I’ll be honest with you: Finding meaningful things to say on a regular basis can be difficult. In my opinion, you just don’t really have an eye-opening, deep, insightful revelation EVERY SINGLE WEEK. Sometimes, there’s just a lot of unnecessary emails, meetings that take too long and tedious tasks that drain you of all your creative energy, am I right? Thankfully, like pretty much everything, brainstorming new content ideas can be learned, practiced and improved easily.
Because I want to make sure I stay consistent with my choice of topics for my blog or newsletter, I like to look at the three core issues I came up with & base pretty much all my work on:
- Sharing your story
- Knowing what you stand for
- Focus on yourself & block out the noise
I feel like having these 3 main topics helps me figure out what I want to say and what key points or take away a piece of content should have; that’s why everything and anything I write always falls into at least one of those categories mentioned above. I also – and this is a no-brainer, but really useful – like to keep a hand-written list of topics that randomly pop into my head which I might use later. I even turned into one of those people with a notepad on their bedside table because you know what, that shit actually works!
When it comes to actually brainstorm new content topics, I found that there are 3 areas you can start with: Your environment, your audience or yourself. Let me expand on that a bit:
Whatever industry you are in, chances are you know a lot about it. You are probably aware of new trends, of things that have been done so often they are officially OVER (for example, avocado toast on Instagram), of things you would like to change, of things you want to clarify or call attention to. All of this can and should serve as a great starting point for your next newsletter, blog post, freebie or even e-book. Simply start writing down things that come to mind when you think about your industry, your work environment or your area of expertise.
Writing something without having your audience in mind is almost as dangerous as opening Twitter the day after a new Game of Thrones episode which you haven’t seen yet. Which means: DON’T DO IT. Everything you create should be of value to your audience – even if that value sometimes mainly consists of Beyoncé GIFs. So start thinking about what problems your audience might need solved, which areas they could use help with and how you can make their lives easier. In my experience, it’s often the most basic things people don’t talk about simply because they believe they’re so obvious. Well, they’re not! Just because something is super obvious and crystal clear to you doesn’t mean your audience knows all about it.
Last but not least, a little bit of self-reflecting is always a good idea, as long as it’s not too personal or too humblebraggy (“I made all this money in such a short time and I don’t really know how, lolz”). I always find it super interesting to read about other people’s honest accounts on what they struggled with and how they managed to change, improve or just ignore a certain situation. Ask yourself: What sort of advice was most useful to me in the past? What sort of things did I have to battle against? Is there something I would have loved to know more about a year ago? Don’t be afraid to pour your heart out a little and get real – it’s where most of the best writing happens, anyway.
And because I’m a big fan of the afore-mentioned value, I have compiled a handy list of questions aimed at helping you come up with awesome content super quick and easy. Whether you carve out an hour of your time and go through the document as a whole or just want to keep it on hand in case you’re stuck – it will definitely do the job!
20 questions to ignite your inspirational spark and help you come up with amazing new content ideas in no time!
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