Innovative Advertising Solutions Blog

Innovative Advertising Solutions

7 ideas to get your advertising team’s creative juices flowing

26 June 2013 · By Tami Coughlan

As advertising clients continue to demand more creativity, news media companies must come up with ways to keep giving it to them. From the size of your brainstorming group to its caffeine intake, here are some ideas to keep you open-minded and on track.

“It’s easy to come up with new ideas; the hard part is letting go of what worked for you two years ago but will soon be out of date.” —  Roger von Oech.

Innovative advertising is all about the ideas and how we develop them into effective programmes that help our clients drive their businesses.

Marketing platforms and consumer habits are changing so rapidly that we need to be constantly evolving and innovating just to keep up.

Sometimes that means stepping out of our comfort zones into uncharted territory to find something spectacular. 

There are some people, like Toronto Star Creative Director Lorne Silver, who have an ability to uncover new ideas within minutes of a request. Sometimes seconds. For others (like me), it takes time and a bit of a process.

Over the past few years, we have learned a few tricks that have helped the team to efficiently bring forward great ideas for our clients and stakeholders. Not all of these are ground breaking discoveries, but nonetheless may be useful for your teams.

  1. Do your homework: Before you gather the masses to a brainstorm, do some background research on your client, her brand, targets, assets, and past campaigns with you and your competitors. This provides a solid foundation from which to build great ideas that support their strategy, brand personality, and leverage their assets.

  2. Brainstorm: More minds are better than one. Once you do your homework, huddle together for the creative process. You know the drill. There are no bad ideas and this is not the time to critique. Just get as many ideas on the table as possible. The brainstorming process doesn’t need to be serious. Have some fun.

  3. Keep it small(ish): It’s tempting to want to include everyone in the idea process. But large groups can be counter-productive to the creative process.

  4. Step out of your comfort zone: As Roger van Oech says, it’s difficult to let go of what is proven to work. Innovation is about what is next. Don’t discount ideas because they don’t fit within the current product specifications or guidelines. Break the rules with ideas – then build them out and get buy in.

  5. Have a coffee: No scientific proof in this one, but creating a casual environment outside the boardroom facilitates a casual vibe and comfortable dialogue. And caffeine keeps everyone energised.

  6. Time: Allow for some time after the initial brainstorm to let it all sink in. “Stew” a little. Some of the best ideas come after the brainstorm is done.

  7. Think like a CMO: Evaluate your ideas and make sure they pass the test on key marketing objectives for your clients.

By no means is this list exhaustive of tips and tricks for the creative process, but a few that have worked for us, most of the time.

In my search for a great quote on creativity, it was difficult to settle on just one. So just for fun, here are a few more:

“Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you think if only you try.” – Dr. Seuss.

“Creativity comes from the conflict of ideas.” – Donatella Versace.

“Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it. They just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while.” – Steve Jobs.

print article send to friend

blog comments powered by Disqus
About this blog

The Innovative Advertising Solutions Blog looks at not only integrated advertising sales for newsmedia companies but the full spectrum of agency-level marketing solutions for advertisers: print, digital, package, and event sales; social media marketing services on behalf of advertisers; and behavioural targeting across a range of digital products.

Meet the bloggers

Adam Burnham
Senior Vice President, Interactive Sales and Services
Affinity Express
Elgin, Illinois, USA
send message

Brooke Christofferson
Vice President of Client Strategy
Phoenix, Arizona, USA
send message

Philippe Guay
Executive Vice President, Strategic Partnerships
New York, New York, USA
send message

Darrell Kunken
Director of Research/Market Analysis
The Sacramento Bee
Sacramento, California, USA
send message

Wayne Morgan
Digital Director
Norwich, United Kingdom
send message



Blog archives

November 2015 ( 4 )
October 2015 ( 2 )
September 2015 ( 3 )
August 2015 ( 3 )
July 2015 ( 2 )
June 2015 ( 2 )
May 2015 ( 3 )
April 2015 ( 4 )
March 2015 ( 4 )
February 2015 ( 3 )
January 2015 ( 2 )
December 2014 ( 3 )
November 2014 ( 3 )
October 2014 ( 2 )
September 2014 ( 3 )
August 2014 ( 2 )
July 2014 ( 4 )
June 2014 ( 2 )
May 2014 ( 3 )
April 2014 ( 2 )

Join INMA Today
Upcoming Events
INMA Global Media Awards
Dallas, United States
29 January 2016
INMA Mobile Summit
San Francisco, United States
10-11 March 2016
INMA Ideas Day on Advertising
Frankfurt, Germany
11 March 2016
Big Data for Media Week
New York, United States
11-15 April 2016
INMA World Congress
London, United Kingdom
22-24 May 2016
INMA European News Media Conference
Nice, France
14-17 September 2016
INMA Latin American News Media Conference
Panama City, Panama
22-23 September 2016

More Events

Member Profiles

  • Christian Springmuhl

  • Michelle Krans
    United States

  • Carlos Jornet

  • Brooke Christofferson
    United States

  • Randall Keith
    United States

  • Lynn Klein-Rosner
    United States

©2015 INMA | Home | About | Contact | RSS | Privacy