by Jeffrey Hedquist
Having trouble breaking writers’ block? Don’t give up, bring in more brains! Do a radio mind-meld. Gather 2-5 people in a room, turn on a tape recorder, take notes, and have everyone fire out suggestions
Don’t say no to any of them, no matter how outrageous, inappropriate, or bad they might seem. You want to keep the flow going. The best thing you can say is, “Great. Where else can we take that approach? What’s an extension of that? How much further can we take that idea?”
Create an atmosphere of acceptance, so no one feels shy about contributing. Keep it light and fun. Celebrate the contributions. Evaluate the ideas later.
Invite people you might not ordinarily think of—not just writers, but art directors, account executives, web designers, the janitor. You’ll be surprised at the useful ideas you get from people you’d least expect to come up with them.
Keep the session to 20 minutes.
You’ll come away with more ideas for your clients’ spots than you could possibly use. You’ll get ideas for future campaigns and ideas for clients you don’t even have yet. Keep the tape and notes in a file you can refer to when the creative well runs dry.
The power of many brains storming together cannot be quantified. One suggestion will inspire other ones. You’ll go off on tangents that you never had envisioned yourself. Remember, you don’t have to do it all yourself.
© 1999 Hedquist Productions, Inc.