Susannah linked up to my post and writes:
‘What Darren doesn’t say is just how to come up with those money-making ideas. He’s clearly got the knack of latching onto current issues appropriate for blogs, but not everyone does.’
That got me wondering – how do the ideas come? I started jotting down a few ideas this afternoon about how I coax ideas for new blogs and posts out of my mind and soon found I had more than a single post on my hands. So here is the first part in my mini series on how to find money making blog ideas:
1. Observe – I am an information junkie. I watch too much TV, read too many books (I never make it to the end though), spend way too much time on the internet, squander hours in the news agents flicking through magazines, spend more time at cafes watching people than eating food and am a sucker for any article, website or conversation that is about ‘trends or predictions‘.
If you want to create a blog that is going to be read by as many people as possible you must be in touch with where as many people are at (or will be at). What are they eating, drinking, doing with spare time, watching on TV, thinking about, lusting after, obsessing about etc. Don’t only observe what others are doing – take a look at your own life, look at your spending paterns, TV watching habits, interests and passions and you might just find a great topic in your own life! I also find that stimulating myself with new sights, sounds, tastes, places, people can also help get the creative juices flowing. Keep a journal (I use a whiteboard and a spreadsheet) of your observations which you can come back to later.
2. Predict – I’ve written about thisbut it is a lesson worth repeating. Think ahead. Ask yourself the question – ‘what will people be searching on the internet for next week, next month or next year?’ This is connected to your observe task. As you read the paper/internet/magazine – keep an eye open for upcoming product developments, events, etc. If you see one start writing about it. It isn’t really a mind blowing suggestion – but I’m amazed at how many bloggers begin blogging about movies and events the day they start rather than two weeks before when the search engines have time to pick them up and index their posts.
So look ahead, write your predictions and hunches about what people will be searching for in your journal and better still start writing some posts (or even start a new blog) on those topics to test how they do in the Search Engines. Be as specific with your posts as possible – for example last year in the lead up to the final show of American Idol 3 I wrote a post titled number 1 on Google for that term. It was a good day and showed me the power of thinking ahead.. The day the winner was announced guess who was (and still is)