If you want a great idea, paint a fence!

Creative ideas

I am often asked, how it is that after more than 28 years in the creative business, I am still able to come up with new ideas to promote the services and products of my clients. Well the truth of it all is that I don’t really know, it just happens. Don’t get me wrong, not all ideas are instant and easily found, some take a good deal of thinking about but usually the best ideas come to me when I am not thinking about them. The human brain is a wonderful thing and I have found that the more I worry about what I am going to propose to my client the harder it is to produce that great idea.

It’s true that sometimes, after discussing the project with my client, I can form an idea before I leave their office. In essence, sometimes the concept comes from the client often without them being aware of it and I find it is my job to ask the right questions in the right order to get the right result. When this happens I can’t wait to get back to my studio to put the ideas into practice and start fine tuning them ready for the return trip and presentation.

But what about the ideas that aren’t immediate. Firstly, I am not of the mind that an instant idea is always possible and with a more complicated brief usually it will take a while to put into order all of the details of the project in hand. Usually in this instance I find it useful to switch off from the project and go and do something else, and here’s what I have found.

The best way to come up with an idea is to do something that requires little or no real concentration… like paint a fence! Of course other activities are also available such as walking the dog or cutting the grass. You see, the way I see it, is that by relaxing the mind it is possible to “just let things happen”. I suppose that this is the way meditation works but not being taught this mysterious technique I can only guess. There is a saying “can’t see the wood from the trees” meaning that sometimes we are too caught up in the enormity of the task that we can’t see what’s starring us in the face.

So what to do with that great idea when it finally surfaces. Well when I finally have the idea, putting it to good use is really what my business is about. Making sure that the message is understood and gets the desired results whether it is simply a project to strengthen the brand image or a call to action leading to a new customer sale.

At PRS we are more than happy to work with our clients ideas, in fact we generally like to see ourselves as working WITH our clients and not FOR them. Using our clients experience and knowledge about their products and services and our creative and marketing expertise is often the best recipe for success. Many great ideas go untouched so once you have your idea, don’t talk yourself out of it. By all means run the idea past a trusted colleague or friend associated with your business and then with the “thumbs up” give us a call.