by Angel Flores
Whether it’s for school, for work, or maybe a big anniversary surprise, running out of ideas is frustrating. But what’s even more frustrating is when you have a deadline to catch thus, you must hurry with the production of these ideas inside your head. Most especially when we talk about the Advertising Industry—take it from me, the production of these ads are no joke. Stephen Vogel, Chief Creative Officer from Ogilvy & Mather Germany said that, “Nothing is more efficient than creative advertising. Creative advertising is more memorable, longer lasting, works with less media spending, and builds a fan community…faster.”
The former Vice President of J Walter Thompson, James Web Young, developed one of the most popular approaches to creativity in advertising called Young’s Five-Step Model of Creative Process which are, (1) Immersion, the gathering of data and immersing yourself in the problem, (2) Digestion, processing the gathered information in your mind, (3) Incubation, passing these information to your subconscious, (4) Illumination, the birth of an idea, (5) Reality or Verification, this is where you start to shape your idea to the actual use or execution.
Catching that big idea for your ads does not always come easy. It’s like you have to wring your brain to squeeze out these amazing ideas. But more often than not, panicking never works. So here are a few tips I came up with to help you hit the big idea.
- Don’t fret.
Breathe, wringing your head does not work. Let the creative juices flow as how they should, no rushing. Instead of panicking because of the deadline, do something that relaxes you. Maybe watching a movie or two or three or maybe reading a book? But too much relaxing won’t impress your boss, so maybe just one movie will do. Besides, EVR Advertising from Manchester, N.H. wrote that, “Creative teams are known to produce results when under the pressure of the last minute deadline”. So you just have to find the best motivation to get your creative juices flowing. And again, DO NOT PANIC.
- Make sure you aren’t tired. If you are, a nap won’t hurt.
Those billion dollar ideas won’t come out of you if you are exhausted. According to the National Sleep Foundation, adults should sleep an average of 7-9 hours a day. Make sure you count your hours of sleep. However, naps are deceiving and disguise themselves as what they truly are—a trap. So also make sure before taking these ‘naps’, set a thousand alarms so that you wouldn’t fall into that trap that is hibernating.
- Go through anything you’re enthusiastic about.
If the entire aforementioned still isn’t working, maybe go through small things that inspire you. Maybe it’s browsing something of your interest or maybe it’s just walking around to get some air while listening to music. Clear your head, get off the clutter. Sometimes those ideas just come when you least expect it.
- Write them down.
An idea may not be the right one, but there is no such thing as a bad idea. Although there are impossible or dangerous ideas, so maybe writing them down is the best option. Also, there are no ideas that are non-sense. In fact, ‘non-sense’ could sometimes lead you to that amazing idea. After writing them all down, go through that list and scrap off what is not best for today.
- Choose your best idea and save what you scrapped for today.
There’s no such thing as a bad idea. What might not work for today may be the million dollar idea tomorrow. There are also unfortunate instances that the big idea that will win you the pitch in the future is written on a used table napkin that you threw along the alley. So spare yourself a future headache and keep that list of big ideas.
- Reinartz & Saffert (June 2013), Harvard Business Review Creativity in Advertising: When It Works and When It Doesn’t
- Shared by Smiriti Chand, Your Article Library: Young’s Five-Step Model Of Creative Process in Advertising a Product
- Johnson (2015), EVR Advertising: Things You Might Not Know about Your Ad Agency’s Creative Process