A tutorial on generating first blog post ideas

I share the best tips and tricks for generating your first blog post ideas, as well as providing a list of my own ideas for you to pick from. Read on!

You Have a Blog. Now What?

You spent hours upon hours deciding what your new blog will be about.

You’ve tried and tested countless names and picked one that you like.

And you tore your hair out trying to host a new WordPress blog…

…only to now be sat in front of your laptop or desktop, starring at an empty document, not knowing what to write as your first blog post.

It’s frustrating, isn’t it?

First of all, I want to reassure you and say that you are not alone.

As someone who has set up multiple websites and blogs, this feeling is something I’ve grappled with time and time again.

Your first blog post is terrifying.

You’re casting your writing, which to most is a very personal and private thing, out into the world.

Therefore, you want your first blog post to be really, really good.

The pressure builds, decision paralysis sets in, and as a result, you have no idea where to start.

Let’s try and alleviate some of that pressure.

This article will do two things:

  • Provide a list of first blog post ideas
  • Share techniques I use for generating first blog post ideas

So, let’s start exploring the different types of blog posts that there are!

Types of Blog Post Content

An empty pad of paper, ready to start writing your first blog post ideas

Before we dive into a list of ideas, tips, tricks, and techniques, let’s take a step back and understand the different content types of blog posts there are.

You’ve likely encountered several of these before from reading other blogs on the web.

These are:

  • Tutorials (How-to guides)
  • Listicles (Top 10 x for x)
  • Interviews
  • Opinion/thought pieces

There are others, but I’ve found that these are the main four types of content that you’ll find on blogs.

To illustrate, here’s an interview I did with Tania Rascia, another blogger and web developer.

I’ve also written countless tutorials on SitesMonster, such as Getting Started with HTML, and How to Tell if a Website is WordPress.

Follow the link to find a full list of web development, SEO, and content marketing tutorials.

Let’s explore these four content types in greater detail.

Tutorial/How-to Guide Blog Post Ideas

I love writing tutorials and how-to guides.

It could be because my brain is wired to be enjoy more factual writing than creative (I am a web developer, after all!).

Either way, I think tutorials make excellent first blog posts as they are relatively simple to write and offer a huge amount of value to your readers.

  • Provide the greatest amount of value to your readers
  • Google loves them
  • A more factual way of writing, and less creative

Think of a time when you’ve googled how to fix something that’s broken or solve a problem that you’re stuck on.

A screenshot of software and a tutorial

Let’s dive into some tutorial ideas.

The more specific the tutorial, the better. There are so many niche blogs out on the web for a reason, because people are interested in more niche topics.

  • How to Install WordPress on Windows 7
  • The Safest Way to Clean Your Airpods Case
  • How to Use a Custom Background in Zoom
  • The Easiest Way to Shave a Dog

If you want to know how I generated these ideas skip to that section.

Of course, every one of those tutorial ideas are in different niche topics. One is WordPress, one is audio technology, one is software, and the last is dog grooming.

Writing a Tutorial In Your Blog’s Niche

Now, think about your blog’s niche.

I’m hoping you know your blog’s niche quite well, otherwise it’s going to be even more difficult to write about.

If you do, think about problems that you’ve wanted to know how to solve in the past.

For example, let’s say you decide to blog about dog grooming because you own a dog.

You know first-hand the struggles that dog-owners go through on a day-to-day basis.

An example might be that you find it difficult to keep your dog still during the grooming process.

That right there is a great topic to write a tutorial on:

“How to Keep Your Dog Still During Grooming”.

Take a minute to think about some other problems you yourself have experienced in your niche.

Write them down on a sheet of paper.

And then think about how you solved them.

Once you have one solution, break that solution down in to bite-sized steps.

That right there is your first tutorial/how-to guide!

Listicle Blog Post Ideas

Listicles are all the rage these days.

So what is a listicle?

It’s a cute name for an article that lists things, such as the “Top 10 Safest Cars in 2020”, or the “7 Best Yoga Pant Brands for Women”.

You get the idea.

A photo of a hand writing a list

Listicles evolved out of our ever-reduced attention span, and our desire to learn quickly.

We don’t want to read a 3,000-word review on the most Eco-friendly refrigerator.

We just want to be presented with a list of the top 10 Eco-friendly refrigerators, and then make our own minds up.

Some ideas for listicles are:

  • Top 10 Magazines for Wedding Dresses
  • 8 Best Shavers for Small Dogs
  • 52 Of The Best Mindfulness Blogs in 2020
  • 110 Positive Words to Brighten Your Day

What do you notice about those listicle blog post ideas?

They mostly all begin with, or contain, a number.

That’s because listicles are written to be straight to the point. You know exactly what you’re going to get with a listicle.

Think about your blog’s niche.

And think about how you can aggregate things within that niche to be part of a common list.

It might be that your blog is about Art Stationary.

