13 Ways to Create Unique, Original Blog Content
One of the biggest struggles for bloggers who are pushing for growth is the ability to publish unique content. With millions of other blogs out there it can seem at times that every worthwhile topic has already been sufficiently covered.
Quality, original content is one of the biggest factors in blogging success. Take a look at the blogs you read on a daily basis. Most likely you choose to read them because you like the articles they provide that you can’t get at other blogs.
Of course, not every post you publish has to be ground-breaking. However, you do need to separate yourself from other bloggers in order to attract and keep readers.
Here are 13 ways you can create unique content that will help you to stand out.
1. Be Independent
One common method of generating ideas is to see what other bloggers are writing about and what topics are creating a lot of interest. This can be a helpful way to come up with ideas, but often you’ll find that the finished product isn’t very original. Sometimes you may be able to put a new spin on an old subject, but your most creative ideas are unlikely to come from other blogs. We should all be actively reading on a regular basis, but don’t make your daily reading the primary source of your new content generation.
2. Get Personal
Write from your personal experiences. I’m sure you have a lot of experiences that relate to the subject of your blog, and your own experiences are going to be more unique than some other things you could be writing about. One of the reasons there is so much repetitive content in the make money blogging niche is that a lot of people write about what they read from others, rather than writing from their own experiences. A few of my most popular blog posts recently, including How to Set Up a Domino Effect of Traffic, have come directly from my own experiences.
Yesterday I published an article about Brainstorming Techniques for Bloggers, so I won’t get into techniques here. If you hope to regularly create quality, unique articles brainstorming is a must. It’s one of the most effective ways to create your own ideas and stand out.
4. Keep a Journal
As you are coming up with ideas it’s important to write everything down. An idea journal is ideal because it gives you one place to keep all of your ideas and incomplete thoughts and projects. It’s very easy to forget your ideas if they are not written down. With a journal you’ll always have at least a few potential posts waiting to be written. Without keeping a journal you’re more likely to feel like you have nothing unique to write about, and resort to creating the same kind of content that every other blog is using.
5. Keep an Open Mind
Don’t eliminate an idea for a potential blog post if it doesn’t come together right away. Take a look at some of the other ideas you have written down and see if you can combine ideas to make a more complete article. Some of your best ideas will probably take a little extra work to formulate into a good post.
6. Take a Stand
Some of the most unique, and often the most frequently-visited, blog posts go against conventional thinking or oppose the majority opinion. Try writing from a perspective that doesn’t go along with everyone else, and you’re guaranteed to be more unique than the others.
If you’ve been blogging for any significant length of time you probably have a number of older posts that could be expanded upon. Occasionally go back through your archives and look for posts that could be the staring block for new and separate ideas, or look for those that lend themselves to be updated. You may have written a post in the past that covered a somewhat general topic. See if you can focus in on one specific aspect of the article to find new ideas.
8. Dig Deeper
Write about a little-known aspect of something that is covered a lot. Find a hot topic in your niche that you know well. While other bloggers are just writing about basic, general information, go one step further and give your readers information that they are not finding anywhere else. If the topic is already getting a lot of interest and you’re able to provide more detail and knowledge than others, you are likely to benefit from a jump in traffic.
9. Know Your Subject
Without substantial knowledge, all you will be able to write about is basic information. You don’t have to be an expert on the subject right now, but you at least need to be willing to constantly work on improving your knowledge so that you can eventually get to this point (and you need to have some patience until you get there).
10. Solve Problems
One of the best ways to create unique content is to focus on solving the problems of your readers. If they are struggling with a problem, they obviously aren’t aware of a suitable solution or they wouldn’t have the problem in the first place. If you can provide that solution you’ll be the first to do so, and they’ll remember you.
11. Act Quickly
Don’t sit on your best ideas, someone else may beat you to the punch. About a month ago I wrote what I thought was a pretty good post, saved it, and got it ready to be published in a week or so. Literally the next day I saw an almost identical post on a very popular blog. My post has never been published and I’ll now have to do some touch ups if it’s ever going to be used. If I had acted quicker, mine would have come first and I wouldn’t have missed out on a good opportunity.
12. Plan Ahead
Sitting down at the computer with 15 minutes to create and publish a new blog post is almost guaranteed to force you into using rehashed ideas. By planning ahead you can come up with ideas and lay out your blogging schedule. It can still be flexible, but it helps to have things laid out, and to have a few emergency posts ready to go at any time. This will give you the time you need to make sure that your content is unique before it is published.
I know this is somewhat in contradiction to my point about acting quickly. It’s a fine line (one that I am still working on). There needs to be sufficient planning to allow for the best quality posts to be created, but you also need to have the flexibility to push the plan aside temporarily when a great idea comes up.
13. Give Yourself Some Freedom
Do you post on a regular schedule? While I think regular posting is in general a good practice, it can at times hurt your creativity. If you don’t have anything worthwhile posting, take a little bit more time than usual to develop your thoughts.
Don’t put yourself in a box as far as what topics you can and can’t write about. Give yourself the freedom and flexibility to move with your ideas.
What other methods do you use to develop unique content?
Published October 2nd, 2007 by Steven Snell