By Steve Murphy
Writer’s block is as common to bloggers as athlete’s foot is to, well, athletes. If you find yourself banging your head on your desk in the hopes that a good idea will fall out, please stop. Neurologists frown upon this activity, and there are much better ways to spark your creative genius.
When in doubt, turn to these four resources to help you think of your next great blog post idea:
For content marketers, Quora is simply magical. The three-year-old social discovery start-up aims to be a centralized hub for questions and answers on the web; think Yahoo Answers meets Facebook.
Spending only a few minutes on Quora can provide you with enough content inspiration to last a month. More importantly, you’ll be able to get a sense of the questions your customers are actually asking, not just the content you think they’ll be interested in.
Similar to Quora, LinkedIn Answers helps link professionals with questions to experts who can answer them. The key difference here is that LinkedIn connects you with your existing network and makes it easier to find questions that pertain to your industry.
You can easily sort questions and answers based on date (fresh topics) or relationship (targeted topics). While the quality of questions may not be as high as Quora, LinkedIn answers is an excellent supplement when your search for new ideas is hitting a brick wall.
Wouldn’t it be great if almost all the top blogs on the Internet aggregated their most popular posts in one place? They do, and this place is called Alltop.
Alltop can give you a very diverse cross section of content and help you think of out of the box ideas. For example, you might see a post about a recent movie and then relate the lessons it teaches to your industry.
Your Blog Archives
Sometimes the answer for your content woes is right under your nose.
Sifting through your blog archives might present an opportunity to revive your previously popular blog posts and update them with new facts or a different point of view. As your content marketing progresses, you will likely be able to repurpose a large portion of your old content to reflect your current strategies and goals.