Therefore, you could provide lists of the best brushes, pencils, crayons, oil paints, etc.

And make the most of your niche by being even more specific with your lists.

For example, the:

  • 17 Best Brushes for Detail Painting
  • 15 Best Pencils Under $10
  • 10 Cheapest Brands of Oil Paints

Interview Blog Post Ideas

A photo of two people sat opposite each other, conducting an interview

Interviews are different from the other content types in that they require more upfront effort.

What do I mean by upfront effort?

Well, interviews require large amounts of planning, communication, and organization in order to produce.

Take my interviews. For each one, I have to:

  • Find a suitable interviewee candidate
  • Email the interviewee and ask them kindly for an interview
  • Research them thoroughly (not creepy, I swear)
  • Write a series of interesting questions
  • Send the interviewee the questions
  • Wait a while (could be as long as four weeks) for them to reply
  • Receive their answers via email
  • Format their answers into a blog post
  • Publish the interview
  • Market the interview

Phew! I think I covered all the steps required to publish an interview.

As you can see, that’s a lot of effort required for a single interview.

And let me tell you one important thing about interview posts.

Google does not like them.

Interviews do not rank highly on Google because you’re not targeting a specific keyword.

Humans love reading interviews, however, and they’re a sure-fire way of gaining backlinks.

So, how do you go about finding someone relevant to interview?

First and foremost, they should be some kind of industry leader or have at least done something interesting, otherwise, the interview is going to be fairly boring for your readers.

As a result, the best way to find good interview candidates is through Twitter.

Search for your niche on Twitter and you’ll soon find people who tweet about that particular topic.

Twitter is a good place to start because people who post regularly on Twitter will usually have a social presence and therefore may be more inclined to agree to an interview.

I’ve found the following people produce the best interviews:

  • Entrepreneurs
  • Self-made people
  • Out-spoken people
  • People who have a medium sized following on Twitter or other social media (20,000 – 100,000 followers)

Opinion/Thought-piece Blog Post Ideas

I’ve left this one until last because I didn’t really know what to label this content type. I call them thought pieces, however, opinion pieces also works.

Basically, articles about anything other than the three content types listed above.

For example, I’ve recently written a thought piece on What I Learned From 12 Months of Web Development Blogging.

These types of content are similar to interviews in that they won’t necessarily rank highly on Google, as they don’t target a specific keyword.

A photo of someone typing a thought piece article on a laptop

However, thought pieces still add value, especially if you write about something you have learned while being in your chosen niche field.

Again, within your blog’s niche, you could write about:

  • Something important you have learned that surprised you
  • A problem you overcame
  • How someone can break into your blog’s niche
  • How to get a job in your field
  • What it’s like working/being in your niche
  • How to make money in your niche

How to Generate Your First Blog Post Ideas

Although I’ve provided some example blog post ideas above, the best way for you get started with your first blog post is to generate your own ideas.

Speaking from experience, there are three techniques I use to generate blog post ideas:

  • Google phrases related to my blog’s niche
  • Read other blog posts and take inspiration from them
  • Use a keyword generation tool like Ahrefs

The last one will cost you upwards of $100 per month, although Ahrefs does have a 7 day for $7 trial on right now.

The free option is to use Google. It is, after all, what we’re all trying to rank on, right?

Google

Open up a new browser window and navigate to Google.

Search for a phrase within your blog’s niche.

Let me get you started. Type “How to do in [blog niche]” and hit search.

You’ll get a bunch of results for tutorials within your blog’s niche. You can then take inspiration from those posts and come up with your own first blog post ideas.

The next method I use to generate first blog post ideas is to read.

Yep. You read that correctly.

Take Inspiration From Other Blog Posts

In order to write your first blog post, you must read.

Read other people’s blog posts. Especially other people who write within the same field or niche as your blog.

We’ve all heard that great quote from Pablo Picasso (or was it Steve Jobs?):

“Good artists copy. Great artists steal”.

The same is true when it comes to writing your first blog post. There is absolutely nothing wrong with taking inspiration from other people’s blog posts.

In fact, looking at what other people have written in your field is a very legitimate SEO strategy.

Why?

Because if Google ranks an article highly, then it must be good.

Therefore, you can look at the content of an article and improve it in your own version.

An improvement could be:

  • Writing a more detailed article
  • Creating a better-structured article
  • A more personal approach to the subject

Conclusion

Leave a comment below with some of your methods to generating first blog post ideas.

As always, if you have any questions, comments, or feedback, write to me below. I strive to answer any and all comments left!

See you next time.


🚀 Follow My Journey from 0 to 100,000 Monthly Pageviews!

Starting with this brand-new blog, I'm sharing everything I do to get from 0 pageviews to 100,000 monthly pageviews, every step of the way.
Zero spam, just great content. Unsubscribe at any time.

💬 Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

We will never share your email with anyone else.