When it comes to standing out from the crowd, it can be difficult to consistently come up with fresh and unique ideas that set you apart and get your business noticed. Even the most creative people can have trouble maintaining the high demands that can come with pumping out content week after week regardless of the medium for which that content is intended. From blogs to social media content and new ad campaigns, inspiration can begin to dry up and burnout can set in, leaving you frantically hunting for some way to get those creative juices flowing again.
Staying true to your brand while giving consumers a clear understanding of what makes your brand, product or service unique and valuable to them in an attractive and compelling way is crucial to the success of your marketing efforts. Even if your business has the answers to their most important problems it won’t matter if you don’t have effective ways of reaching them.
Today we are going to throw you a bone (well five bones) to help you find inspiration, get creative and stand out from the crowd when you feel like you’re lacking in the creativity department.
#1 Revisit Old Ideas with Fresh Eyes
There is a saying that says there are “no new stories”. And while that is debatable, one thing we can say for certain is even IF there are no new stories, there will always be new ways to tell them.
Our first tip is to look to the past. Review previous concepts that were extremely successful from viral videos to popular ads or any piece that produced high conversions. Gather members of your team to review all of the collateral that was spawned from the concept and roundtable how you could create a continuation of that theme or alter it altogether.
There is another saying we are going to bless you with, “Don’t fix what isn’t broken”. If something worked well in the past, it may not need much alteration. Embrace the fact that an old idea can be recycled and improved by performing minor tweaks or merely implementing the concept on new mediums or platforms.
#2 Turn to the Unexpected
Within your team, you may have a group of “usual suspects” you turn to when it comes to the creative process and “fresh ideas” or there may be a single “creator” among you that has been deemed your business’s personal idea factory. Regardless of who is typically the “creative” one, our next tip is to turn to the unexpected!
You heard us correctly. When a creative wall has officially been hit, making a hard right to the people you typically never approach for these types of projects can be just the flame you need to burn down that wall.
While these unexpected team members are familiar with your brand, products or services, they aren’t ever asked to contribute to creative conversations, but odds are some or all of them will have had an idea or two over the years. This is a great opportunity to not only make them feel heard but to hear fresh ideas from people with another perspective.
#3 Get Creative
We know, we know. That was totally “on the nose” but hear us out! Just like with #2, when you’ve tapped out your creative team, the best way to get new ideas is to ask NEW people. In our previous tip we told you to look internally to members of your team who aren’t typically included in creative, idea generating conversations. For our third tip we are telling you to get REALLY creative and look externally!
Use social media to reach out to your audience for help. Send an email out to your client list. Ask a few loyal customers to come in for a round table survey. There are many ways you try this concept but the key is to connect with people who are outside of your organization that are familiar with your brand, product and services and use them to inspire or provide inspiration.
One idea would be to hold a social media competition where you provided a tagline and then asked participants to submit “ads” of their own. Participants could choose the medium, messaging, look, etc. and before you know it you will have tons of new ideas to inspire your own team or even use as a cool continuation of the competition providing potentially months worth of content.
#4 Look to Your Competition
They say imitation is the best form of flattery, but we say imitation is just laziness. Instead, our fourth tip wants you to look to your competition but only for inspiration NOT imitation. Spend time reviewing multiple competitors. Generate a spreadsheet of topics, themes, tactics and any other details that inspire you, are relevant to your business, were especially successful, or were consistent among multiple competitors.
Once you create this spreadsheet, bring together members of your team from various departments (remember tip #2!) and review each item as a launch point for brainstorming rather than a final list. Make sure they do not see or know where these concepts came from allowing them to genuinely bounce unique ideas off one another without subconsciously reverting back to the competitors exact concept.
This is a great way to use your competition without plagiarizing them and staying true to YOUR brand.
#5 Look to the Future
And finally, tip #5, look to the future! A sure fire way to get inspired is to research some of the emerging trends, technology and techniques that are coming to your industry. From innovative software and tools to the latest trainings and educational opportunities, learning about the latest and greatest can not only inspire you to update your business offerings but can inspire you to take what could be outdated ways of thinking about your industry and transform them into new and exciting concepts perfect for your next marketing campaign, social media strategy or ad series.
While repetition and lack of evolution can hinder creativity, new and exciting changes to your industry can rejuvenate business owners and employees alike, encouraging them to come up with new ideas.
In a world where marketing comes at consumers from all angles, it is more important than ever to be creative and authentic so that your messaging stands out among not only your competition, but also the sea of other businesses trying to grab your audience’s attention. While it can be a tall order to always be on your creative game, thinking outside the box and finding inspiration from all angles will alleviate the pressure and stress that is ultimately holding back your creative process.
At Vinci Digital, our team is well versed at working alongside brands to find new and creative ways to tell their stories while effectively reaching their target audiences. We understand the importance of standing out while also staying true to your brand values. We would love to help your business out of your creative rut and into an impactful strategy that will ensure your businesses growth.
Contact us today to learn more about how your business can benefit from a customized marketing strategy and a team of experienced marketing professionals working to make your business stand out from the crowd.