Blow away the overwhelm or writer’s block with this big, bad seed list of blog prompts!
Blogging can be an effective way to flesh out your business’ online presence, engage with prospective and current customers, bolster your brand and reputation, strengthen SEO, and more. (Plus, it can be a lot of fun! And who doesn’t need a creative outlet?)
Blogging 101 – The Basics
Keep these best practices in mind as you create your blog post. Sometimes it’s easier to get started if you have some guardrails….
Always Include the Following in Your Blog Posts
- Heading 1 and Heading 2 tags. Goal: Improve readability and SEO.
- Text formatting like bulleted/numbered lists, bolding, italicizing and blockquoting. Goal: Improve scannability and provide text style variation.
- Imagery (pictures, graphs, etc.), tables, video. Audio is good, too. Goal: Break up a page of just text and provide some visual interest/variation.
- Backlinks and crosslinks. Goal: Point to other places in your website that you want folks to see; link to related web content (like social media platforms).
More Pro Tips
- Open links to content and to outside of your website in new browser tabs. This includes attachments, assets and third-party sites/platforms. You want to make it easy for people to stay in your website.
- Call for reader participation. Be explicit. Ask open-ended questions. Request input or feedback. Remind them that there’s a Comments section.
- Create a series out of these prompt ideas. For example, create a periodic series of posts featuring interviews with your best clients, or a monthly gratitude practice post that acknowledges all the good things that have transpired. This facilitates planning and gets even more mileage out of your blogging efforts. (It’s easier to start writing if you already have a seed of an idea!)
- Start with an outline. It’ll give you structure and direction. You may find that it’s best to write the title after drafting your post.
- Be consistent; create an editorial calendar. Map out posts so you know what workload to anticipate and when. This helps you budget (time and money) and build rapport with readers.
Blog Post Seed List
The suggestions below are intended to jumpstart your blogging. While grouped to help bring some order to the chaos of a long list, some post ideas could fit in multiple categories. So, take a prompt and run with it!
Announcements & Updates
- Events – Use your post as a landing page with a link off to the RSVP page. Or, use it to bring more attention to an event you’ve posted elsewhere (and then link off to it).
- New Content – Promote your new video/resource/product page/etc. or revamped website. Lead people to the new stuff. Give them a tour so to speak.
- New Offering – Launching a product, service or location? Announce it, VIP-style.
- Newsletter – Recap recent happenings and announce near-term noteworthy tidbits.
- News Flash – Share company updates, or post your press releases to your site.
Brand & Culture
- Community Involvement – Share ways you’re helping out in your area or industry. Highlight how you’re supporting a cause. Great for humanizing a business.
- Differentiators – Explore how your biz isn’t like your competitors. Why do you stand out? What sets you apart? How are you better? Why should people flock to you?
- Good Ol’ Rant – This is a free-form stream of consciousness on a topic of your choice. Do this in an authentic-but-professional way (as you’re representing your biz).
- Gratitude – Give thanks for the good stuff. Appreciate “wins.” Spread some positivity.
- Inspiration – Impart words of wisdom or motivation. Sometimes people are looking for a little boost.
- Intention-Setting – Lay it out there. Say how you want your business, program, campaign or clients (or whatever) to be, relate or do. Declare an underlying purpose.
- Points of Pride – What’s making your chest puff with pride? Non-braggingly, share.
- Response to Current Events – Show your biz is keeping up with what’s going on in the world around it. Underscore your understanding of critical issues. It can let readers know your position, values, priorities.
People & Team
- Interview/Q&A – Talk to others and relay those convos via your blog. You can write this as a narrative or — even quicker and easier — as question/answer couplets.
- Kudos – Shower a person or biz partner with praise; explain why he or she earned it.
- Meet the Team – Introduce each team member in a post that’s a bit more fleshed out and personal than their professional bio (that may be elsewhere on the site).
- Personal Profile – Do a feature on a person who has significance to your biz or industry. This could be a mentor, advisor, innovator, historical figure, etc.
Plans & Progress
- 5-Year Plan – Roadmap for your biz’s future. Call out your priorities and motivators.
- Achievements – Toot your own horn! Feature milestones you’ve reached, awards you’ve won, important rankings you’ve attained.
- Aims & Aspirations – Got dreams and goals? Tell folks what you want to accomplish.
- Reflections – Consider lessons learned and discuss inferred meaning.
