Stuck for content? 5 easy tools to guarantee ideas

"I feel like I've run out of content ideas for my business!" — Have you ever said this?

To be honest, it's a comment I hear frequently from clients, especially those who have not ever had to write or create content before launching their own brand. But, coming up with blog, video, social media or thought leadership ideas shouldn't take hours and, most importantly, shouldn't stress you out. 

Stuck for content in your small business? Here's five tools I use to help generate content ideas. 

1. Curiosity Quiz

The first thing to consider is, what is my audience curious about? What's important to them at this moment (whatever context they may be in prior to purchasing your product or service)? 

For example, if you sell kid's bathers your target audience may be curious about kid's style, kid's health, family health, fitness, body confidence (parent or child), travel or water safety.

By starting with the question, "what are they curious about?" themes begin to emerge which you can use to generate content ideas and, even use as your brand's content pillars. 

2. Google Alerts

I love Google! They offer SO many useful and FREE products, one of which is Google Alerts. This nifty tool allows you to get information emailed to you daily, weekly or as-it-happens from news outlets, blogs, videos etc on any subject and restrict the content source to a specific location to suit your audience.

For example, I previously worked with a large psychology firm and used Google Alerts to get information from "news" outlets only on "parent mental health" and "adolescent mental health" from content sources within Victoria, Australia. This allowed me to get a daily list of news items that could then be tweaked into social media posts, thought leadership pieces for Medium and LinkedIn, and internal staff emails.

Experiment with Google Alerts to find content ideas (as well as guest bloggers and experts) for your business. 

3. BuzzSumo 

I use BuzzSumo at least three times a week. This tool aggregates information across the web to show you the most shared content on any subject or domain (i.e. your competitor's or favourite blog) as well as providing you ideas about key influencers, guest bloggers and subject matter experts. 

In addition to showing you the type of content most shared, it also gives you amazing ideas for headings and rich media. What's more, you can filter to see what's been shared most on different platforms (i.e. LinkedIn vs. Facebook) which is useful when you're looking to run more thought leadership articles on a professional platform like LinkedIn. 

4. HubSpot's Blog Ideas Generator 

Total honesty: I find HubSpot's Blog Ideas Generator a little hit and miss at times. If your business is relatively easy to understand, it's great, but if it's a little more complex or unusual, it doesn't always hit the mark.

Regardless, this tool is a good one to experiment with and has been good to me in many cases. You simply input three nouns relevant to your business and it pumps out five blog ideas, many of which will be in list format (i.e. 5 Things to Do Before You Visit Melbourne). 

5. Answer The Public 

Answer the Public is INCREDIBLE! You simply choose your language (i.e., EN) and then put in subject words relevant to your business and audience (i.e. ceramics) and it pumps out hundreds of questions that may work as blog ideas, video series concepts or social media posts. You can then download all of these questions into a CSV file and use this to start creating content. You can also click on each question to see which answers (content) are currently ranking well on Google. 

Content doesn't have to be a beast or something that overwhelms you as a small business owner,I hope the tools above make brainstorming content that little bit easier. 

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Fiona Killackey