How to Find Your Next Blog Post Idea

July 28, 2020 · 3 min read

Person writing in a book on a wooden desk. Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

Sometimes I don’t know what to write. Without a topic to write about, the words don’t flow.

That’s where idea generation techniques come into play. After reading this, you will know several techniques to generate fresh ideas for your blog posts.

I’m only presenting techniques that I have used, and that worked for me.

Remember: a great blog post helps the reader go from where they are to one step further. Often, just answering a question in as much detail as needed is enough.

You don’t need to write “The ultimate guide to X”.

It’s enough to say: “You want to do X? Here’s how.”

A blog post also isn’t for everyone. It is for people at a particular step in their journey.

You don’t need to teach them everything you know (or everything that can be known). Just enough to go on.

Let’s get started.

The Best Sources Of Blog Post Ideas

I’ve had the best blog posts come from personal experiences and interests:

  • From conversations with coworkers. Coworkers are a fantastic source of blog post ideas. If I have an interesting conversation or if someone asks me an interesting question, I write that down. You can turn many of these ideas into blog posts.
  • From your own problems. If you just solved an interesting problem, teach your readers how to solve it and what you learned.
  • Write a series of articles about a topic you want to learn for yourself. This is what I do with my Gridsome series. Pick something that interests you and write a rough outline of articles that you could write about this. Now, you have blog posts for a few weeks. As you write each post you’re learning more about that topic.
  • A topic you read about and want to dive deeper into. This can be an interesting tweet you saw, or an idea from a book you’ve read.

Side note: I think it’s extremely beneficial to read as a blogger. Read other blog posts, books, fiction and non-fiction. This not only boosts your creativity by giving your mind more topics to think about, but also improves your writing.

When You’re Desperate For An Idea

Here are sources of ideas that can work when none of the ones above work and you need some inspiration:

  • Research what people in your niche find interesting. You can do this by researching Reddit, looking what people ask about on (here are questions people ask about JavaScript on 28 Jul 2020), or from the most faved tweets from you (or someone else): from:kentcdodds min_faves:200
  • Research what people in your niche buy. Find popular courses and look at their contents. That is what people are interested in AND what they pay for.
  • Analyze your previous posts. I’ve got this last idea from Josh Spector. Go through your last posts and you can do the following:

    • Analyze People’s Reactions To Your Previous Posts. What have people asked you about your posts? What did people say on social media about them?
    • Vertically Expand on a Previous Post. Select an individual idea from one of your previous blog posts and expand it in a separate post.
    • Horizontally Expand on a Previous Post. Where are your readers in their journey one step before and after reading your post? Helping them along their way leads to more great post ideas.

Blog Post Ideas Don’t Depend On Creativity

With this post I want to argue that finding blog post ideas is not dependent on creativity, but is a process that you can learn and practice.

The next time you need an idea, pick one of these techniques and try it out!

Let me know how it went on twitter.