- A-Musing – Give commentary on a topic: its meaning, how it connects to other things, its broader impact. This is an Op Ed; it’s ok to give your opinion.
- Curated Gallery – Ideal for visual artists who speak in images more comfortably than words. Showcase your work while providing context.
- Fortunately/Unfortunately – This is a fun way to point out pitfalls of competitors/circumstances/etc. and how your biz is the solution. It follows a pattern in which you make an “unfortunately” statement then a “fortunately” statement. Repeat until you’ve told a story or made your point.
- Imagine if…. – Explore a possible future. Fantasize about an alternate reality. Discuss how, if you change just one variable, outcomes could be better (then pitch your business as the bearer of that solution).
- Listicle – Take a cue from Buzzfeed and create a list of something. It can be any number of items, just be specific. (e.g., Say “17 Reasons to Get Organic Kibble” rather than “15+ Reasons….”)
- Photo Essay – Great option if you’re a visual artist or storyteller of any kind. Pictures catch people’s attention immediately. This is a powerful way to convey info.
- Round’em Up – Rally around a well-defined topical theme. Your post should articulate what the theme is and why it matters, as well as explain why each item is special/included.
- Storytime – Enchant readers. Your goal may be to entertain, or to push an agenda.
- Today’s the Day – Write something related to a holiday, “national day of __”, “__ history month”, etc.
- Top 10 – You know this one. Run with it. Just make it relevant to your biz.
Compare & Critique
- Before & After – Show progress between then and now. Timelines and before-and-after and historical-vs-present-day pics work great in this sort of post.
- Comparison – Pit A against B. Or show how A and B differ. This may take the form of comparing your biz/product to competitors or your products against one another.
- Review/Testimonials – Everyone likes reviews. You’ve done the tedious job of researching and testing something out for them. You’re giving them food for thought, saving them time or giving them direction.
- Trends – Discuss patterns you’re noticing. Draw a line from the trends to what they mean going forward.
- Value Proposition – Propose the merits of doing something vs not doing something.
Guide, Inform, Teach
- Education – Straight out teach readers something. Pass on knowledge in a narrative.
- FAQs – Turn each A into a post that addresses the Q.
- Follow the Leader – Guide readers through a process or provide actionable info.
- Guided Meditation – This is an awesome one if you’re in the health and wellness sector! It makes for a great audio/audio-over-sound-visualization post.
- How-To – Show step-by-step how to do something. Include pictures/video plus written instructions. This is ideal for DIY projects, teaching software, etc.
- PSA, aka Knowledge is Power – This kind of post is less about your biz and more about informing or awareness raising about a specific topic. Its intention is to serve the public good, not yours (though it can certainly offer opportunity to also benefit you — but that’s not the main thrust).
- Recipe – Another easy win for health and wellness, food and beverage, travel and culture or lifestyle businesses. Recipes can also be woven in to other content, like a recounting of a recent trip.
- Tips & Tricks – Give pro tips on how to do or make something better/faster/cheaper/easier/etc.
- Are You A ____? – These are great posts because they immediately involve readers. They get readers to picture themselves as something or to join a “team.” Show how you can help that type of person.
- Contest – Pitch a contest and then (in a separate post!) showcase the winners.
- Good Client/Bad Client – Outline what makes an ideal customer. This can help prospects self-qualify, save you time and effort by preparing clients proactively, and facilitate account management.
- Marquee Customer– Spotlight a customer who has significance to your biz. This could be a success story, testimonial, personal profile, etc.
- Survey Says – Create a poll or questionnaire post. Great for gathering feedback.
- This or That – Ask your readers to make a choice. This could be just for fun, or it could have real impact — like which features to add to your product, services to discontinue, or charities to sponsor.
Help & Resources
Use the handy printer-friendly version below to keep this list close by. (Note: This post is slightly different than the linked-to take-away. I’ve added more post prompts, refined some of the descriptions and linked to some examples.)
For more goodies, swing by the Resources page. And, of course, you can always reach out to me for help. (I write, edit and advise on blogging as part of my service offerings.)
And, be sure to stay connected by subscribing to my email list and via social media. This is how I tell the world about new blog posts and Resources that will help them strike back at their business challenges.
What are your favorite blog post ideas? Share your go-to prompts, or the ones that make the kind of posts you want to read. Thanks!