Working in a creative industry can be all fun and games until you hit the dreaded creativity wall. You know the one. You’re sitting with your team and you just can’t come up with an idea that has enough oomph. But, think about it – how many innovative, viral ideas about one topic can one team possibly deliver in a year? Content marketing teams are bound to hit a wall every once in awhile. For these moments, here are a few tips and tools you can use to drive through the wall and boost your content marketing team’s creativity.
Create an environment that supports idea sharing
Go Fish Digital relies on team brainstorms to continuously deliver innovative creative campaign ideas to clients and, while every brainstorm isn’t a total home run, our team provides an average of 25-30 potential campaign ideas at each session. We value brainstorming sessions because they foster creativity through idea sharing and collaboration.
Combining a full team’s unique perspectives helps create content marketing magic, but you first need to empower the team to share those perspectives with one another. And by creating an environment where team members feel like they can say anything, it opens the floor up for other team members to help develop ideas that might initially seem impossible or unclear.
Often, a team member’s pitch will begin with, “I have no idea how we’d do this, but it would be cool if…” and the brainstorm session really skyrockets from there. In a recent brainstorm for a client, a team member expressed one of those “I don’t know how we’d do this” ideas about how cool it would be to do an analysis of the popular TV show Fixer Upper, specifically looking at details like how often Joanna used shiplap or how many times her children brought her sopapillas.
The rest of the team (which luckily included a few Fixer Upper enthusiasts) jumped in to help develop the methodology, decide which data points to explore, and figure out the best way present the data. And, just like that, the Fixer Upper data analysis was born!
Provide access to useful research tools
Our team relies on tools like Buzzsumo and Statista every day to come up with innovative campaign ideas for our clients. Buzzsumo’s Most Shared feature allows you to see the high-performing content by keyword, which is measured by social engagement. Seeing content that’s already performing well and driving engagement for the keywords you’re targeting acts as a starting point for building new campaign ideas.
Statista, on the other hand, has a seemingly endless supply of interesting data sets that you can explore and build potential campaigns off of. As an added bonus, the sources are strong and the data is sound, which is essential in getting content picked up by reputable news outlets.
One my personal favorite tools for sparking content ideas, which doesn’t require a subscription, is Google News. By searching keywords related to client’s brands, you’re able to see what’s trending in their industry. Current events and trending content pieces inspire new ideas. Some of the most creative and successful content at Go Fish Digital tie into the news cycle and using Google News gives a clear window into that cycle.
Keep a constant pulse on other great creative content
Some of the best content ideas stem from similar content that we’re able to repurpose and present in a new, exciting way. For that reason, it’s important to stay up to date on the high-performing content in your industry. Which brand’s content strategies do you admire? Follow them on social media, draw inspiration from what they’re creating, and then find ways to apply it to your own content. Another thing you can do to boost your content is to follow content marketing blogs and even other agencies’ blogs so you can stay in the know.
It’s easy to get bogged down by the pressure of delivering a consistent stream of creative ideas, so it’s important to remember working in a creative industry should be fun. Whether it’s a change of scenery or a round of libations, do what you need to do to get your team’s creative juices flowing!