When it comes to content creation, one of the biggest problems you’ll encounter is running out of ideas.
Eventually, you’ll realize you’ve already run through your best blog post ideas, leaving you in a creative slump.
We all struggle sometimes with creativity.
Inspiration comes when it comes, and it’s hard to induce it.
But with the right approach, you can boost your creativity, helping you plan and execute content that’s more insightful, more innovative, and more interesting for your readers.
This recent article from the Content Marketing Institute is written with the corporate world in mind, but these helpful tips can also apply to solopreneurs.
Check out this great advice from content creation experts.
1. Aim for more creative, less standardized process
Adobe’s State of Create 2016 survey confirms that 73% of workers today feel increasing pressure to be productive versus being creative at work. Of course, there are always deadlines to meet, but if your team members don’t have space to think, experience diversity of thought, or have the ability to engage in new experiences, their creativity will suffer.
A recent study showed that unfamiliar experiences can contribute to a 50% increase in creativity. Even small changes in one’s environment can provide a boost including lowering the lights, adding some ambient noise, or even just taking a walk.
2. Encourage more risk-taking
Untested ideas carry the risk of your team not hitting goals, so it feels safer to go with the tried and trusted. Yet, churning out the same-old, same-old does not fuel your creative team.
Adobe’s Kickbox project is one great example to spur innovation. Adobe employees with an idea can take a bright red box with curriculum for a six-step process, from ideation to small-scale test, Post-It note pads, pens, a Starbucks gift card, and a $1,000 prepaid credit card. One of the experimentation projects led Adobe to an $800 million acquisition of online photo-and-graphics marketplace Fotolia.
3. Focus on telling great stories
When creating content, it’s easy to get bogged down by the supposed rules and best practices of a specific format or media type. No doubt there are benefits to knowing that 30 seconds is the optimal length for a social video. but your focus should be on telling a great story first because that is ultimately what engages people the most.
And destroying the notion that we all have short attention spans, TED Talk videos run as long as 18 minutes and its subscribed audience is 6.5 million.
Encourage your team to learn and know the best practices, but to feel comfortable breaking the rules in the pursuit of telling an amazing story. Because, who knows, their innovation for your brand may rewrite the rules.
4. Review your work in different environments
When creating new content, you probably experience it in the perfect environment. You view images on top-end monitors and listen to the music on high-fidelity speakers. But that’s not how most of your audience will experience what you create.
Don’t just review copy in a Google Doc or a Word file. Read the text and view accompanying images on your site. The layout often has a dramatic effect on how and what you want to say.
These approaches can go a long way toward revitalizing your creative spark and getting out out of a content slump. You can read more about energizing your content over at the Content Marketing Institute.