Marketing success depends, at least partially, on the strength of the creative in your advertising. You may have the better product, the lowest price, or a longer history in the market than your closest competitor, but if your marketing messages are boring or weak, people aren't going to give you a second look or listen.
Creativity is what makes you stand out in a world bombarded with advertising. It differentiates you from your competitors, and it makes you more memorable in your customers' minds.
So, the solution is easy: come up with more creative ideas!
Except…it isn't always easy. But before you find yourself feeling hopeless, try these strategies to come up with more creative ideas in your own campaigns:
Check on your competitors.
Your competitors probably have similar goals, products, and audiences as you, meaning you may have similar goals and objectives in your marketing campaign. So, how can you come up with something that separates you?
Take a chance on a campaign that’s interesting to the eyes and ears of your potential customers, and don’t copy your competitors’ campaigns. If your competition’s messages revolve around lowest price, maybe you take the angle of “you get what you pay for.” If they focus on “best selection,” maybe you focus on how passionate and knowledgeable your staff is. If their ads are serious, maybe you come in with something funny and light-hearted. Remember, the more fun you have with your brand, the more fun your customers will have with you as well!
Pay attention to what intrigues you.
Many business owners get so bogged down in thinking about what other people might be interested in, they neglect the first-person perspective of the encounter. Remember that if something naturally intrigues YOU, it will probably intrigue someone else.
For example, did that billboard get you to turn your head? Ask yourself why. Did that jingle on the radio or TV commercial stick in your mind for days? Ask yourself why. Take the elements you enjoyed most and introduce them into your next campaign!
Stop throwing out bad ideas.
Ask anyone who has ever come up with something sticky, brilliant, or different, and they'll probably tell you two things: 1) the idea sounded insane the first time that they thought it up. 2) the idea started in a place that was too over the top and was brought down just a couple of notches until it was perfect.
Never throw out what you think are the “bad” ideas. Instead, keep them around to see if you can tinker with them and turn them into something more interesting. And don't be afraid to take a risk on something different!
Keep in mind that YOU don’t have to come up with all the ideas yourself. There are many people in the marketing world who craft and create campaigns for a living. If you have a starter idea that you really like, great! Pass it along to your partners in marketing, and let the creatives go to work so that you can focus on the rest of your business!
The next time you hear or see an ad idea that you really like, make a mental note and try incorporating that idea into your own marketing campaign. By keeping an eye on your competition, jotting down ideas that you like, and having a more open-minded approach to your marketing, you’re sure to stumble upon some big creative ideas that will bring you more business!