Are you constantly searching the internet for content ideas? Are you plagued, time and time again with writer’s block? I know the feeling and it can be extremely frustrating. There are times my brain is rapid firing with concepts and ideas. Still, others when I stare at my computer screen for hours before I can seem to string a sentence together. Let’s explore how to get our brains to storm further below!
Whiteboard and Pen!
With the world we live in, being constantly plugged in, sometimes we forget there is value in the old fashioned way. Grab yourself a whiteboard and some dry erase markers and create yourself a bubble chart. Your center theme or idea goes in the middle, of course. Then branch off into other areas and topics that your central theme envelops. From the mini-bubbles, branch into other bubbles that capture ideas for each individual concept you create. You would be amazed at how quickly your brain begins to storm with ideas surrounding the topic you’ve selected to write about! If this method is too old school for you (yes, I used the term old school), utilize the next example for creating ideas.
Constantly Be Researching!
If you are a content marketer, curating research, is an imperative key to success with your job. With the internet at your fingertips, the possibilities are endless. Find other online blog’s within your niche and read their publications. Browsing leaders within your industry and even your competitor’s blogs, will help provide you with topics to write about (in your own words of course)! Pay attention to which articles have received the most social shares. Those are the topics people are talking about. Use notepad to save a list of topic ideas and correlating research links. Remember to cite sources.
Develop the Outline!
After you have curated a list, it is time to write. The idea behind having a list, is that while all of the topics on the list are things you are capable of writing about, your creative juices may lean towards one topic over another each day. Once you have selected your topic, it is time to create the outline of the overall post. This is where you develop the who, what, when, where, why and how of the story. Never assume your reader is familiar with the topic. Write at an eighth grade reading level and avoid bogging your posts down with industry jargon!
Sometimes, even when you have created an extensive list of ideas to work from, it can prove difficult to become inspired. Inspiration is an important part of quality writing. The best writing comes from passion, conviction and
adoration concerning the topic that is being written about. If David (Matrix Marketing Geek/President- incidentally also my cousin/boss), asked me to write a post about auditing links , my eyes would glaze over before he could finish his request. This is a topic I know very little about. I have no passion or desire to learn more. In addition, while I am intelligent enough to Google it and write something up, the passion would be lacking. The result? A generic, boring post about something I hope and pray he never asks me to write about again (That is his tech/geek realm NOT mine)!
How do you become inspired? I am fortunate enough to live by the ocean and find inspiration there. The sounds, smells and breeze the ocean brings with it, helps to center me and quiet my mind. Sometimes, all you need, is to free yourself from distractions! An office setting can become riddled with telephone interruptions, email alerts, social media breaks and an abundance of other things. If you are having a difficult time becoming inspired, seek out a place that you know personally inspires you.
Write In The Zone!
Have you ever created a piece of content in your mind while driving or lying in bed? I have. What happens when you break free from the traffic jam or fall asleep for the night? The details and the way you had worded things, slips from your mind. Sometimes my best ideas come to me when I am laying down to go to sleep. Get up and write while you are in the zone! Now, naturally you cannot write while driving. However, you can dictate the general idea and outline with any smartphone. When you feel creativity surging throughout your entire being, work it baby! Too many times, I have fallen asleep after visualizing all the components needed to create a piece of content, only to wake up drained and unable to recall all the brilliant dots I had connected the night before. Over time, I have found that when I get up and write it, it isn’t any more exhausting than it was for me to stay up entertaining the idea in my mind half the night anyways. The difference? Rather than entertaining it, I’ve created it!