Marketing & Growth

Lost for Ideas? 4 Ways to Overcome Blogger’s Block

By Caron Beesley

Whether you blog for a living or blog because your boss tells you to, running out of ideas for your next post is a common problem.

But, you know what? Writer’s block is actually your friend because it forces you to reevaluate your thought process, your readership, and your goals.

That being said, it’s still a problem that you need to overcome. Here are some ideas for overcoming writer’s block and putting some inspiration back on the page.

Work Your RSS Feed
If you come across a blog that you like, add it to your RSS feed. Tools like Feedly, Feedreader, and digg reader make it easy to aggregate everything in one place.

Once set-up, scan the feeds regularly for inspiration. I’m not saying plagiarize other blogs, but look for ideas in the titles that other writers use or review topics they discuss. Is there another angle you could pursue? Is there a potential guest blogger in the bunch? Are there several opinions about a similar topic from different writers that you could weave into an original blog?

Don’t forget to follow blogs about blogging like Copyblogger and one of my favorites, Amy Lynn Andrews (be sure to sign up for her “Useletter” for weekly tips).

Check out Your Competition
Just as you want to keep an eye on industry bloggers, keep another eye on what your competition is writing about, especially if you’re blogging for your company. Could you deliver a better, more insightful blog on a particular topic? Nothing sparks an idea like healthy competition.

Get Closer to Your Target Reader
Whatever you’re tasked with writing about, it’s helpful to have the reader in mind. For example, this blog is written with the small business owner in mind. What better way to get ideas about these readers than to be among them. For me, that means talking to small business owners, reading about their challenges and needs, giving them my business, observing their mistakes, even watching TV shows that center on small business (SharkTank, Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares, etc.).

If you blog for your company and don’t always have a direct relationship with customers, seek out ways to get close to them. Shadow your sales team, attend events, networking seminars, etc.

By immersing yourself in your reader’s experience, ideas naturally follow.

Step Away
The most important time in a writer’s day, is the time you spend away from your computer screen.

Walking the dog, taking a shower, or getting the dinner ready – just when you think it’s time to turn off, great ideas often follow.

You could also change up your environment, move to another room in the house, park your laptop in Starbucks for the morning and see what kind of ideas flow from there.

Instead of feeling guilty about not powering away at your keyboard, embrace the change.

Finally…
If you’re really stuck for blog ideas, check out this blog from SmallBizTrend’s Anita Campbell – Never Run Out of Blog Topic Ideas: Here are 36. This one is always a good reference point if your creative juices really start to dry up!

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