What the Best Halloween Costume of 2013 Can Teach You About Creativity

By Jerod Morris

Edgar Allen Ho creative Halloween costume

Right now you are probably thinking, Wow … what a unique idea for a Halloween costume.

But is it really?

Edgar Allan Poe always gets plenty of play come Halloween time, thanks to his reputation for the macabre. And there is perhaps no greater Halloween tradition outside of the pumpkin itself than females donning the sexy nurse/cop/maid costume.

Two Halloween clichés. What’s so special about that?

The brilliance of this costume lies in the creative merging of two common but disparate ideas into a totally fresh, attention-grabbing combination.

And therein lies the simple but essential lesson about creativity that you can learn from Edgar Allan Ho.

What does it mean to be creative?

You cannot be successful in content marketing without being creative.

In a field crowded with competition, the reality is that there are only so many topics that can be written about … so the likelihood of you conjuring up a wholly new one is slim.

(Sorry to burst your bubble.)

Even if you do, one single totally-and-completely brand new idea is a post, or at most a series. It is not a content marketing strategy.

But what you can do, every single day if you like, is come up with creative ways to educate your readers about topics they are more than likely already familiar with.

Explain old advice in a new way.

Spin current events in a different direction.

Or as seen above, combine disparate topics into newly blended ideas.

Creativity is not conjuring up new dots — everything under the sun has been done, remember? No, creativity is making connections others do not see between the dots that already exist.

Edgar Allen Poe and sexy maids have been around for years and years and years. But it took creativity, and a bit of clever wordplay, to connect these dots. The result is a unique Halloween costume where the whole is far more entertaining than the sum of its parts.

Are you doing the same with your content?

How to be creative with content marketing

Look to Sonia’s post from yesterday for a lesson in content marketing creativity. A quick review of the post’s subheads shows that no single, brilliant, new idea is introduced in the post:

  • Give yourself space to create
  • Refine your strengths
  • Beware of social media …

These are all useful ideas, yes, but they are not new. Sonia did not create these ideas.

What she did create is a smart, relevant, new way to package them: as “ways to protect your entrepreneurial confidence.”

It’s a creative post comprised entirely of well-worn ideas.

Each idea on its own is something you’ve heard before. Ho hum.

But together, with their forces combined, they form a shield that protects entrepreneurial confidence … something to which we can say “Hell yeah!”

That’s creative content marketing, and you can do it, too. You just need to find new ways to connect the old information already in your head and the new information you learn every day.

And it’s not some magic ability that only a few have. It’s a skill.

Trick and treat?

The trick is simply training yourself to do it. Train yourself to not just think outside the box, but to actually create new boxes to think within, new boxes that you can put old thoughts into.

Mix them up. See how they interact.

The treat is when they click. Then you’ve got something creative to say, your content has a chance of standing out in the massively cluttered Internet crowd, and you’re on the path toward content marketing success.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go procure a black mustache, a scarf, some aviator sunglasses, and a pastel-colored Polo shirt with a collar I can pop — because …

Edgar Allan Bro is about to get his Halloween party on.

Image credit: Reddit

About the author

Jerod Morris

Jerod Morris is the Director of Content for Copyblogger Media and a founding member of the Synthesis Managed WordPress Hosting team. Get more from Jerod on Twitter and .

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