Your blogging journey is about to take a massive shift (<< yes, that says shiFt 😏 …)
In my last blog post you learned how to pick your most profitable blog niche to help increase your passive income. Today I’m covering how to brainstorm blog post ideas for beginners.
No more trying to remember that genius random topic you thought of before you went to bed last night.
No more trying to figure out how you’re going to squeeze random affiliate links into your blog post.
No more feeling overwhelmed at the thought of having to come up with the next 12-24 blog post ideas for this quarter.
No more thinking “ok wow i really got off topic..” or even “i don’t know how to make money with my topic.”
No more guessing what keywords to use.
Can someone say #bloggerproblems.
Brainstorming content ideas is an essential part of blogging. But it’s also wildly overlooked when it comes to learning (and teaching) how to blog.
But not anymore.
You’re going to learn how to brainstorm your blog post topics in a strategic way so you can lead your readers to your offers.
- Define the ONE THING your target audience wants.
- List Pillar topics: broader topics that they would be searching for based on what they want.
- Narrow it down through this brainstorming keyword research tool. Do this for several topics.
- Pick your top 3 favorite topics and make them your pillar posts.
- From those main topics, list sub heads and products to recommend during those posts.
- Repeat your keyword research from THOSE topics.
- Schedule your posts.
1. Define ONE thing your target audience wants
The first thing you HAVE to do is define your target audience. Without knowing your target audience, it’s VERY hard to know what they want and desire.
Which is the root of figuring out their roadblocks and how you can help them.
Knowing your target audience isn’t enough, you have to write the RIGHT audience.
So let’s get a little psychological…
There are 3 phases your audience goes through on their journey. (there’s more than that, but we’re keeping things simple around here 🙂
Phase 1 – looking to learn – these are educational long posts on broader topics.
Phase 2 – looking to solve a problem they’ve run into – these are usually tutorials on how to achieve a specific result. Or how-to’s addressing how to solve a specific problem.
Phase 3 – aware of their problem and how to solve it, they are shopping for a solution.
You want to write your blog posts targeting these specific phases.
you may also like: 4 powerful strategies to find your most profitable blog niche
2. List pillar topics based on what they want
Within your categories, make a list of the big ideas that your target audience would be searching for based on what they want.
These are going to be your pillar post topics. Pillar posts are a deeper look into a broader topic and typically searched for by people looking to learn something new. Think “ultimate guide to…” kind of posts.
Ultimate guides are like the first baby steps right before taking the plunge into the internet rabbit hole. And we all know how it goes after that.
It’s now up to you to nourish the reader’s newly-obsessed-drooling-over-the-screen thirst for knowledge.
BUT….They’re interest is still budding and not ready to buy. In fact, they aren’t even aware of any potential problems they’ll run into along the way.
They are literally just looking for more information.
So ask yourself… what do my readers want the MOST? and start creating your list.
Are the ideas starting to flow and inspiration is hitting you like a giant lighting bolt?!
GOOD! Don’t stop there. Let’s make these ideas profitable!
check this one out: How to Make Kick-ass Blog Graphics from Free Stock Photos
3. Narrow down your topic with this brainstorm keyword research tool
Next, you need to use a keyword research tool.
There are some free options that are decent but limited (like ubersuggest).
Some REALLY robust yet expensive ones like SEMrush (plans starting at $119/month… yikes!).
Or you can use an affordable one that’s pretty robust like Keysearch. DING DING DING… total winner in my book. Can’t beat that!
note: Use this link and the code KSDSC to get 20% off (they don’t offer this on their site). And that’s not just for the first month, but every month after! That makes it less than Netflix…. And about the same cost as canva… just sayin’ 🤷🏻♀️.. When it comes to keyword research tools, you can’t beat that.
The thing I love about keysearch — (well, there’s a lot I love about it, but this feature is pretty awesome) — is the fact that one of the tools for brainstorming session help you find more focused keywords when you’re brainstorming your blog topics.
I have an more detailed tutorial on this in my blog post brainstorm workshop which is in my 6 day profitable blogging challenge.
When you search for the right keywords, it narrows down your focus for you. This is why I suggest starting with a broader topic. PLUS, It displays both the volume of searches and the competition of the keyword and it gives the keyword term a score. The lighter the green, the better and blue is GOLD. Stay away from the orange and red if you have a new blog.
Doing your keyword research for your pillar posts FIRST is the best strategy I’ve found to eliminate any back and forth research.
Trust me, nothing is more exhausting in blogging than planning out all 12 blog posts for the entire quarter and having to go back and redo your list. All because you didn’t plan for the right keywords to begin with.
4. Pick your 3 favorite pillar topics
Now that you’ve done your keyword research and you know EXACTLY what keyword phrases you’re going to use for your blog posts, pick just 3 of them.
yep, just three. Remember, we’re planning for the quarter, so you just need one per month.
5. Create your subtopics
Then you’re going to do a quick outline of your subtopics for those posts. This does not need to be in depth. Just list the subtopics you’re going to cover.
Keep in mind, this is a good way to introduce/address potential problems. Because these subtopics are going to be your future posts that … dun, dun, duuuuunnn…. Solve a problem! And those are called Answer Posts.
6. Do you keyword research for your subtopics
So once you have your subtopics for your pillar posts braisntormed, go back to keysearch and do more key words research for THOSE topics. Remember, those are for people who are looking to solve a specific problem.
Now you need to brainstorm ALL the ways you can make money from your blog. Affiliates, ads, digital products and services are the best ways to get started with this.
Then, from everything you brainstormed so far, what are specific products or services that directly solves those potential problems?
In my last blog post I shared with you a free money making brainstorm sheet. You’re going to want to go grab that for this.
Make a list of recommendations and you can write blog posts on. Focus on these specific products to make direct sales of your own products or services or affiliate sales from affiliate links.
The point of doing this keyword research is to make sure you get ranked and found in search results. So it’s imperative that you do not skip this step! Trust me, i used to skip this step and it got me nowheres!
7. Schedule your blog posts
Now that you know how to brainstorm your blog posts strategically, you can schedule your blog posts!
Make a list of things you need to do on a daily basis, weekly basis, and quartly basis. I made one in Airtable and you can get a template of this in the 6 day profitable blogging challenge.
Then you can drop them in your content calendar. you can use google calendar or the calendar in a tool like Airtable.
4 tips to leave with you…
1. If you are a beginner, publish new content once a week. That gives you plenty of time to market your blog after it’s published before you go back to writing again. But it’s still consistent enough to bring in traffic.
2. Another tip is to do all this brainstorming in one session to get your initial topics down. Do the outline and more in-depth research as you write each of your topics. That keeps it fresh in your mind and prevents you from feeling burnout before you start writing your blog posts.
3. Plan your blog posts one quarter at a time. I’ve tried to do a whole year and I felt VERY overwhelmed. Also, the keywords you choose now that you plan to write about later, might not have a good score as when you first did your research.