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Blog Post Idea: Answer a Beginner Question

Posted By Darren Rowse 9th of March 2015 Writing Content 33

Stuck for content ideas for your blog? Here is a type of blog post that might spark an idea or two for you – it could even spark ideas for a whole series.

It is something that should be relevant to most niches and topics of blog so pick one, write it up, and when you’re done I’d love to see it in comments below.

A question I had when I started out

NewImage

Sometimes the best received posts are the ones for beginners on topics that help them really get started out in whatever pursuit you are writing about.

This is one of my favourite techniques for coming up with ideas to write about is to simply think back a year, two or ten and think about the questions and challenges that I had at that time.

Then I write the answer that I’ve since discovered to that question.

It might seem a bit silly writing about something so beginner or basic but you’ll if you were asking it you can bet others are still asking it today.

Beginners are often an ignored reader in many niches so paying them attention can be a powerful technique.

It’s also great for creating content that will potentially rank well in search engines as Google is a place many people go to ask the questions they’re too embarrassed to ask their friends.

Examples

Beginner photography question

On dPS some of our most popular posts of all time are answering really simple beginner questions. For example my How to Hold a Camera post was inspired by my own mistakes as a kid taking blurry photos.

As I’ve previously written on ProBlogger – that How to hold a camera post was something so basic I nearly didn’t publish it. But to this day it’s had over 600,000 visitors to it (with more arriving every day).

Beginner blogging question

A similar example here on ProBlogger is my ‘what is a blog?’ post. I wrote the post in 2005 and to this day it still gets traffic!

Exercise

So think back – what questions did you used to ask about the topic or topics you write about? Come up with a list and start working through them.

You might even come up with enough to start a weekly or monthly series of posts for those just starting out.

Once you’ve brainstormed get to work and write your post. Once it is published feel free to share a link below so we can see what you wrote!

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.
Comments
  1. Great Darren, it is very useful for not only new but all the blogger in the industry that some day every one short of content idea for their blog.
    thanks for the simple but great tip

  2. Answering people’s questions on blogs is a great idea to create valuable content. And, also a great way to build deep, solid online relationships with the intention of making good money from affiliate programs.

  3. Exactly Darren. We always focus on writing topics that look more professional. As if, writing about something so basic could ruin our blogging career. This post clearly proves that as a misconception.

  4. Good post Darren .In order to grow and build online business, content ideas and social media is very important because good content get a lot of traffic to website So these tips will help me a lot.
    Thanks a lot for sharing these tips.

  5. You are right Darren, writing a blog/article is all about sharing your experiences which solve the most basic problems.It is a great way to go back and use your confusions or questions, at that time, to formulate some great ideas for blogs and I bet we will come up with a lot more than ‘some’.

  6. Very true. Posts meant for beginners are very important. Many beginners look for information on the internet. They will surely appreciate it if a blog has content that covers the basics properly.

    I think authority blogs must have such posts. I have also started my blog with posts oriented towards newbies. Works great and the readers also appreciate the simple how to guides. Thanks for reminding, Darren.

    Neil

  7. Blog post ideas, for me, are plentiful NOW, but when I was a newbie, I was FILLED with questions!

    You’ve given a lot of great advice on this blog, Darren, and but I think you should tell your readers to read through the comments and seek out bloggers who seem to know what they’re talking about.

    This is a great way to network and to make friends in the blogosphere… not to mention a wonderful opportunity to have their questions answered by bloggers who have learned things the hard way.

    Don’tcha think?

  8. Amazing Article Darren, we must cover the basics of the post not focusing on the other things

    thank you

  9. Hi Darren,

    Thanks for the post. It’s the simplest solutions, that are the best.

    I’m literally just starting out on my journey online. I mean green, with one blog post under my belt and a lot of white space yet to be filled with content. You are so correct. What to write is my number one question about blogging.

    I’m exited and thankful that I came across this post. I can’t tell you how many hour I’ve agonized over the very question that you’ve cover here.

    Thanks and I look forward to following your blog.

    Mark.

  10. I always struggle to think of the right kind of talking point to bring up with relation to posting a blog or an article of some kind. I always try to think of a question I’d like answering or if it’s something that others have asked me about when I myself don’t know the answer.

    Thanks for the post. Great work.

  11. Hi Darren!

    I have a number of sites, but what I did recently for one of them is similar to what you’re saying here.

    I went to the top 40 meditation sites and found their frequently asked questions. I compiled them into a Word Doc so I could arrange them and cut out duplicates. I’m going to choose what looks to be about 50 questions that are commonly asked, and I’ll answer them in my own words – and also include some different points of view from other meditation teachers that already answered the question on their blogs.

    I find it much easier to go find blog topic opportunities in bulk than I do searching for one or two ideas. New ideas is definitely one thing bloggers have the most trouble with!

    So, go have a look at FAQ’s in your niche and see what questions have been answered and how you might answer them differently.

    Great post! Cheers man!

  12. This post reminds me an old post of mine “How to SEO”. That post was a big hit with a great amount of organic traffic.

  13. Thank for giving the useful tips

  14. Thanks for the tips! As a blogger, this is really helpful. I guess these kinds of articles are effective because nowadays people rely so much on the internet to get instant answers. If they’re curious about something, they’ll just hit the search button. For succeeding blog posts, is it better to do blog topics for beginners again or follow-ups?

