Posts for Creative Inspiration Category

How to turn one idea into a month’s (or more!) worth of content

Tired of generating fresh, must-read, totally-worth-your-time content week after week after week (like a never-ending Content Groundhog Day)? Is your creativity well feeling a little dry? Wish you could master the art of consistent, charismatic content that charms and compels?

I’ve got some good news for you.

All you need is one good idea. 

One good idea that you can plump up like a wordy Hansel + Gretel to keep your tribe fed for a full month.

Here’s how to do it.

How to turn one idea into a month’s (or more!) worth of content

Step 1. Step away from the desk.

Grab a notebook and pen, leave your phone at home, and go for a walk. You need the fresh air and your mind is craving some inspiration. Trust me.

Step 2. Ask yourself what matters to you right now. 

Once your regular worries and concerns have had their trip around the merry-go-round of your mind, what pops up? Where does your mind go? What are you passionate about at the moment? If you’re feeling stuck, ask yourself: What do I wish my tribe knew? What do I know that could make their life that much easier?

For example, on my walk this morning, I started thinking about sales pages and how, for a lot of people, they suck the big one. We’re entrepreneurs, business women, soul-searchers, heart-seekers … we’re not sales people. Right?

Well, I thought to myself, actually we kind of are. We sell ourselves, and others, stuff all the time. That movie you want to see, but your partner thinks is a snooze-fest. The culinary choice that you’re craving but your friend isn’t too keen on. The ‘turn left and go home’ face you make to your stubborn puppy when all he wants to do is turn right and keep playing. We’re natural sales people.

It’s just when we have to sell something we get all self-conscious and weird. Suddenly we’re throwing around phrases like ‘Limited offer!’ and ‘Life-changing opportunity!’ and feeling like a complete and utter fraud. So, my ‘what do I wish people knew’ moment was: You’re a natural sales person. You just need someone to show you how to translate it into writing.

Now, back to you. What’s your realisation?

Step 3. Scrawl your realisation in your notebook, up the top of a new page. 

Congratulations, you’ve got one good idea! That’s all you need. Now let’s feed that little baby until he’s popping buttons and overflowing with bountiful content goodness.

Step 4. Brainstorm everything and anything to do with your realisation. 

For example, if I want to talk to people about sales pages (this is a real example by the way, I’ll actually be doing this over the next few months) stuff that pops up is:

What is a sales page? Do you really need one? What should you have on your sales page? Should your sales page be long or short? Is there an easy way to write your sales page? Is there a sales page formula? What’s a good conversion rate for sales pages? Should you have a special offer on your sales page? How do you get people to read your sales page? What’s the most important element of a sales page? What are the sales page mistakes? What make a good sales page? Etc. Etc.

I could keep going, but you get the gist.

One idea, 13 + branched-out, fleshed-out, juicy content topics.

Because that’s what that ‘stuff’ is: blog topics. Article ideas.

Every single question I just came up with can be transformed into a blog. And it’ll be short, sweet, strategic and targeted which means it’ll likely be muchos effective.

Best of all, it didn’t take me hours to figure out. I just let my creative mind do the heavy lifting while I scribbled down the stuff that came up.

Step 5. Translating it into a blog strategy. 

Want to take it up a notch? Use your article ideas and create a content map that’ll take your reader on a journey from A to Z. Not only will this feel awesome for your reader, but it’ll also make your content more strategic and effective.

For example, I’d start with ‘What the hell is a sales page anyway?’ and introduce the basic elements of a sales page before diving into something like ‘Typical conversion rate for good sales pages’.

And don’t forget to include your call to action. How can YOU help your reader achieve their goals? What have you got up your sleeve for them? This can be a free opt-in or eBook, or even a link to your paid offerings.

It’s okay to give free info AND generate leads. You’re allowed.

For instance … if I’ve sparked your interest with sales pages, make sure you head over and check out my sales page copywriting. I LOVE crafting sales pages that sell (without sleaze) and would adore the opportunity to work with your bad-ass self.

