It’s getting late in the afternoon when you realize your blog post deadline is approaching in just a few hours. But your brain is shot, and you can’t think of a single idea. Panic ensues.
We’ve all been there.
Getting stuck in the ideation rut can ruin your day faster than spilling hot coffee down your shirt. By spending time generating ideas with the right tools, you can avoid that frustration altogether. Plus, these resources might even give your content strategy an energy boost.
1. Portent's Content Idea Generator
Discovering Portent’s Content Idea Generator tool has saved me more times than I can count. It generates creative (and sometimes outrageous) headlines based on any topic you’d like. Simply enter your subject in the box and watch the magic happen.
Just don’t spend an hour giggling at how you can use “Shades of Grey” in your headline. You still need to write that post!
You’re probably wondering how this tool fits in with content ideation. But trust me when I say that Followerwonk is a great one to turn to when writer’s block strikes. Searching Twitter bios of influencers in your industry can spark ideas and discussions. Browse experts’ social media timelines, and get inspired by what they’re talking about. Though it sounds like stalking, gaining insight on conversations in your space can spark new ideas or bring issues to the surface that you didn’t know existed.
And if you’re not in a time crunch, pick a few people to connect with, and start a conversation with them on Twitter. You may be pleasantly surprised by what can come from a short discussion on a topic you’re passionate about.
Übersuggest is one service I’ve kept in my back pocket for quite some time — we’ll call this the life hack of idea tools.
Though the CAPTCHA (required for every query) might drive you crazy sometimes, it pays off. Übersuggest spits out hundreds of keywords for each search you do, and it can help you to see related words and phrases to use in new blog posts. For instance, if you’re hell-bent on writing about wedding dresses, but your blog already includes 10 posts on the subject, you can use this tool to find new ideas. After I searched “wedding dress,” Übersuggest generated phrases such as wedding dress alterations, wedding dress boxes, and wedding dress donations. This simple tool will help you discover alternative angles for a topic so you can make that 5 p.m. deadline without fail.
With the growing number of group discussions on LinkedIn, you’re bound to find inspiration for a post. Discover the questions that people are asking, and answer them through a blog post. Then, go back to that group and post a link to your recent article.
You can also look for inspiration from content being published on the platform — LinkedIn announced it was opening its publishing platform to users. You can expect to read plenty of valuable content about a variety of different industries on the site.
We all hit the idea wall every once in a while. That’s why having the right tools is vital to saving you time and energy. The next time you’re down to the wire and need to produce a great article quickly, don’t just sit there waiting for inspiration. Go out and find it.
Post by Maya Szydlowski