By Arthur Solomon for PRNews
Public relations brainstorming sessions, or creative meetings, can be the equivalent of a double-edged sword for those attending.
On the one hand, account execs who attend the session will get the opportunity to show their creativity, if they are truly creative. The flip side is that those who can’t come up with anything original might be doomed.
Often at creative meetings, the facilitator will begin the session by saying, “If you have an idea, say it. There’s no such thing as a bad idea.”
I never believed that nonsensical opening statement, because there are usually more bad ideas than good ones. Experience shows that continually throwing out really bad ideas means you’ll never again be invited to a creative session.
Below are tips I’ve discovered over the years that can make you shine at your next brainstorm session.
Even the most creative individual should prepare for the meeting by studying the material sent prior to the session.
After studying the material, divide a piece of paper into thirds. On one third, list any ideas from past programs that you know about that might also work for the new program being discussed. In another column, write down any modifications of the “old” ideas to make them “new.” The third column should contain only your new original ideas.
Eliminate the weakest of the ideas in each column.
Then divide another piece of paper into three columns, one titled “client,” another “media” and the third “works for both.” Eliminate any of the above ideas that seem overly promotional and client-centric; likewise, discard any media ideas that stray too far from the material provided to you.
The third column should contain ideas that you think work for both the client and media. If done correctly, and honestly, the final result should be the equivalent of your individual creative session, leaving you with a few solid ideas.
Despite what you might have been told, everyone at the meeting should be viewed as your competition.
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