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How to generate 112 new content ideas in 30 minutes

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By the end of this post, you will solve these 3 problems:

  1. You’re not sure what topics to write about
  2. You’re not sure how to find the topics you’re credible enough to write about
  3. You’re not sure how to come up with engaging ideas about those topics

To get you there, we’re going to use The Endless Idea Generator framework.

  1. Use the 2-Year Test to find your topic ideas
  2. Add specificity to your topics to match your credibility
  3. Use the 4A Framework + proven approaches to generate ideas
  4. Choose 3 ideas to write about over the next 3 days, then get going

Step 1: The 2-Year Test

  • “I don’t know what to write about.”
  • “I have an idea of what to write about, but I don’t know how to organize it.
  • “I have too many ideas to write about, and I’m not sure how to narrow it down.”

Which is why, right out the gate, one of the big frameworks we share with writers is “The 2-Year Test.”

  • Digital writing
  • Journaling
  • Balancing side projects with a full-time job
  • Running, building, and selling a digital course and community
  • Journey of losing weight
  • Beginner audience building
  • Digital leverage
  • General growth frameworks
  • Managing your personal finances in your 20s
  • Designing a life operating system (habits/frameworks/routines)
  • Etc.

From here, your goal is to narrow it down to just 3 buckets.

Step 2: Adding specificity

An example will help drive this home — here’s 3 overarching topics, made more specific:

  1. How to build a writing habit for complete beginner writers
  2. Journaling for ambitious entrepreneurs who aren’t yet journaling but know they should be
  3. General golden nuggets of wisdom for ambitious 20-somethings who are interested in personal growth

To get specific, here are some levers you can pull:

  • By industry (X for healthcare startups)
  • By demographic (X for middle-aged women)
  • By physical location (X for Chicago)
  • By digital platform (X for Twitter)
  • By price (X for free)
  • By distribution (X but delivery)
  • By problem (X but w/o Y)

Step 3: Using the 4A Framework to write headlines

You can express each of your topics in 4 ways:

  • Actionable (here’s how)
  • Analytical (here are the numbers)
  • Aspirational (yes, you can)
  • Anthropological (here’s why)


  • Tips
  • Hacks
  • Resources
  • Ultimate guides


  • Industry trends
  • Surprising numbers
  • Why your idea works


  • Lessons
  • Mistakes
  • Reflections
  • Underrated traits
  • How to get started


  • Fears
  • Failures
  • Struggles
  • Why others are wrong
  • How you’ve been misled

Step 4: Choosing 3 ideas and getting going

Pick 3 ideas.

To recap:

  1. Do this by hand to break out of your regular environment
  2. Start with a massive 2-year test brain dump
  3. Grab the 2–3 buckets that resonated most with you
  4. Tailor the specificity to match your level of credibility
  5. Use the 4A framework to generate ideas
  6. Pick 3 ideas, then get going and iterate from there
  • A narrowed list of topics you are confident to write about
  • Hundreds of potential ideas
  • Clarity for the next 3 days



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Nicolas Cole

100M+ Views | 5x Author | Co-founder of Ship 30 for 30 | Want to start writing online? Get the Ultimate Guide: