If I have learned one thing since starting this blog in 2007, and in running the daily blog at chickenmonkeydog, it is this: when inspiration hits, capture that feeling, those thoughts or that picture right away. Don’t let the moment escape and leave you lamenting “Only if …” Generating quality blog content for our small businesses is tough; we cannot afford to let any good content ideas slips away.
Four tips for capturing inspiration
So, to help improve our ability to harness those sudden burst of inspiration, I have shared a few tips to ensure that we capture those inspirational moments in a timely fashion.
1. Write it down
In the technical age, there is still great value in keeping a pen and paper handy at all times. With a little notebook and pen stuffed into our pocket or bag, we can easily jot our thoughts down. Write as much as we need to capture the full thought and spirit of the idea. If we have the opportunity to do so, take as much time as we need to be complete. It is time well spent.
2. Send an email
If we’ve access to the internet, we can email ourselves the key points from our brainstorm. Depending on our work flows, having our thoughts in an email can help us organize and store them too. An added benefit of this approach is that we’ll have these thoughts in the cloud in case we want to refer back to them later. We should use a idea-specific subject line to help us find the email later.
3. Leave a voicemail
For old school people whose phone only makes telephone calls and sends text messages, we can call and leave ourselves a voicemail. In just a few minutes — or longer if we need it — we can leave ourselves a detailed auditory note that we can check and re-check later. Don’t forget to transcribe the voicemail when we have time. This saves us from mourning our accidental deletion of that message.
4. Snap a photo
If we have a smart phone, we can capture the inspiration with a photo. We can use the camera to take pictures of more than just smiling faces and captivating landscapes. We can photograph anything to save it as a visual record: signs, ads, meeting minutes, business cards, whatever! We can always type up whatever notes we’ve photographed at a later date.
Organizing those notes
While the first half of this blog post focused on capturing our creative ideas and inspirations for our small business blogs, the second half deals with storing and organizing the notes we generated documenting those ideas.
For the smart phone user, I have a wonderful recommendation: Evernote. It is a great app for capturing, storing and searching all the little notes we generate during our business day. Integrating smoothly with both the iPhone and the computer, Evernote allows for all notes to be titled, tagged and stored in the cloud. Check out the overview video (for Mac) from Evernote below:
With the right tools in place, and a bit of practice, we will be well on our way to writing better blogs posts as we will have a method for capturing and storing ideas and inspirations for blog topics as and when they hit us.