radio-hed-logo1by Jeffrey Hedquist

Here’s a variation on brainstorming. Assemble a series of cards (your brainstorming group can help you develop these) with one topic on each. Regular 3 x 5 file cards work fine for this. One set of cards describes relationships: mother and son, talent agent and star, insurance salesman and prospective purchaser, garage mechanic and car owner, music teacher and child prodigy. You get the idea

A second set of cards would be situations: a discussion of where to go for dinner, purchase of anything (new car, house, socks), first date, divorce, birth of a child, winning the lottery.

A third set of cards would be locale, where the scene takes place: coin collectors’ convention, parking lot at Wal-Mart, surface of the moon, tunnel beneath Ft. Knox. Each set of cards can have unlimited possibilities. You’ll think of more as you listen to all the sound bites in your audio library.

Here’s how the game works. Shuffle the cards in each of three distinct piles and turn them face down. One person randomly picks and holds up the relationship card, another person a situation card, and the third person a locale card, and you start brainstorming. Create a commercial based on those three elements. It could be a family at dinner discussing hairstyles, the first day on the job for a door-to-door piano salesman in a campground...or it could be three conversations adrift in an Internet chat room. The possibilities are endless. Putting these elements together in unusual ways can and will create commercial ideas.

© 2000 Hedquist Productions, Inc.