitter World: Is There Any Room For Both? | Lost Art Of Blogging

    [...] block at the moment or wish to prevent it, you should definitely check out my post on finding new, freshly squeezed content for your [...]



Leave a Comment



Please read the Comment Policy



© 2007 - 2008. All rights reserved Lost Art Of Blogging. Designed by Paul Stamatiou and customized by Tibi Puiu.
Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.