If you’re a blogger, this is a very familiar problem. You blog consistently and exhaustively about a certain topic. It seems that you know your niche like the back of your hand. In fact, a lot of your visitors would leave comments complimenting you. It seems like you’re doing everything right.
But ultimately, you hit a wall. And unfortunately, it is a wall that you didn’t see coming. You think that when you got into your blog’s topic that you basically will never run out of things to say. After all, you’re passionate about it. You probably have written extensively about that topic. What could possibly go wrong?
Believe it or not, you are ultimately going to run out of blog post topics. In fact, this is the worst form of writer’s block because all bloggers would eventually have to confront this reality.
Now, you might be thinking to yourself that this is not going to happen because you have so many things to say and there’s just so much unfinished business in your niche. That very well may be true. But ultimately, if you develop certain blogger habits, sooner or later, you will run dry when it comes to stuff to talk about.
You see, when you’re a newbie blogger, it seems like the sky’s the limit, as far as blog post topics and ideas go. It seems that there is just no limitation because there’s just so much information to cover. But as you get better as a blogger, you quickly find out that the range of topics that your blog should address is actually fairly narrow.
It’s all about following your audience
How come blog topics tend to fit a narrow range? Why can’t you be free-ranging? Why can’t you just write about any and every topic that enters your mind as long as it’s somehow, someway, related to your niche?
Well, if you’ve done any kind of research on the top ranking Australian blogs, you’ll know why. You see, as exciting as it is to write about a topic that just came to you in a flash of inspiration, you are wasting tremendous time and resources writing that material when there’s a good chance that nobody’s going to believe it. That’s the bottom line.
Your blog exists for a purpose. It’s not just a place where you can dump stuff that makes you feel good. It’s not just a place for you to vent. It’s also a place for you to make money. That’s the bottom line.
If you’re not blogging for money, that’s fine. But eventually, you will run out of motivation because there’s nothing more motivating than seeing a few thousand dollars in your bank account month after month. There’s nothing more inspiring than understanding that you can make a lot of money by writing something once and forgetting about it.
Wouldn’t that be awesome? You write something and people click on ads when they find it through the internet and you make money. You work once, but you make money many times over from that same work. Wouldn’t you want to live that dream?
Well, this is called passive income and many people would love to live that dream. But there’s a price to pay for that. The price is you can’t just blog about any old idea that comes into your mind. That’s a one-way ticket to bankruptcy and a waste of time. Instead, you look at what’s hot in your niche and you blog about those topics.
And that’s why as open-ended as your niche initially appeared, it quickly dawns on you that there’s actually a narrow range of topics that you can write on. This is why a lot of bloggers, regardless of how passionate they started out as, quickly run out of blog post topics.
How do you jumpstart your blog post topic idea generation?
So how do you get out from under the very common problem of running out of blog post topics? Well, do what I do. Look at similar topics and questions on Quora, and write long answers as blog posts on your blog. The trick here is you can then link from Quora as well!
Another method, is to see what your competitors are talking about and reduce those into topics.
So once you have a list of topics, brainstorm logical relationships with those topics. Are they talking about a sub-topic that may have a lot of demand but isn’t properly covered? Are they completely missing certain sub-topics?
Come up with all sorts of brainstormed sub-topic ideas. Again, write everything that comes to mind, follow your intuition, write from the gut. Just get all those sub-topics down.
Make sure you follow this next step
Now that you have brainstormed your way to getting a nice list of sub-topics that you think your competitors are either addressing incorrectly or they’re not addressing these subtopics in-depth or they’re just completely missing them, you have to take the next step. This step is non-negotiable. This step is absolutely crucial because if you do not follow this step, you are going to be wasting your time. Seriously.
You have just blown it. Kiss that time goodbye. What is this step? Well, it’s a simple matter of cross-referencing. Now that you have this long list of sub-topics, the next thing that you need to do is go to the comment sections of posts that you pull up on your competitors’ sites.
What are those people talking about? What are they complaining about? What do they suggest? What kind of feedback are they leaving? Pay close attention to this information. Look for any kind of corroboration or any kind of evidence that suggests that the commenters want you to talk about the sub-topic.
This obviously will take a lot of time. But believe me, this is time worth investing because you will end up with blog posts that nobody’s talking about. These are blog post topics that are in demand, but your competitors are doing a bad job covering. In fact, in many cases, they’re not even talking about them.
This is free money. Think of it that way. Put in the time. It’s going to be a hassle. In many cases, it’s a pain in the butt. But it is worth doing.
Because once you do this, you get a competitive advantage that nobody can take away from you. You’re golden after this. So go through the process.