3 Simple Ways to Generate More Paying Ideas

Christina Gillick here.

This week we’re talking about article writing and how you can use it to get paying gigs now, while transitioning from your full-time job into living the writer’s life.

So far we’ve covered what article writing consists of and where to find clients who are willing to pay for content – even if you’re a beginner.

Today, using your list from yesterday, let’s brainstorm article ideas that will get you hired …

In many cases, website owners (otherwise known as your potential clients) will ask you to send in ideas before writing a complete article.

But – you may be wondering – where do I come up with ideas?

Well, here are my favorite ways:

1. Read other articles or blog posts on the website.

As you’re reading, you’ll likely find dozens of post ideas … in fact, any question that crosses your mind could be another idea.

Often, as I’m reading, I’ll have thoughts like, “I have something to add to that point,” or “What should I do about X?”

If you and I are having these thoughts, so are other readers.

However, don’t start a relationship with a potential client by criticizing them. Instead propose a completely new article, without critiquing the post that sparked your idea.

2. Be a regular reader … of the comments.

If you read an article and don’t come up with anything unique to say, that’s okay. Keep reading into the comments …

What questions are other readers asking?

Often one comment or question – from a different perspective – can lead to unlimited ideas for content.

3. Use your own research and experiences.

If you choose a topic that you’re already interested in, you’re likely to think about it often …

For instance, as mentioned earlier this week, I’m involved in raising backyard chickens. However, I’m not a professional chicken wrangler.

For the first several months it seemed like I was always searching for the answers:

  • How much room do chickens need?
  • Why do roosters crow?
  • What are the pros and cons of clipping chickens’ wings?

But, now that I’ve personally researched, watched, and cared for my own flock, I could write an entire book (or several) about raising chickens. And, because I’ve experienced it firsthand, I can add my own stories and observations …

That’s why it’s important to choose a topic you enjoy – even if you don’t know everything about the subject. You can always do research to fill in what you don’t know. (And, if you enjoy the topic, you’ll enjoy the research.)

Today’s action step: Using the ideas above, come up with your own idea. Then, follow the submission guidelines to submit your idea to one of the potential clients on your list from yesterday.

Remember to follow their directions. If they want one sentence explaining your idea, stick to one sentence. Or – if they want a short summary – provide one.

If you have any questions during this process, be sure to post in the comments here.

Then, tune in tomorrow, because I’ll give you a simple template for writing your article …

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

At last, a professional organization that caters to the needs of direct-response industry writers. Find out how membership can change the course of your career. Learn More »


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Published: July 22, 2015

1 Response to “3 Simple Ways to Generate More Paying Ideas”

  1. Christina, How do I find the website of a potential customer when looking at the job boards? I've looked at several potential jobs but the people needing content or articles written don't provide a website.

    Kim SmythJuly 25, 2015 at 4:38 pm


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