  15. Hi Darren,

    This is a great tip. So many beginners ask questions about different kinds of things in your industry.

    You can look at question and answer sites, Forums, your own blog and so forth. If you start to write articles answering beginner questions one question at a time, you’ll end up with a blog full of valuable content. Thanks for sharing.

  16. Hello Darren,

    For the same reason, I had been monitoring Quora. Quora is a continuously improving day-by-day. Collection of questions and answers are created and edited, and organized by everyone who uses it. It can be a great resource for getting new topic ideas.

  17. I can see where it’s difficult to write such a simple post for a beginner. I go to many meetups around the Nashville area and I talk to a lot of people. Most of the time I get asked basic questions around online business and internet marketing.

    Sometimes I think, “I thought everyone knew this!” We were all beginners at one point in time and we all had beginner questions.

    It’s hard to remember, I know, and it’s hard to write about something so basic when we want to show the world we are experts!! We think, “If I write about simple things, people won’t recognize me as an influencer or authority figure.”

    But, there are many beginners out there that need that same basic information we once needed. Great post!

  18. Hi Darren,

    Great idea for finding new blog post ideas! Asking readers questions not only give you fresh ideas to work on but you will create better engagement with them overtime.

    What are the tips do you recommend for a newbie to get the most out of this strategy assuming that he has zero audience to engage?

  19. This is really excellent way to come up with content ideas. I am currently running an entire series on just basic blogging topics. The feedback I have had, has been really good with many people thanking me for writing this series. For e.g one of my latest posts was on how to comment on blog posts. There are quite a few unwritten rules and my expierece on the matter has been much apreacieated.

  20. This is the most effective way to engage audience by posting (How’s) related post, Beginner always search like How to Do SEO or How to Hold Camera etc.

    Thanks Darren for detail post.

  21. This is really excellent way to come up with content ideas. I am currently running an entire series on just basic blogging topics. The feedback I have had, has been really good with many people thanking me for writing this series. For e.g one of my latest posts was on how to comment on blog posts. There are quite a few unwritten rules and my expierece on the matter has been much apreacieated.

  22. A seemingly simple, but ingenious idea, Darren! Thank you – I might have to probe my brain now, although I continue to regard myself as a beginner ;)

    But 1.5 years in blogging and freelancing and social media has taught me SOMETHING, I am sure <3

    OODLES of love
    Kitto

  23. Good advice Darren,

    It is so easy to forget what it was like in the beginning of a venture. And the more involved you become, the more complex your thinking tends to become.

    Regards,
    David.

  24. hi Daren
    awesome idea on the post, theidea of looking back and then connecting the dots can do wonders, if you are really looking up for idea.

    you know the greatest hurdle, that is faced by looking back, is the silliest thought, that who will read this, and this thought makes you down, seriously, really seriously,

    your post has really given a tremendous boost for loggers who are looking down take care

  25. Hi Darren,

    Targeting beginners is a great thing to do, as you mentioned, some ignore them. And I believe answering their questions would lead to great tutorials.
    But one should start with the very simple concepts in order to answer these questions.

  26. Hi Darren,
    Awesome idea. I never thought it this way. Thinking of common ideas as might be already published is a great myth.. Thanks for clearing this out.

    I am now going to write a ton of beginner question posts.. thanks again

  27. You are absolutely right mr. Darren. its really a great thing for all. Sharing of knowledge with beginner as well as with others is awesome.

  28. Oh my god. You are right Darren! Why has it never crossed my mind before? Thank you so much! I think i will start with some question list.

  29. Hi Darren,
    Great advice here.. I have just entered the Blogosphere and I have selected a Niche “Blogging for Beginners” because I will have the same mentality as the other newbies and I will be writing my struggles and my mistakes on my blog which can help a complete newbie.

    Yes, I agree that Beginner niche is most ignored niche out there. Most of the Bloggers don’t want to blog about their silly mistakes because they think it may shed their “Expert” Tag.

  30. Thanks a lot…
    Post really meant for beginners and its a very good idea to sharing of knowledge with beginners as well as others also.

  31. Long time reader, first time commentator.

    This is a great post. I’m reminded of something that Tony Robbins used to talk about on his self-improvement tapes–he relates that getting a black belt involves master 7 fundamental moves, and the ones who succeed are the ones who focus on MASTERY of those 7 fundamentals. The ones who don’t make it are the ones who aren’t committed to the fundamentals, but who instead want to move on and learn new moves.

    Answering beginner questions is one of those fundamentals, I think.

    Anyway, I enjoyed this post a lot.

  32. I think a lot of experts tend to overestimate how much others know about a particular topic. As a software developer I do that all the time. Things that seem obvious to me are not necessarily even considered by my clients.

    Think about it like reading. When you were a child you looked at words and letters on a piece of paper and saw gibberish. Once you learned how to read, you couldn’t even look at a printed word and not read it. It became automatic. That’s how experts have to treat beginners – just like explaining what words and letters are to a child before the child learns to read. Just my 2 cents.

  33. This is really excellent way to come up with content ideas. I am currently running an entire series on just basic blogging topics. The feedback I have had, has been really good with many people thanking me for writing this series. For e.g one of my latest posts was on how to comment on blog posts. There are quite a few unwritten rules and my expierece on the matter has been much apreacieated.

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