Need an Idea? Just Walk Away…

Are you trying to come up with a creative idea that’s eluding you? Whether it’s a great idea for an article, the basis for a new campaign or some way to improve a current situation, it can be frustrating to come up with nothing. But don’t let frustration get the best of you! Following are some tips on inspiring some creativity in your life:

–> As the title of this post implies, walk away! Sometimes the best ideas come to us when we’re doing something completely unrelated to the task at hand. Go see a movie, spend time with family or friends or have fun with a hobby you enjoy.

–> Have a brainstorming session. No, you shouldn’t have left these powerful pow-wows behind in college. Write down every idea; nothing is too silly or worth skipping over. Giant sticky notes to stick to walls are great, but that could just be my affinity for sticky notes. If you don’t have anyone near to bounce ideas off of, take advantage of social media. Hold a chat on Twitter (use a hash tag to follow your conversation) or take advantage of the group capabilities on Google+.

–>Get physical. Go for a walk, run or bike ride, even for a short duration. Stuck at work? Take a walk up and down the stairs or around the parking lot. Physical activity engages our brains and can help the juices flow.

–> Write it down. Yes, I can be old fashioned when it comes to certain things. However, paper still serves a purpose in this digital age. The power of putting pen (or pencil, crayon or marker) to paper can do wonders compared to being overwhelmed by a blinking cursor on a blank screen.

–> Embrace failure. Creative people aren’t necessarily geniuses; they just keep trying. Most great inventions came after thousands upon thousands of failures. To keep this in mind, remember this great quote. “Accept failure. Enjoy it, even. Embrace the suck, for the suck is part of the process.” –A.J. Jacobs

–> Look at the challenge from a different point of view — literally or figuratively. Sit on the floor or look out your window. Ask yourself how others view the situation. Remember, there’s at least two sides to every issue.

I hope one or more of these tips help you the next time you’re in a creative bind. Or do you have a tried-and-true solution that you turn to when the creative wheels are stuck? If so, I’d love to hear it! Please let me know in the comments section. I’m looking forward to hearing your ideas!

Cheers,
Jaime

Who are you talking to?

Determining your target audience can make or break your campaign or message. Basically, who are you talking to? By narrowing down your target audience, you will save money, resources and receive a higher ROI (return on investment).

For example, direct mail can be a great way to break through the clutter of advertising today. A clear message, effective graphics and personalization can all help your marketing piece hit home. However, it won’t do much good if you send your message to recipients who won’t be interested or have no use for your product or service. Also, you’ll end up spending more money than necessary, receiving a low ROI and wasting materials.

A prime example –> I received a direct mail piece from a cable/phone/Internet provider advertising a great rate for new subscribers. The problem? I was already a subscriber, and therefore, not eligible for the rate. Not only did the company waste money, paper and ink, they irritated a good customer. The special rate was well below what I was paying for the same services.

So when you’re planning a new marketing message or campaign, stop and think about who you’re talking to.

–Who is most likely to be interested or have a need for your products or services?
–What is the best way (or ways) to reach this audience?
–What type of message will cause this audience to respond?
–What’s the best call to action for the crowd you’re targeting?

Narrow your focus to the right target audience, and your message is more likely to get through.

I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Cheers,
Jaime

An Introduction

Thanks for visiting my blog! It’s a pleasure to meet you virtually, and I’m looking forward to getting to know you and your business in more detail. I hope that you find my little online haven a great place to pick up valuable marketing tips, from communicating clearly to event planning and more. If you have any questions, please ask!

First, an introduction. I’m Jaime Shine, Owner of Clearly Conveyed Communications, and a creative and multitalented marketing consultant with valuable experience in event planning and writing for various platforms and audiences. I love utilizing strong written and verbal communication to maximize the impact of your message. Market research, brainstorming, strategizing and planning are all pieces of the puzzle too.

See, while most kids were playing with blocks or dolls, I was publishing magazines and newspapers – feature articles, ads, sports box scores, the whole nine yards. From promotions director to advertising roles to branding projects, I’ve always been interested in all forms of marketing. That interest blossomed into a career path and led me to open my own business, which has always been a dream of mine.

Yes, I’m a dreamer. Hence the head in the clouds blog name. I’m a big believer that you can achieve anything that you set your mind to and work hard enough for. What are your dreams? For your business? For yourself? I’m hoping that I can help you achieve those dreams by delving into my marketing-focused mind and offering some insight. From innovative ideas to clear, creative copy to successful strategies and more, I’m ready to help you move forward.

Until next time,
Jaime