Continually drafting creative content is a challenging job, even for the most enthusiastic mind. In order to keep your work at its best, you must learn the important lesson of making sure that you keep yourself fresh and inspired.
I recently had an excellent opportunity present itself. Falling into my usual habits, drafted content, gave it a title, chose media for it, and sent it along to my editor. The image I selected was a stock photo that we had already purchased rights to; it seemed on-topic and convenient. My editor’s reply was a very polite acknowledgement of the article with a request to change the title, photo, and caption to something more dynamic. I translated that to mean “something less boring,” and with good cause. I had picked something boring. Looking at my choices with fresh eyes, I was rather startled to see just how uninspired it seemed. I was falling back on quick and convenient default sources instead of challenging myself to go out and find new and entertaining content. It was a great wake-up call.
This happens to a lot of us. We get used to drafting content and instead of continually challenging ourselves, we fall back on our defaults. Maybe it’s the same old boring media options to accompany your content, as in my case, or maybe it’s actually the content itself that is becoming stale and redundant.
- When was the last time I sought out new sources for information?
- Do I think about the entertainment value of the images I use?
- Do I make time to read and look around so that I can get fresh new ideas?
- How often do I look at my marketing copy from the point of view of a reader who is hoping to be entertained?
- What could I do to make my content fresher and more relevant?
Oh, and it probably goes without saying, but having somebody look over your newsletter before you send it is an excellent idea. Your editor should read for both entertainment value and accuracy. Without an editor, I would have just submitted my boring old title and picture. Oh, the horror! Don’t let it happen to you.