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How to Think Up Original Topics For Guest Posts

I was asked last night how I think up topics for posts when I am writing freelance or guest posts. It can be tricky but I did come up with an analogy that I think works to explain how I deal with it.

Think of each place you post articles to as a different friend. It shouldn’t be too difficult as each blog will have a person or group of people associated with it, and will usually have a distinct audience.

If you are chatting to one friend then go and talk to another then normally you will not talk about exactly the same things. There might be some overlap, they are your friends after all, but if you are anything like me you will have friends with diverse interests. I talk to one group of people about motor sport, and I have my geeky friends and my photography buddies.

So right away if you treat writing venues like you would your friends you can see they each require you to talk about something different.

What about when they topics are similar?

Well like I say above, sometimes subjects overlap but as they do with friends they will not be identical. My motor sport conversations might be about Formula 1, or they could be about speedway or super bikes. With photography I have friends with Nikon while I have a Canon, they might prefer gig photography while I take landscapes and city shots. My geeky friends could be gamers or internet nuts. Even when talking about the internet, are they corporate types or more into the leisure side.

Just think as if you are going to a party where there will be a certain type of crowd. Soon you will be able to imagine what sort of discussion they will enjoy and you can start allowing the ideas to come.

Does this make any sense?

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Comments

  1. Absolutely, Chris. Makes sense. I take a look at the blog’s posts and what the commenters say beforehand (and before accepting!). That way I get a feel for the environment.

  2. Absolutely, Chris. Makes sense. I take a look at the blog’s posts and what the commenters say beforehand (and before accepting!). That way I get a feel for the environment.

  3. I haven’t done a lot of guest posting myself, but I have done some and I look at each as another opportunity to stretch myself as a writer. The same way you don’t use the same language in front of your mother as you do in front of ‘the guys’ you write with a slightly different style for each blog.

    I like to understand the voice of a blog where I’ll guest post and try to incorporate some of that voice into my own while guest blogging.

    I think adopting a portion of the blog’s voice can help you connect with its audience, while keeping enough of your own helps set you apart. Hopefully it also leads to growth as a writer by stepping outside your usual writing.

  4. I haven’t done a lot of guest posting myself, but I have done some and I look at each as another opportunity to stretch myself as a writer. The same way you don’t use the same language in front of your mother as you do in front of ‘the guys’ you write with a slightly different style for each blog.

    I like to understand the voice of a blog where I’ll guest post and try to incorporate some of that voice into my own while guest blogging.

    I think adopting a portion of the blog’s voice can help you connect with its audience, while keeping enough of your own helps set you apart. Hopefully it also leads to growth as a writer by stepping outside your usual writing.

  5. Hi Chris.

    Thanks for the great thoughts. I too am considering approaching other blogger to guest post on their blogs. In fact I’ve written to a few and am awaiting their reply.

  6. Hi Chris.

    Thanks for the great thoughts. I too am considering approaching other blogger to guest post on their blogs. In fact I’ve written to a few and am awaiting their reply.

  7. It makes sense Chris, especially the thinking of going to a party and the discussion there. I, however, m a bit confused about the different friend thingy, that works if the niche is different but suppose if one’s blogging about writing and he’s to make the guest post on same. Gets a bit perplexed, but I’d have to agree with the first statement to be tricky.

  8. It makes sense Chris, especially the thinking of going to a party and the discussion there. I, however, m a bit confused about the different friend thingy, that works if the niche is different but suppose if one’s blogging about writing and he’s to make the guest post on same. Gets a bit perplexed, but I’d have to agree with the first statement to be tricky.

  9. @Michael – The target audience is critical, definitely a good idea Michael

    @Steven – Yes I modify my style depending on the venue too. You have to fit into the blog or publication you are writing for :)

    @Amrit – Also offer your guest posting services over at the blog forum

    @BlogOxide – Well if I think of Brian and Darren, both are interested in writing but in a slightly different way. What I write for each will have to take account of what is expected and interesting to them and their audiences.

  10. @Michael – The target audience is critical, definitely a good idea Michael

    @Steven – Yes I modify my style depending on the venue too. You have to fit into the blog or publication you are writing for :)

    @Amrit – Also offer your guest posting services over at the blog forum

    @BlogOxide – Well if I think of Brian and Darren, both are interested in writing but in a slightly different way. What I write for each will have to take account of what is expected and interesting to them and their audiences.

  11. Hi Chris.

    Thanks for the forum link. I’ll just post a message there.

  12. Hi Chris.

    Thanks for the forum link. I’ll just post a message there.