How to Brainstorm a Year’s Worth of Blog Topics in Under an Hour

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How to brainstorm a year's worth of blog topics in under an hour

Do you ever feel like you are too close to your business to effectively write about it?

I’ve talked to a number of business owners recently who have told me that they have gotten to such a high level of expertise in their business that it’s become difficult for them to see the smaller picture in order to write blog posts about it.

This mind-mapping exercise will not only help you break down your business into smaller concepts, it will help you generate loads of post ideas in a short amount of time, and, to top it all off, you can use those clusters of post ideas to strategically post in order to support your business goals.

I used a free program called Coggle in order to do this. To use Coggle, click here.

I will show you how I generate my mind-map, from the big picture, to smaller topics, to action steps within each topic, and finally, post ideas.

Step 1: Write down your overall business concept.

Here’s mine:

Screenshot 2015-03-29 11.34.22

Here’s another example from my friend Sara who is a college consultant:

Screenshot 2015-03-29 12.24.00

 

Write down the main thing you help people do.

If you’re an accountant, you could write “Save money by doing your taxes the right way.”

If you’re a life coach, you could write, “Help people find their purpose and passion.

Step 2: Add subtopics.

Here’s my example:

Screenshot 2015-03-29 12.05.11

Here’s Sara’s example:

Screenshot 2015-03-29 12.26.30

Now take the main thing you do for your clients, and brainstorm at least 4 ways in which you help them do it.

Create branches coming out of the main idea for each of your subtopics.

Step 3: Break those subtopics down.

Here’s my example:

Screenshot 2015-03-29 12.10.19

Here’s Sara’s example:

Screenshot 2015-03-29 12.32.54

Your subtopics are still way too big to use as blog posts. You need to take them and break them down even further.

If you struggle with this, ask yourself these questions:

What do I do to help my clients with this?

How do I support them in this process?

What action steps are associated with this sub-topic?

Step 4: Take each of your sub-subtopics and brainstorm at least 3 blog posts you could write about them.

Here’s my example:

Screenshot 2015-03-29 12.15.43

Here’s Sara’s example:

Screenshot 2015-03-29 12.38.52

 

Don’t be afraid to write multiple posts on the same topic.

First of all, it builds some momentum in your blog when people know that they can come back again and again for more insights on the same topic.

Also, the more you write about the same topic, the deeper into it you are forced to go and the more creative you have to become to keep writing about it.

Here are some questions you can keep in mind while doing this:

What do my clients really struggle with in this process?

What questions come up regularly about this action step?

What components of this process tend to trip people up?

See if you can come up with:

  • List posts
  • Tutorial/How-to posts
  • Case study posts of clients you’ve helped in the process
  • Interview posts – either someone interviewing you, or you interviewing a client
  • Posts with a sense of humor

Step 5: Take your blog topics and schedule them strategically

This is where you go from just thinking of blog post topics to actually using them to drive your business goals.

For example, I can take all of my posts on blogging consistently and publish them leading up to launching a blog coaching package that helps people blog consistently.

Sara can choose to publish her college essay posts in a time of year when students are really struggling to write college essays and may be looking for a college counselor to help them with the process.

Ask yourself these questions:

1. What are my business goals for the next 3 months?

2. How can I use my blog posts to get people interested in my services/products?

How to brainstorm a year's worth of blog topics in under an hour - FB

To recap:

1. Write the main way you help clients.

2. Break it down into smaller chunks.

3. Break those chunks down further into action steps.

4. Take an action step and brainstorm blog topics relating to it.

5. Plan to publish those blog posts to align with your business goals.

 

Now, go forth and plan!