Sometimes I’m just not as creative as I’d like to be. As much as I love brainstorming and generating lists of all the things I want to blog about, sometimes I draw a blank or don’t feel like writing from my list. Those days when I want to write something fresh or turbo charge my brain power, I open Google. Not to surf or distract myself, but to get a different perspective.
Google looks so simple that it’s easy to overlook the built-in tools that allow you to expand and refine your searches right from your browser window.
Two of my favorite Google search tools are “Related Searches” and “Something Different.” They each open the universe of possibilities in different ways.
Google’s Something Different feature simply pulls a few words or concepts that are in the “same category as your original search.” When I search for “business blogging,” it shows corporate blogging, article marketing, social media, viral marketing, and podcasting, which are all ways to market your business online. Or when I search for “watermelon,” I get strawberry, pineapple, cantaloupe, cucumber and mango.
Sometimes this simple list of alternatives is enough to remind me that there are other options and inspire me to try something new. If I’m bored with what I’m writing about or just not feeling it that day, chances are you will be too. And boring is definitely not one of my core business attributes.
The second tool and my personal favorite is Google’s Related Searches, which allows you to “delve deeper into your original search” or “drill-down into a specific subject.” So if I know I want to write about business blogging, but don’t know exactly what I want to focus on, this tool can help me narrow down my options and choose a nice bite-sized blog topic.
Simply type in your search term, then click on the Related Searches button in the left column and…. Voila. Your world just opened a little and chances are there are keyword phrases on this list that you never would have thought of. You can now explore any of these related terms, then click “More like this” to update your related search list and go even deeper.
With so many powerful free tools out there, there’s really no excuse not to blog. If you don’t know what to write about or you’re tired of talking about the same thing over and over again, there’s always Google. It’s so easy, it almost feels like cheating. But that’s OK.