Publishing a steady stream of ever-flowing content is important for ranking.
If you’re an online content writer in any capacity…
You need a seemingly endless river of blog ideas for writers, one that never runs dry.
So, what do you do when it does?
What do you do when you need to come up with topics, but you feel like you’re stranded in the middle of a rain-parched, burnt-out desert?
You’d better head toward that oasis shimmering on the horizon, and pray it’s the river.
Lucky for you, in this metaphorical scenario, it usually is.
The way to the river of content is a path full of writing prompts, research, brainstorming, and good old-fashioned hard work.
To make your journey 10 times easier, we’ve compiled our best strategies for getting there. Come back to this list again and again for a quick way to get on track.
Let’s get going with blog ideas for writers!
Blog Ideas for Writers: 20 Prompts, Research Tips, Keyword Discovery Strategies & More to Keep You Rolling
Sometimes, all you need is a push in the right direction to get moving. That little nudge is enough to get ideas sprouting in your head, growing quickly, and bearing fruit.
1. Start with a Subject and Create Variations
Chances are, if you’re looking for blog ideas, you probably already have one or two percolating. Take these and create variations to start off with some quick ideas for lots of posts.
For instance, HubSpot recommends creating iterations of one topic by going both broader and narrower with it. If you start with “X Baking Tips and Tricks for Beginners,” you could narrow it down to “X Cookie-Baking Tips and Tricks for Beginners.” Or, go a little broader: “X Everyday Tips and Tricks for Baking and Cooking.”
Keep going up and down the broad/narrow ladder and you could come up with 10, 15, or even 20 ideas quite easily.
2. Use Topic Generators
Another way to find variations of one blog idea is to use topic generators. All you have to do is plug in a keyword, and the generator will spit out different ways to frame the topic.
Sometimes these won’t make grammatical sense, but the point is to get ideas flowing rather than grab ready-made, publishable topics.
One of the most popular topic generators is HubSpot’s. I entered the keywords “baking,” “cakes,” and “beginners” into the generator:
Some don’t make sense, but some are a great starting point for ideas. (I would really want to read “The Worst Advice We’ve Ever Heard About Cakes”!)
Another worthy tool is Portent’s Content Idea Generator. Mess around with these and see what comes out of it. You could make some good sparks that light up your idea fire.
3. Ask Basic Questions
If you’re stumped for blog ideas, go back to basics. Write about basic topics, but frame them in terms of your business/industry, your personal brand/growth, or your keys to success. Here are some good questions to ask to get you started:
- What does your creative process look like?
- Have you discovered any new tools recently that boosted your workflow?
- What’s the top question customers ask you?
- What’s the history of your business?
4. Find Trending Topics with BuzzSumo for Blog Ideas for Writers
BuzzSumo is a fantastic tool to aid you in your quest for blog ideas. There are seemingly hundreds of ways to search various topics and keywords and glean lots of helpful data. Here’s just one way.
Go to the site and head over to “Content Analysis.”
Plug your keyword or seed topic into the search box and hit “Search.” From there, scroll down until you get to the section with the heading “Popular Topics for Content Related to…”
Here we can see the most popular topics for the keyword, which give us a good idea where we can go with further ideas. For instance, a post about beginner baking tips would probably land really well.
To get different stats, don’t forget to filter by date (scroll back up the top to find that filter).
Plus, for more general ideas on trending topics you can use, head to the “Trending Now” tab and filter the information by your industry. Below, the content is focused on trending stories in “Business” within the last 24 hours.
5. Read Competitor Blogs
Your competitors’ blogs are good benchmarks for success, but you also can get lots of ideas from them and add your personal spin.
Look at these blogs, especially solid ones, and see what they’re up to. What have they been writing about recently? Which posts are getting a ton of engagement?
Grab some good ideas for yourself, but remember: Never copy.
6. Search Quora for Questions
Quora is a great resource for discovering what trends and topics people are interested in right this second.
To find popular questions people are asking about topics in your industry (and whether they’ve been answered!) do a quick search.
First, type in your keyword in the search bar. A list of topics will pop up underneath.
Click on any of these to go to an overview page. You can also click on the bottom text that says “Search: [your topic].”
On this page, you can filter results to see the questions asked and which ones are most popular. You can also see how many people are following questions – this can help you determine which topics might get a better response.
Any of these questions would make great blog topics to address, especially if you have unique answers.
7. Use Keyword Explorer
If you want a quick way to brainstorm blog ideas, head to Moz’s Keyword Explorer and do a search.
An easy way to grab blog ideas is to search for a specific keyword and then check out the “Keyword Suggestions” page.
On that page, go to the first drop-down box and select “are questions” to only display keyword suggestions that are in question form. You’ll end up with a long list of blog ideas to address. You can sort them by relevancy and search volume, too. Score!
8. Crowdsource Blog Ideas
Your audience knows what they want to see from you. Why not ask them directly what that is?
You can do this on social media by posting a poll. Or, it can be as simple as asking your followers what they want to see and inviting them to comment. Most people like this type of transparency, and will be thankful when you dedicate a whole post to their suggested topic. That’s a great trust-builder.
9. Do an Interview
If you’re stumped for blog ideas, tap someone else’s brain and get into their headspace.
Interview somebody knowledgeable from within your industry. Get the lowdown on their secrets for success. Or, quiz them about their favorite creative tools, their process, or the advice they would give their younger selves.
