» A few (or 6) ways to capture creative ideas HouseOfBrew – Unplugged and Brewed

A few (or 6) ways to capture creative ideas

I was chatting with a group of community managers last week in the Community Manager Hangout hosted by Tim McDonald and the topic of creativity came up.  We discussed whether or not you had to be creative as a community manager and also where the best content ideas come from.  Everyone had some great tips and tricks about getting creative, but we all agreed that capturing them when they come unannounced is key.  Here are just a few of the ways to make sure you’re ready to capture a creative idea when it surfaces:

1) List.ly
List.ly is all about lists – creating them and consuming them.  They also have an awesome way to embed the list into your site/blog.  Lists are a great way to capture ideas as well as get ideas by reading other people’s list creations.

2)  Voice recorder
You have one of these on your phone.  Add a shortcut to it on your home screen.  Capture your ideas when you’re driving, cooking, or having a conversation with someone else.  Capture the passion when you just need to rant about something.  It’s also a crazy fast way to start the capturing.  Some people sleep with the phone next to them – so if you sleep alone, feel free to talk to yourself and record it.

3) WordPress Drafts
What better place for blog ideas than your blog drafts!  Bang out a quick title and a few sentences if you have an idea for a post.  Don’t worry about finishing it right away or editing it.  Capture the raw thoughts flowing from your brain into your fingertips.

4) Evernote
Install this on everything you own.  Your phone, your tablet, and your desktops will all be synced – so you can capture a thought on the ipad and edit it later on your phone and finish it on your desktop.  Never throw away ideas.

5) A notepad (non virtual)
Every once in a while, you’ll be without battery.  Carry an actual notebook and attached pen (with string and tape) in your backpack or briefcase or purse.  It can be any size.  Get in the habit of writing in it each morning when you wake up – about whatever it is that’s currently on your mind.

6) Video
Record a debate or discussion on some topics with friends.  Go back and watch it and take notes – there’s bound to be a blog post or two that you can formulate.

See that comment area below?  Share what you use, so we can all learn. Thanks!

  • tobyboyce

    No sure about the video one. That would seem to lead to aritificial discussions for at least part of the discussion.

    Personally, I more enjoy the traditional old fashioned yellow legal pad riding beside me as I drive and jotting a quick note to myself. I’ve tried all the others but it just keeps coming back to that old fashioned if I write it down I remember it better.

    • houseofbrew

      My thought on the video are 2 fold.  1) if you are already doing a video – go back and watch it.  Sometimes you’re so focused on what you’re going to say next – you miss the nugget of wisdom someone else said.  2) It take some getting use to, but just general sit down chats captured on video do make for great ideas.  You don’t have to plan to use the video for any sort of production – it takes the stress off of everyone.

      Old fashion writing is a great way to capture ideas.  Just be careful while you’re driving :)

  • KenBurns

    How about creating a quick Idea Challenge, and share it with your audience. Everyone can submit their own ideas, you can comment, rate, in an intuitive way. 

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