How do I get new blog post ideas?
How do I quickly outline lots of blog posts?
How do I find new ways to make my blog stand out?
How do I attract new readers to my blog?
How do I beat my competition with rare blog posts or topics they don’t talk about?
If any of the questions above ever crossed your mind, you’re not alone.
Most bloggers are always looking for a competitive advantage or trying to stay one step ahead of the competition.
As you probably already know, the blogging game is all about IDEAS.
Whether you’re a newbie blogger or a veteran, you probably already have quite a number of ideas about your niche.
The problem? You have so many half-baked ideas to explore that you don’t know where to start.
The solution? Use dictation blogging to quickly get lots of ‘starter ideas’ for blog posts you can develop and polish later on.
In as little as 10 minutes, you can literally come up with dozens of awesome blog post ideas. Quickly coming up with blog post ideas is one of the awesome benefits of dictating your text instead of typing it out.
Your starting point:
You also probably have researched your niche quite a bit.
This is a good place to start. A lot of bloggers actively compile ‘idea lists.’ Some quickly bookmark information they stumble on.
Start with your ideas list and saved notes
Go through your ideas list, check out your saved notes, and scroll through your bookmarks. If you’re using Google Chrome, you can download a bookmark search tool that will help you find your bookmarks through keywords searches.
Pick out the most interesting topics
At this point, you probably are going to see tons of materials.
Don’t get scared.
Of all the information you’ve noted down and the more bookmarks you’ve saved, maybe 10% are actually interesting enough. Maybe 1/10th would have enough information or would be relevant to what you know about your niche or the things you’re interested in.
Clarify your list
At this point, you have your ideas and your topic lists as well as pages on your bookmark list. Clarify these in terms of actual questions or queries. Read the resource and figure out the first questions that come to mind.
You have to do this with all the items that you have gathered.
If you need help on how to turn keywords or topics into questions, try this free tool.
Load your topics and questions of interest into Google’s search box
Pay close attention to what Google suggests.
This is called auto complete.
Pay attention to the list of topics or related questions that Google suggests you search. Copy and paste the most interesting and relevant of these.
Cluster these topics and questions with the initial items that you were searching for.
Look for related searches
Look at the bottom of each search result and copy and paste the most relevant related searches. When you search for anything on Google, it will give you related search terms at the bottom.
Do any of those make sense? Do any of those flesh out or further develop the topics or questions that you’re interested in?
Set a timer for 10 minutes to brainstorm
This is the most important part. The previous steps should prepare you for this stage.
This is where you will do most of your creative work.
I select 10 minutes for brainstorming because anything longer or setting no time limit at all is counter productive for me.
In fact, a lot of people I know who try to come up with blog post plans end up stuck on a topic or 2. They don’t end up with the dozens of ideas that this technique produces.
You have to put yourself under time pressure so you can push yourself to look as critically and creatively at the pieces of information you’ve gathered to produce many blog post outlines.
Click the start button on your timer and quickly go through the steps below. This is no time to second guess yourself. You’re not looking for perfect material. You just want to get out as many ideas as possible. You want to tease as many of the concepts these idea combinations have.
Don’t dwell on any cluster.
Step #1: Quickly read the questions and topics and summarize the clusters with one title
Read the different one sentence notes or quickly scan through the web pages and focus on their subheadings.
What are the titles that come to mind?
Now, of all those titles, which one is the most complete or all encompassing of that cluster? Write that down.
Step #2: Read out each question and dictate short sentence answers
At this point, you should be dealing with clusters of notes, content, and URLs that you have opened in in separate tabs and topics and questions. These should all be organized under titles.
Read out each question and dictate a short one or two sentence answer. Dictate any insights that come to mind and also take verbal notes about each of these items.
Set a timer for 10 minutes and record your dictation.
This technique works because it applies The Pomodoro Method for boosting productivity.
Step #3: Read out each topic and dictate questions that come to mind
Again, put all these questions within the same cluster under that single title.
Step #4: Answer your short questions to the best of your ability
You’re not looking for a complete answer. You’re not even looking for the absolute best answer. You just need to come up with an answer and then move on to the next question. If you can come up with several answers, go ahead and dictate that.