Avoid going the boring route by asking unique questions for fresh insights.
10. Blog for a Niche in Your Target Audience
Here’s another great angle for repurposing or rewriting old posts: try writing them for a different niche audience.
For instance, a post about baking tips for hobby bakers could be morphed into tips for hopeless bakers who want to improve. Similarly, a post about baking for health nuts could go further. It could be repurposed as a post with tips or advice for vegan bakers.
Just make sure the niche you’re writing for isn’t too niche – otherwise, nobody will find the post useful.
11. Approach the Positive/Negative Side
Don’t forget to explore both sides of a story when coming up with blog ideas. This means flipping the coin and looking at a topic from the opposite point of view.
For instance, “X Baking Mistakes You’re Making Right Now” could become “X Baking Techniques You’re Getting Right.” “The Worst Content Marketing Advice We’ve Ever Heard” could become “The Best Content Marketing Advice You Need to Hear.”
12. Write in a Different Format
This one is pretty straightforward: Take a topic you already wrote about. Now, rewrite it for a new format.
For instance, turn an old blog post that performed well into an infographic. Expand on a list-based post and transform it into a long-form guide. Use your imagination and keep things useful for best results.
13. Write a Parody Post
Who doesn’t love a little humor? Spice up your blog roster with a brief break from serious topics. Lighten things up with a parody post based on clichés, jokes, or common mistakes or misconceptions in your industry.
Look at this post from Copyblogger about the anatomy of a web writer for inspiration. It’s mainly a useful guide, but they added some tongue-in-cheek humor that’s a nice change of pace:
14. Make a List of Best Blogs/Articles from Around the Web
You’ve got go-to blogs you rabidly read, plus resources you navigate to over and over when you’re in a pinch. Share these with the world for a top-notch, useful blog post.
You can even create a blog series that splits up your must-visit link list by topic, with one topic covered per blog. I.e., expand your favorite writing links into multiple posts, like “My Top 10 Favorite Writing Tools” followed by “15 of the Best Writing Blogs I Read Daily.”
15. Go Behind-the-Scenes
Getting personal is always a good idea on your blog. It makes you, and your business by extension, seem more real, approachable, and trustworthy.
In this vein, do a “behind-the-scenes” post (or series of posts) that explores the inner-workings of your brand. Do an office tour, write features on your staff members, or even show how you get things done day-to-day.
16. Do “Best-of” Round-Ups with Your Past Posts
Once you start amassing a library of blog posts, you can use these for new post ideas.
Go into your archives and see which topics you’ve given a lot of attention to. If you’ve covered plenty of different angles for a certain topic, do a “round-up” post that puts all the best blogs on that subject together in one handy place.
This is incredibly useful for visitors looking for specific information. They’ll spend a lot of time clicking links to posts in the round-up, browsing information, and getting all your expertise on the subject.
The best part? You can do scores of round-up blogs if you have a trove of quality content about a variety of subjects.
17. Pull from Blog Comments
You probably follow your blog comments closely, but did you know they could be fodder for blog ideas?
Look at the questions visitors are asking, the discussions that may be happening, or the related topics that are raised. Pull ideas from these comments and address them in a fresh blog.
If a reader had a question you answered briefly in the comments, you can also reference this experience. Expand on the answer and the topic further in the post.
You can also head to industry authority blogs and check out their comment sections with the same aim. See what people are talking about, then use that for blog ideas.
18. Search for Topic Variations on Google
On your search for blog ideas for writers, don’t forget to hit up Google. A quick search can help you immensely if you’re totally blank.
Type your keyword into Google, then scroll all the way to the bottom. There you’ll find “Searches related to…” that can give you some quick ideas in a pinch.
Look at these great ideas for “how to bake a cake:”
19. Mine Twitter Chats
If you want the down-low on what people in your immediate network are talking about – stuff you could potentially write about – head to Twitter and find out the scuttlebutt (for non-word nerds, that means “gossip”).
Check popular hashtags, including industry chats and topics. What questions are people asking? What topics are popping up over and over? Keep a notepad and pen handy while you do your research, and jot down your discoveries. These can be turned into great blog ideas that are of-the-moment.
For example, here’s what our own Twitter Chat #ContentWritingChat brings up in Twitter search.
20. Have an Opinion!
It’s better to have an opinion than to blindly (and blandly) go along with the status quo. Readers don’t necessarily need your unbiased rehash of hot-button issues in your industry.
What’s more interesting? Your personal take on these matters.
Don’t be afraid to have a point of view and assert it. This could win you more readers and more trust than if you stayed safely in your lane.
So, shake things up a little bit. Try being a contrarian in your industry. Don’t just churn out blog ideas; create blogs that have your personal stamp all over them. Don’t just say something – say something with passion.
Turn to Our Blog Ideas for Writers and Get Creating
Hopefully, these blog ideas for writers have switched on that light bulb in your brain and gotten you excited to create. Maybe you already have 10 or 15 new ideas jotted down, or maybe you have a bunch swimming around in your brain ready to be fleshed-out.
Whatever you do, remember you can’t reinvent the wheel. Nobody is an idea powerhouse 24/7. Consider this your helpful little nudge to get you going. After that, picking up speed is entirely up to you.
At Express Writers, we like to think of ourselves as content creation genies. If you need fresh ideas and a fresh content approach, see how we can help.