A great way to avoid getting writer’s block is mapping out in advance what your content will cover. This is accomplished by making an outline of your blog post or article. You decide the post’s main thesis and brainstorm the different points it will cover. Each point is then fleshed out with sub points. This top-down approach works well because it gives the writer a plan he can work with.

However, there is a little known content development technique for expanding your content if what you’ve written falls short of a full blog post. This method does not add filler. Instead, it’s a way of reading between the lines to identify the unanswered questions that lurk between your sentences.

With this technique, it’s possible to expand the word count of a 300 word post 20 fold or more. How is this done? By looking at every declarative sentence and asking a series of questions beginning with the words what, when, where, who, why, and how. This technique has already been used on the first sentence of this paragraph when the question “how is this done?” was asked and then followed by this answer. The question doesn’t have to appear explicitly in your content. The question simply serves as a prompt for the subject of the sentences that follow.

Of the six questions, the why question is perhaps the most powerful because it produces deep insightful content. Why does this question produce insightful content? Because answering the why question produces the underlying explanations and reasons about things and concepts. Answering the why question is useful for writing persuasive content. Why would you want to write persuasive content? Because persuasive content produces conversions on your website. People want to know why they should buy your products or join your newsletter and so forth.

It’s important that you exercise judgment about which questions to answer and of recursively asking the same question as was done in the preceding paragraph. Otherwise, you may produce run-on content (note that this sentence answered a why question directed at the preceding sentence).

This technique works very well with tips based content. Each tip can be fleshed out by answering the appropriate questions about the tip itself. These would be questions the reader must know to use the tip and perhaps address its importance by answering the why question.