The key here is to dictate as much different information or different directions as possible using short sentences. Remember, you’re not dictating the whole blog post. You’re just dictating in short bursts to jog your creativity and memory and get all those ideas and concepts out of your head and speak them out.
Once this material is transcribed, you will then have a lot of materials to fine tune.
Quickly go through the steps above and avoid this fatal mistake
The worst thing that you could do at this point is to second guess yourself. You’re second guessing yourself when you’re thinking that your answer or your question is not quite right or, worse yet, not perfect.
You’re not looking for perfection.
You’re not even looking for the very best answer or even an average answer. What you’re doing is you just want to get it all out. You want to get the ideas, insights, and inspirations that are in your head into an audio format.
You just want to speak it out as quickly as possible. Don’t stop. Don’t slow down. If you run out of inspiration, go on to the next cluster, and then the next cluster after that. Stop recording when 10 minutes is up.
The key here is to go as quickly through the steps as possible within 10 minutes. Let me tell you, the first few times you do this, you’re not going to get everything down in 10 minutes. But with enough practice, you will be able to go through all the topics and question clusters that you have organized in your notes.
What to expect from the transcription of your ideas
When you get your blog post idea dictation transcribed, you should have dozens of potential dictation outlines. At this point, you’re just dictation rough “outlines” of outlines. You’re giving yourself the raw materials that you can then polish and grind down into a better form.
Take your time polishing each transcribed outline
I call these proto-outlines because they’re not fully developed outlines.
Far from it. Instead, they’re supposed to give you inspiration as to areas to research, sections to explore, and parts to fill in.
Take your time polishing each proto-outline that you have dictated.
This means adding information, taking stuff out, separating sections, clarifying the outlines so you can verbally fill them out better when you dictate the blog post that’s based on them.
Always remember this fact
Remember that the higher the quality of your outline, the better your dictated blog post will be. It’s not about the length. It’s all about the quality of the outline because it you follow the 9 outline steps for high quality dictated blog posts I’ve shared previously, your outline quality will improve dramatically.
You have to polish each of your proto-outlines using the 9 steps that I’ve described in that blog post.
Pro tip: Polish in waves
Don’t put yourself in the very challenging position of completely and thoroughly polishing all the proto-outlines or outlines of outlines in the transcription of your dictation. That’s an impossible situation. Don’t do it. Don’t even start.
Instead, give yourself time to polish each proto-outline at a time. If you’re stumped or if you hit a wall, go on to the next outline. Work on that a little bit and then go on to the next one after that. I call this polishing “in waves” because you’re switching from outline to outline so you don’t get bored or you don’t cut corners.
At this point, it’s very tempting to just cut out or write whatever in your outline just to be done with it. You’re compromising quality if you do that.
You have to polish these outlines so they can produce effective and high quality valuable blog posts when you dictate them.
Polish in waves and in installments until you are confident that you can use these for dictation. This is a rolling process. This is not the kind of thing that you complete in one sitting. Get that idea out of your head. This is a long term commitment.
Let’s face it, some days, you’re more inspired than others. On certain days, you’re more analytical. The key here is to have such a long list of proto-outlines that when you polish them in waves over several days, you end up with a list of thorough high quality outlines that can produce top notch blog posts when dictated.
Repeat all the steps above after you have dictated all your polished outlines
Once you have dictated the outlines produced by this process, repeat the steps again to come up with even more blog outlines. Using this technique, you will be able to create dozens of long, high quality, and deep impact blog posts in a very short period of time.
How come? You effectively handle the hardest part of the process, which is to come up with ideas in the first place.
Can I produce quality SEO friendly blog posts with this dictation blogging technique?
The short answer is yes. When you’re polishing your outlines, you can plug in questions targeting different keywords that set the overall context of each post. You can actually research your target keywords separately and then reconcile or reword key parts of your outlines so they contain keywords that would give the post you dictate a stronger SEO punch.
The final word
This technique is intended to help you come up with a long list of lengthy blog posts in 10 minutes. Once you have all the ideas fairly categorized and organized, then you polish each of these into outlines that are clear and strong enough for you to dictate.
Using this process, I’m able to create hundreds of blog posts for both clients and the different sites in my blog network. You can do the same.
The key is to always remember that the higher the quality of your outlines, the better your dictated blog posts will be.