So, you have a blog (or newsletter, or social media post) to write every week (or month, or day). Every once in a while, do you find yourself stumped on where to go next?
Consider these strategies to plan ahead on your content schedule so that you don’t find yourself stuck when the due date comes around.
Check Out The Current Topics:
Market research is important! For your industry, certainly you know who is leading the conversation online. What topics seem to be the focus right now? Once you’ve identified what seems to be interesting people right now, think about what might match well with that interest.
Instead of just reworking the same blog you’ve seen five times already this week, think about what might come “next” in a reader’s mind after reading about this topic. This will let you cash in on the current focus of readers while still being original and adding to the conversation rather than just being an echo.
Consider What's Missing Online:
Similar to the last idea, but the opposite. When you’re scrolling through social media or checking out the buzz in your industry, do you notice a “gap” in what is being talked about? Conversely, when discussing your work with clients or partners, do certain questions keep coming up? This is a good indicator of something that the industry may be overlooking at the moment.
By taking a space in the conversation that is currently empty, you make yourself the go-to place for that issue. And getting there before everyone else means that you will likely have success with readers who haven’t seen this topic discussed elsewhere recently.
Reflect On What Work In The Past:
Have you ever noticed that some things seem to really resonate with people more than others? It's only natural that not everything you create will be a home run.
Keeping in mind that your audience may have grown over time, consider revisiting a previous topic that was very popular with readers. Update your old post completely or simply take inspiration; this is a good way to take something from previous quarters and ensure your message is still getting out, while also feeling confident that your audience will be interested.
Put Yourself in the Readers' Shoes:
If you weren’t the expert on the matter, what might you be curious about?
It seems simple, but this is a good way to generate ideas. What do you struggle with? What do you find yourself thinking about? What questions did you have when you were starting out? What inspires your curiosity about your field?
Use those questions as a springboard for creating material for readers who may be in the same situation as you. If you were considering this topic, it's likely that someone else was considering it as well.
Write What You're Passionate About!:
When all else fails, writing about something personally interesting to you is a great place to start. Your expertise and passion will shine through in your writing, and who knows, maybe it will continue to inspire you, and you'll end up with more than you started with!
Take Advantage of Inspiration:
Sometimes you’ll find your mind totally dry of ideas; but sometimes, the ideas will be overflowing! This waxing and waning of inspiration is only natural. But try to take advantage of those moments when you find yourself completely possessed by the muse.
While it might not be realistic to expect you to fully write out every single idea you have at a given time, at least jot down your thoughts so you can return to it later when you’re lacking inspiration. The more you can do while inspired (be it just scattered bullet points, a general outline of structure, or a full rough draft)... the more thankful you will be in the future.
I mean… obviously!
If you can think of a series or split one idea into a few different posts, the more in-depth you can get and the more you can ensure that your scheduling platform is populated. If you can think of a series or a theme to follow, the more organized your content will be. Making a cohesive series can also allow you to gain momentum, bringing in a wider audience.
When All Else Fails...
When you've struck a brick wall, you can always hire someone else to write for you. Others may be able to see a notion that you haven't been able to come up with!
Assistants4Hire offers services like this and so much more!
Want to learn more about our business and what type of services we provide?
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Written by Jordan McAndrew