As originally published on FlyingSolo
Without an entire marketing team at your disposal, maintaining a blog can be an exhaustive task, and coming up with the constant flow of content needed to feed it it can be a creative drain.
However, varying your article formats and thinking differently about not only what you write about, but also how you write about it can quickly refresh a tired old blog – and its author.
Use these 10 content ideas to energise your blog:
1. Present industry research
To become seen as a thought leader within your industry, you need to have your finger on the pulse of the latest industry research. Keep your eye on new university studies, white papers, survey results and developing trends that are relevant to your industry and your readers. Not only will this give you plenty of fodder for blog articles, it will also quickly set you up as key resource for your readers.
2. Interview an expert
A nice twist on publishing a guest blog is to interview an expert in your field, or in a related discipline. The interview format allows you to tailor the questions you ask to the specific industry interests and concerns of your readers. The interview format invites new voices onto your blog much like a guest post, but comes with added advantage of including you as part of the conversation.
3. Share a personal anecdote
All work and no play makes a dull blog. Don’t be afraid to let your hair down now and then to reveal a little personality. Sharing a personal anecdote about a past failure and what you learned from it – done carefully – is a great way to help your readers relate to you and build your profile as an approachable mentor.
4. Write a book review
Read a great book that relates to your industry? Tell your blog followers about it. Your opinion carries value as an industry insider, and commenting on the book gives you an opportunity to share your own thoughts on the same topic. However, always be sure to credit the author and don’t republish large sections of the book – that’s plagiarism.
5. Produce a how-to guide
Address a common pain point in your industry with a step-by-step how-to guide. You might choose to write about general business issues such as managing employees or boosting personal productivity; or make your topic industry-specific to target a well-defined niche and improve your SEO.
6. Reveal an industry insight
What do you want to be known for within your industry? Revealing specific industry insights in your blog article is an effective method to establish both your perspective and special area of expertise. Use these articles to express your point of difference from the pack and showcase the unique value or experience you bring to the table.
7. Offer a cheat sheet
Not all blog articles need to be text heavy. Consider providing a checklist your readers can download and refer to as they complete a common task, a questionnaire they can use to interview job candidates, or guidelines on a health and safety issue they can display in their workplace.
8. Author an opinion column
Opinion columns are an excellent way to weigh in on trending issues that are important within your industry and get your voice heard on the topics that matter most to your readers. Don’t be controversial just for the sake of it, but sharing strong opinions can spark debates that draw more attention to your blog.
9. Make a prediction
Embrace your inner Nostradamus and make some bold predictions. These blog articles are often good thought starters at the beginning of the calendar year as you predict the big industry trends you expect to see in the coming months. Get it right and you’ll be seen as a forward thinker.
10. Hold a reader Q&A session
Get your readers involved in your blog and publish a call out to answer any questions they have. It will help build your profile as a go-to industry mentor, and is a valuable opportunity to gauge what’s concerning your readers. Use this knowledge to inform your future content to keep your blog relevant and on point.