Popular posts rely on content formulas because they have been successful time and time again.
It’s why we see certain types of headlines come in “waves” while others remain staples no matter what the niche.
If you’ve got a good headline… you’ve got a good idea for a post.
Once you understand these headline formats you can start generating dozens, even hundreds, of article ideas within hours by playing with the parameters.
Here are a few to get you started (and may actually be the only ones you’ll ever need). Along with them are a few reasons why they work (just to make sure it’s making sense).
Content Formulas #1: Lists
A top list is really easy to put together because all you need to do is a bit of research and then angle it to your audience.
You’re no way limited to going the normal 5, 7, 10 route when it comes to these lists.
Take a look at some of these formulas and play with the formatting:
- The Top [#] Reasons Why [Person] is [Something]
- The Top [#] Ways to [Action] that [Specific Problem]
- The Top [#] Mistakes [Industry] Makes when it comes to [Issue]
Play around with those numbers, plug in topics that are trending, use powerful language, and bring in emotion to these formulas and you’ll discover quite a few ideas worth running with.
Content Formulas #2: Interviews
Interviews are great because they’re easy to put together.
You bring new expertise to your community, and it gives you the chance to bond with other content producers and business owners in one swoop.
Here is how you can use a template for setting up the direction of your interviews:
- Here’s what [Name] has to say about [X]
- Ten Hard-Hitting Questions for [Name] about [X]
- [Name] explains [X]: The Exclusive Interview
Remember that it doesn’t just have to be a list of questions.
It’s good to go back and forth with them so your readers are getting an interview that’s not just someone rattling off.
Be sure to include feedback, responses, and analysis of their answers to really fill it out.
Content Formulas #3: Tutorials
Tutorials are the bread-winners because it allows you to show your expertise, teach something valuable, and also give you the opportunity promote affiliate products.
People digging through the content will stumble across your recommendations.
When you include the product/service as a staple of the guide they will feel inclined to make the purchase to complete the actions.
You can generate tons of tutorials if you use formulas like the following:
- [Subject]: Best Practices and Procedures
- [Subject]: What you’re doing wrong
- How to do [x] with [subject]
Best practices-type posts are great because they lay the foundation which everyone will want to learn. The “doing wrong” piques a reader’s interest if they know the subject so they’re likely to dig into these posts to find out what they’ve missed. Then there is the straightforward post about doing a certain action on the subject (such as “creating an About Me page for your website”).
What Content Formulas Will You Use?
See what types of formulas you can create on your own. Look back at some of your best posts and start replacing the subjects with those you haven’t covered. You’d be surprised how many post ideas you’ll generate within an hour just by toying around with formulas.