How to Brainstorm Engaging Content Ideas

Updated on: 05 October 2023 | 6 min read

Do you ever get stuck in front of a blank screen, desperately trying to brainstorm content ideas? We’ve all been there. In the ever-evolving world of online content, coming up with exciting and unique ideas is like finding hidden treasures. At those times when you hit a content roadblock, you can rely on content brainstorming to jump-start your creativity.

In this article, we’ll share some effective tips and methods to help you streamline your content brainstorming.

Tips for Effective Content Brainstorming

Brainstorming content ideas is a creative process that involves generating a variety of concepts and topics for your content marketing efforts.

  • Understand your audience: Start by having a clear understanding of your target audience. Who are they? What are their interests, problems, and needs? Knowing your audience will help you create content to their liking.

  • Set clear objectives: Know what you want to accomplish with your content. Are you aiming to educate, entertain, inspire, or inform your audience? Having clear objectives will guide your brainstorming process.

  • Get different perspectives: If working in a team, encourage diverse perspectives. Different team members may have unique insights and ideas that can enrich your content brainstorming session.

  • Do a content gap analysis: Identifying the topics, keywords, or content types that your competitors are covering but you are not. It helps you uncover opportunities to create content that can fill these gaps and improve your online visibility and relevance in your industry or niche.

  • Keep a swipe file of great marketing material: By maintaining a well-organized swipe file of inspiring marketing examples, you’ll have a great resource at your disposal for content ideation, creative campaigns, and staying updated on the latest industry trends and best practices. With an online visual collaboration tool like Creately, you can import, document and centralize all inspiring marketing material in one place, and use a suitable format like a mood board or idea board to swiftly organize them.

  • Use creative techniques: Explore creative techniques like mind mapping, word association, or the “Six Thinking Hats” method to stimulate idea generation.

  • Use content formats: Look at using different content formats, such as blog posts, videos, podcasts, infographics, social media posts, webinars, or eBooks. Different formats can appeal to different audiences.

  • Keyword research: Use keyword research tools to discover what topics and phrases your audience is searching for online. This way you can align your content with their interests.

  • Prioritize and refine: Not all ideas are created equal. Prioritize the most promising ones based on your objectives and audience’s interests. Refine these ideas into well-defined content concepts.

Content Brainstorming Methods

These content brainstorming techniques can be used individually or in groups to stimulate creativity, generate a wide range of content ideas, and involve team members or collaborators in the brainstorming process. Choose the technique that fits the best with your team’s dynamics and goals to brainstorm content ideas effectively.

Topics Mind Map'

A mind map is a visual content brainstorming technique. You can use it to explore a wide range of related content ideas. Begin with a central theme in the center of a blank page or digital canvas. Branch out from this central theme by jotting down related subtopics, keywords, or ideas. Connect these subtopics with lines to create a visual map of potential content ideas. Expand each subtopic with more specific concepts.

Mind Map Template

Rapid Ideation

A fast-paced content brainstorming method where the focus is on quantity over quality.

Set a timer for a brief period, such as 5-10 minutes. During this time, ask participants to jot down as many content ideas as they can, without evaluating or critiquing them. Tryto generate as many ideas as possible. After the time is up, review the list and identify promising ideas to develop further. Rapid Ideation is excellent for quickly generating a wide range of ideas.

Rapid Ideation Template

Round Robin

An effective content brainstorming method where a group of individuals takes turns sharing content ideas in a structured manner.

Gather a group of team members or colleagues for a content brainstorming session. Sit in a circle, and one person starts by sharing a content idea. Then, the next person in the circle adds their idea, either building upon the previous one or introducing a new concept. Continue around the circle until everyone has contributed ideas. This collaborative approach encourages diverse perspectives and makes sure that everyone has a chance to participate in the brainstorming process.

Round Robin Brainstorming Template


A silent, written brainstorming technique where participants write down content ideas on paper or digitally and pass their ideas to others for further contributions.

Provide each participant with a blank sheet of paper or a digital document. Set a time limit, such as 5-10 minutes. During this time, participants write down their content ideas. After the timer is up, they pass their paper or document to the person on their right. The next person reads the idea, adds to it, and passes it on. Continue this process until each paper or document has gone around the group. With brainwriting, you can iterate and contribute without having to talk.

Brainwriting 6-3-5 Template

Reverse Brainstorming

Reverse brainstorming is a technique that focuses on finding solutions to problems or challenges by brainstorming the opposite or negative aspects.

Start with identifying a content problem or challenge you’d like to address. Then, brainstorm the opposite or negative aspects of the problem. Once you have a list of negative aspects, explore how you can turn them into positive content ideas or solutions.

Reverse Brainstorming Template

SCAMPER Technique

SCAMPER is an acronym that stands for Substitute, Combine, Adapt, Modify, Put to another use, Eliminate, and Reverse. It’s a creative content brainstorming technique for generating new ideas by applying these seven thought processes to existing concepts.

Take an existing content idea or topic and apply each of the SCAMPER thought processes to it. For example, you can consider how to combine it with another topic, modify it to fit a different audience, or eliminate unnecessary elements to simplify it.

SCAMPER Template

The 5 Whys

Originally a problem-solving technique, the 5 Whys involves asking “why” repeatedly to dig deeper into a topic or issue. It can lead to uncovering content ideas related to underlying problems or causes.

Start with a broad question or topic, and ask “why” multiple times to explore the root causes or implications. For each “why,” brainstorm content ideas that address the resulting insights.

5 Whys Analysis

Explore more brainstorming techniques with;

Remember, content brainstorming is an ongoing process. Stay curious, adapt to changing trends, and continually refine your approach to keep your content fresh and engaging.

Join over thousands of organizations that use Creately to brainstorm, plan, analyze, and execute their projects successfully.

Get started here


author image
Amanda Athuraliya Communications Specialist

Amanda Athuraliya is the communication specialist/content writer at Creately, online diagramming and collaboration tool. She is an avid reader, a budding writer and a passionate researcher who loves to write about all kinds of topics.

View all posts by Amanda Athuraliya →