There are many important elements to crafting an excellent blog post and creating great content for your website. The most crucial is to have a topic to actually write about, because without that you are simply greeted by that blinking cursor and frustration!
Sometimes it can be difficult to consistently find great content to blog about on your website. This tends to get more difficult over time as your audience grows and you produce more and more original content.
At Content Academy, myself and @philmcgrath2 have over seven years experience of creating high quality, high volume and most importantly high converting blog posts.
At certain times over our journey we have been creating up to twenty pieces of content per day! Now that may seem overkill, but if your creating content that you are passionate about, that is serving your audience and generating a great income – It is the Best Job in the World!
We have decided to share our successful methods to ensure that you never ever run out of idea’s for great content. It is equally important that the idea’s get written! So we cover that too.
Time is precious and our methods make sure you maximise yours to help you better serve your audience.
[spp-tweet tweet=”Want a Great Blog? All that’s Needed is Consistency & Quality Content“]
The two key ingredients to great blogging are consistency and your ability to create quality content. Preparation and creating content in advance will allow you to deliver blog content consistently, however finding content can sometimes be challenging. Here are our top nine ways to find content for your blog.
1. Plan Articles Types Ahead of Time if Possible (Not Essential, but it helps)
With any blog it is important to plan ahead content that you are going to create, if possible. Some articles will be based around news; we wrote a lot about this for our fantasy football sites but always knew they types of articles that would be produced so we could prepare for them.
Even if your blog depends on the news or sport you can still gather information ahead of sitting down to write your article.
If you’ve planned your content ahead of time you will know that you have certain topics that you are planning to write about.
Your audience is better served by you when you gather information for planned articles head of time. Make sure to check out our advice on Editorial Calendars after finishing this post.
2. Serve Your Audience First, Look at Word Count Second
It is an advantage if you know the types of article you want to produce e.g. short news article, in-depth 3000-word evergreen post, 500-word general interest post.
A good barometer is the bigger the topic, the bigger the word count will become due to more aspects that need to be covered for your audience.
Don’t worry if you do not have any of these parameters defined, having at the very least a rough idea will help guide your research but it is not essential.
Your content research may inspire you to write on a topic you never considered before.
Our experience of word count is not to focus on it. Write a great post, get your point across and don’t think about the word count. If a news article is 300 words or 600 words it makes little difference, once you are serving your audience.
3. Use Apps to Research & Capture Content Idea’s ANYWHERE
Most entrepreneurs, hell most people are constantly coming up with ideas. If you are running a business, website or trying to promote yourself online I bet you are always thinking, analysing the world around you and getting inspired.
There is no reason for you to ever sit down to write a blog post and “have nothing to write about”.
Sometimes we have to fight with ourselves to actually get time in our busy diaries to actually sit down and write, but not having a multitude of possible blog posts to write at any given time means you are doing something wrong.
My personal approach to writing is very simple, as I have an idea, read, hear or see something that could be of use in one of my future blogs – I Capture It! Using Microsoft OneNote
(Evernote is another great notebook software, there are many more too). At the time of writing this post, I am currently producing content for a technology company with my Microsoft Pre Sales consultancy background, writing weekly LinkedIn Pulse posts on the telecommunications industries shift to becoming IT providers, running a Fantasy Football Blog and writing for Content Academy.
I keep a Microsoft OneNote notebook for each project that I am working on. Within the notebook I capture my blog ideas on a daily basis.
[spp-tweet tweet=””Producing Great Online Content is Getting More Competitive, Don’t Fall Behind Because You Don’t Have a Process Backed By Technology” – Paul Caffrey”]
4. Create “Content Idea’s”, “Content Research” and “Content Drafts” notebook sections
If I have an idea or I am inspired, I will open the notebook on my laptop or smartphone and type it into a page titled “Content Ideas”, sometimes I may be driving or out for a run and in that case I simply hit the “Microphone Button” and record my voice.
I then continue on with my day and review these ideas’ at a later time to see if they can become full blog posts or be at least incorporated into one.
“While working in central London last week I saw that Starbucks now allows users to order drinks on their smartphone app for collection – How Can I develop this concept further and apply it to other industries to write a blog post on the Internet of Things?” – Recent Note from my “Content Idea’s” Technology Blog Notebook.
If I read an interesting article, see something on social media or any other online platform I copy the info and paste it into the same notebook, as it is still only an idea for a post.
I set time in my diary to review my content idea’s and then select the best to move into the “Content Research” section. At this point, further development of the idea along with research on the topic is completed.
When researching, make sure you capture the URL/Source that you are taking information from to allow you to reference it and also if needed investigate the content more thoroughly at a later date.
At this point the post is starting to take shape. The decision is made to either add the researched idea to the “Parked Content” or the “Content Drafts” section of my notebook. Time is then scheduled into my Editorial Calendar to start writing the post’s added to the “Content Drafts” section
Otherwise the idea stays “Parked” in the “Parked Content” section, where it may be used at a later date.
5. Have “Priority Posts” in your Content Research Section for Must Write Posts
Taking journaling a step further, it is recommended to list future blog posts that you definitely plan to write about on separate notes in your chosen note taking platform (OneNote or Evernote). These articles are called “Priority Posts” and should take precedence over all others.
As you come across relevant information, other blog posts, tweets and any other material that you deem useful. copy the link and save it to your notebook.
This means that when you come to write that blog you will be greeted with a range of links to relevant content that will reduce the time you spent staring at that dreaded blinking cursor for one of your “must write” posts.
At this point you should have a system in place to capture your content ideas. It is now time to find great content to actually write about. Let’s get started!
LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS POST:
- Content Academy’s Guide to Editorial Calendars
- Microsoft OneNote – My Personal Favorite, This Organises Not Only my Content, But my Life!!
- Evernote – The Basic Version is Free & Great for Getting Organised
These Links are NOT AFFILIATE LINKS! Just Great Free Tools that we use at Content Academy and Highly Recommend.
This content is created for free to add value to you! If you found the information useful, send me a Tweet Now and Share!
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Don’t for get to check out Part Two in this series as we take a look at another five tips to help you create better content, not to mention even more resources we use and trust.