See? That wasn’t so bad.

Now go forth and generate content ideas, my worthy friend!

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Is your muse MIA? Here’s how to find her.

Creative Inspiration - Cassandra

Softly-spoken. Boldly evocative. Wholeheartedly transformational. She is a divine storyteller. A mythical artist. A heart-fuelled creative genius. She whispers to the dreamers. Romances the visionaries. Seduces the seekers.  She is … your muse.

Ever sat down at your desk and immediately felt inspiration flow from your fingertips, as naturally and easily as breathing? Or maybe you were driving to work, taking a shower or doing your grocery shopping and suddenly it hit you: the idea.

The muse has many names (imagination, inspiration, creativity), but one thing is certain: she’s a flighty, emotional minx. 

By your side one minute but nowhere to be found the next, her arrival and departure is less predictable than a Game of Thrones episode. Which is why it’s so easy to get caught up in thoughts like, ‘That brilliant idea was a fluke,” and “I’ll never be able to write and create like that again,” and “My best work is behind me.”

But just because your muse is loveably spontaneous, that doesn’t mean you should give up on her or view her with suspicion or distrust. In fact, the better your relationship with your muse, the better your creativity and ability to create will be.

With that in mind, here are four tried-and-tested ways to find – and woo – your creative muse.

Drop your expectations.

Think that just because you’re ready to work, your muse should show up too? Not so, my friend. Your muse has places to be and people to inspire. You can’t lock a free spirit down.

Sometimes I’ll sit in front of my computer, ready for the brilliance to cascade from my mind onto the page, but instead I’ll be left staring at garbled, crappy nonsense. So I’ll come back again the next day. And the next. And the next. Until eventually, my muse will appear, or my words start to glisten and shine all on their own. By removing my expectations, I’m setting myself up for success. Firstly, because my muse will more likely to appear. And secondly, even if she doesn’t, I’ve got it covered. Persistence pays.

Create an environment she is welcome in. 

Would you revisit a café that was dirty, unorganised, rude and lazy with their food delivery? Yeah, I wouldn’t either. And yet, we often expect our inspiration to thrive in less-than-stellar environments.

Your work ethic, willingness to search for originality (even without inspiration) and attitude towards creative ventures all impact the environment you create for your muse.

And if she’s MIA, it might be because your ‘café’ isn’t such a nice place to hang out in. Focus on you, do some physical and mental detoxing and focus on getting your cafe clean, sparkling and decidedly welcoming.

Give her space.

Nobody likes a clinger. And clinging to your muse will only strangle and suffocate her, making it less likely that she’ll come back and visit you again.

Give her – and you! –  some space to breathe and process things. This might mean long walks in nature, taking time to meditate before you work and spending an afternoon cloud-watching. However you find mental space, embrace it. It will do you both the world of good.

Be willing to search for your muse.

And finally, if she’s not showing up in her regular haunts, there’s probably a reason for it. Your creative muse loves playing hide and seek; she knows it’s one of the best ways to rediscover your inner child and revive your imagination.

So if your muse hasn’t been gifting you with her presence lately, set out on an adventure to find her. Go somewhere you love visiting (but perhaps rarely have time to). See a new show or movie, try out a different hobby or ask a friend or lover to take you on a ‘mystery date’ to help you woo and invoke your inspiration again.

At the very least, you’ll have a good time searching for her!

Because part of what makes your muse so beguiling is her ability to float into your life, deliver her inspiration, and then dance back out again – all before you’ve fully comprehended her divine gift.

So to ensure she keeps coming back make sure you drop the expectations, loosen the reins and refuse to take her for granted. Imagine that she’s a beautiful, seductive goddess that blesses you (a mere mortal!) with her presence. Let her drift in and through your life as she pleases. But be willing to make yourself irresistible and lure her in for regular visits too …

Happy muse hunting!

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