As a small business owner, it can be extremely difficult to maintain a blog. Blogs are only useful if they are updated regularly, but devoting time to a blog is not always possible, especially if you don’t have the resources to hire a blogger. But what if I told you that there are places to find free blog content? If you could find free blog posts, would you update more regularly?
The reality is that a blog cannot run on only the blog content ideas listed below. However, these free blog content ideas can help get things going, supplementing your editorial calendar so that your blog is always up to date and fresh. Check out these 15 articles to find free blog posts the next time you’re struggling to find content:
1. Textual interviews with experts
Who knows a lot about your industry? Contact that person and request an interview. People love to be interviewed, and this is one of my favorite sources of free blogging content. It flatters the ego when someone thinks you know enough about a topic to be interviewed. Personally, I always jump at the chance to be interviewed!
Text interviews take the least amount of time because you just send a handful of questions and the person answers them. Think about who in your industry could be of real benefit to your potential customers. For example, if you own a lawn care business, is there a florist in your community who could tell you about the best flowers for different types of soil? Or if you run a bakery, is there a dietitian in your area who can teach you how to add desserts to a healthy diet?
2. Audio / video interviews with experts
If you are willing to devote a little more time, audio or video interviews with experts can also be extremely effective for the same reasons. People love to hear from the experts.
Audio or video interviews can also be cut so that you present small snippets over time, allowing you to expand the free blog content even further. With a text-based interview, a single paragraph answering a question probably doesn’t warrant a stand-alone blog post. But if someone talks for a minute about a specific topic, it can be a very effective standalone video. In fact, there is some data to suggest that shorter videos work better.
So, don’t feel like you have to produce an hour-long video to be effective. Record this long interview, then cut it to use for multiple blog posts (and at the end, share the whole uncut as well).
3. YouTube, Vimeo and other video sites
If you don’t have the time, talent, or interest to record videos, either with experts or on your own, no problem. YouTube, Vimeo, and other video sharing sites are full of great videos to use on your blog – and most people want to you take this content for your blog posts. That’s why they make the integration of videos an option.
Just search for interesting content related to your niche, write a quick intro, and post it. Be careful, however, not to publish videos of your competitors. If you’re a mechanic and post an oil change video that then promotes another store in your community, you’re doing yourself a disservice, no matter how great the content is.
4. Flickr, Instagram and other image sites
Much like video sharing sites, image sharing sites can be a great source of free blog content if you work in a highly visual industry. For example, if you are a wedding planner you can find cool bridal hair images on Flickr and post “100 Unique Ideas for Wedding Hairstyles” or if you are a travel agent you can post “10 Beautiful beaches you have to see to believe. These messages require very little writing on your part.
Note: ALWAYS use uploaded images with a license that allows you to share and credit the work as directed by the owner. If you want to use an image from the general pool, first get written permission.
The comments section of my blog is one of my favorite places to find free blog posts. Often times, members of my community will ask me great questions that I can return to become their own blog posts.
What if your blog isn’t getting a lot of comments? Ask questions ! Sometimes readers just need a little push to leave a comment. Ask your readers what their biggest challenges are (related to your industry) and answer each question you receive with a separate blog post.
6. Statements and questions on social networks
On a related note, you can also find questions and statements from people through social media sites. You can even embed Tweets and Facebook statuses directly into your blog posts.
The bonus here is that not only do you find free blog content, but you also interact with potential customers. Make sure to share the blog post you wrote with these people, and they will often promote your link, so you gain even more exposure.
7. Quotes from other bloggers
While content scrapers are the scum of the earth (IMHO), it’s perfectly okay to quote other bloggers. As you read interesting articles from other people in your industry, think about how they can become their own blog posts. You can take a single quote and use it, expressing your own opinions on the topic, or you can create an article filled with quotes from other people, like I did with “25 Blogging Posts That Will Change You.” life “.
Remember to always give credit to the person who originally said what you are quoting by referring to their blog.
8. Links from other bloggers
Link resource pages are great for your readers and require little writing work on your part. You have to spend some time collecting the links, but if you read a lot about your industry anyway, it’s not difficult. Our Brilliant Bloggers series is a great example of how a link list can be inspiring and educational for your readers.
9. Infographic sharing sites
Visual information, especially in infographic form, is always extremely shareable. However, you don’t need to have any graphic design skills to post this type of blog content (although there are several sites to help you do so if you have the time and inclination). Often times, if you see an infographic online, it will come with an embed code so that you can share it on your own site.
You can also find free infographics to use by visiting sites like Visual.ly.
10. Guest bloggers
Guest blogging (that is, writing blog posts on other people’s blogs) is a great way to market your own blog. So others in your industry might be interested in providing free blog content in exchange for a link.
Don’t wait for people to come to you. Extend the invitation. Guest blogs are different from the past, so often people are waiting to be invited instead of reaching out. Not everyone will say yes, but having even a few guest bloggers per month can help keep your blog up to date.
11. Invited contributors
When someone writes a great blog post for you, make them a regular contributor. All you have to do is ask. Not everyone will be interested, but some of your guest bloggers will be happy to provide you with high-quality free content once or twice a month in exchange for a link.
Just beware of posts from guests and contributors who are competing with you. If your blog links to your competition, you’re not building a business for yourself, you’re just sending it to someone else. Choose your guest contributors wisely.
12. Sponsors / Customers
Depending on your industry, sponsors can be a great source of free content for your blog. For example, let’s say you run a radio station. Maybe one of your restaurant announcers could write about their favorite songs to play at a romantic dinner.
On a related note, clients can also write content for you. Testimonials are always great, but they can also write educational or entertaining content. For example, if you run a daycare center, one of your parents might write “10 things to never send to daycare with your kids” or if you run a pet grooming service, one of your clients might write ” How I trained my dog to sit for the groomer.
Who works in an industry related to yours? If you have partnerships with other local businesses, these people are great guest contributors, even if they don’t have blogs of their own. For example, if you own a hair salon, maybe the spa owner down the street will write something for you. Everyone wins by partnering with similar businesses.
As with guests and contributors, it’s usually enough to ask.
14. Affiliate programs
Are you an affiliate for any products or services? Ask if they have any content you can post. Often times, affiliate programs give you access to free blog content that you can just edit a little bit and post on your own blog. As an added bonus, this content is generally designed to sell as much as possible, so you’ll earn some extra cash as well.
15. Other members of your team
Finally, don’t just rely on YOU. If you’re having trouble blogging, ask your team for help. Not everyone will be a great writer, but some people will. If you have four other people on your team and they each write only once a month, that’s one post a week!
And don’t believe them when they say they have nothing to write about. What questions do customers ask them most often? What would they like people to know? What is the hardest part of their job? Help them come up with some ideas for content and before long you will have a stable of writers working for you.
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