‘The average man is a conformist, accepting miseries and disasters with the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain.’
Tim Ferriss, author of The 4-Hour Workweek
Too many of us follow the crowd. We stick to the rules. We conform.
Yet, we know that creativity makes the difference between a mediocre business and a great one. The difference between success and failure.
A culture of creativity at home and work encourages better problem solving, more innovation, greater happiness and competitive advantage.
‘Creativity is the crucial variable in the process of turning knowledge into value.’
John Kao (Harvard Business School)
Most of us work in highly competitive markets and there’s too much focus on price competition. The less developed world is catching up and it’s taking our jobs. We have to innovate to survive, thrive and stay ahead.
We’re exposed to more than 2,500 adverts a day. But, can you remember any from yesterday?
Most of us become immune to advertising messages because most don’t engage, inspire or interest us. This is why creativity is so important in your marketing.
How and in what channels you deliver your message is as important as the message itself, if you want to persuade and achieve cut-through.
A powerful creative idea makes your communications stand out and significantly increases response rates. It won’t just generate more business, it will save you money, increasing your return on investment and make your marketing budget, no matter how small, have the impact of a much bigger one.
You must work with the hearts and minds of your customers. Emotions drive rational behaviour. Rational communication isn’t enough.
What’s your brand story? Put it at the heart of your marketing.
Think in the morning. Act in the noon. Eat in the evening. Sleep in the night.
William Blake, Poet
Some of us don’t see ourselves as creative, but it’s a skill that can often be learnt. It may simply be down to the rules you’re forced to work with or self-perception. Creative people see themselves as creative and give themselves the freedom to create. Uncreative people don’t.
Creativity is about listening, looking and reading a lot on a particular subject to find that germ of an idea that inspires you to act and change. Creativity needs to be fed with information and learning. Absorb, grow and be inspired.
Learn to harness the power of your right brain. Generate seed ideas. Leave them in your head for your right brain to process. How often have you gone to sleep with a problem and woken with the solution?
Bounce your ideas off colleagues. Escape to the hills. Go for long walks with friends. Create space. I often come back from a long weekend or a holiday full of new ideas.
Stress and fear are the enemies of creativity and innovation. Taking breaks is healthy; holidays free-up the mind; unnecessary routines, like the 9 to 5 straight jacket, breed mediocrity; excessive red tape and bullying behaviour box us in. Change the rules. Banish the blame culture. Give your staff space and flexibility. Encourage initiative and collaboration.
One of the best sources of creativity is ‘mind-chatter’ that comes into your head when you’re doing something else.
Creativity is about surprise. It’s about thinking beyond the rules and not being constrained by boundaries.
One crazy idea can lead on to something amazing. So, keep your mind open.
However, you don’t have to come up with the next big thing. A lot of product development is based on iterative steps, small improvements to existing products or services.
Start by doing some personal brainstorming. Contrary to popular opinion, many of the best ideas come from brainstorming on your own. Only then run a group brainstorming session. You could consider using Edward de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats technique, which encourages everyone to think in the same direction at the same time.
However, don’t just generate ideas. Execute your best ideas to test them out. Often it’s action that really forces you to be innovative. In the end, it’s all about taking action.
Don’t just apply creative thinking to your products or marketing communications. Apply creative thinking to all areas of your marketing, right across the marketing mix: to your products, pricing, distribution, communications, processes, people, positioning and budgets.
Change in the environment is constant and businesses need to innovate to thrive and succeed. What are your competitors up to? What are the trends affecting your industry?
Some people say ‘follow your gut’ but that can be wrong. Next time you’re presented with a creative idea don’t make a quick decision because gut instincts can mislead. Sleep on it.
Exact numbers aren’t needed to realize that we spend too much time with those who poison us with pessimism, sloth, and low expectations of themselves and the world. It is often the case that you have to fire certain friends or retire from particular social circles to have the life you want…
Western thinking is too full of criticism. Our cultures and schools breed analysis and negativity. Good ideas hate environments where there’s criticism, narrow-mindedness or personal attacks.
Courtesy of Christopher Lamotte at Real Marketing Specialists.
It started with BetaMax and VHS. Remember them? Fancy machine with a black cassette that you carefully marked with a black marker to make sure no one recorded over your recording. And now we video on our phones and upload to websites. No video rental stores here.
Collaboration - the action of working with someone to produce something.
cooperation • alliance • partnership • participation • combination • association • concert • teamwork • joint effort • working together
There’s new ‘c’ word this season… Collaboration. From fashion to medicine, customers are realising collaboration is the way forward.
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Launching a website is always an exciting time. You’ve put in all the hard work – now you get to show it off to the world and start receiving visitors.
However, it can also be a stressful time. How do you know that you haven’t forgotten something important?
With over twenty years in the jewellery business, Clare Blatherwick is one of the most experienced jewellery professionals in Scotland. Before launching her business in 2017, Clare spent 10 years as Head of Jewellery in Scotland for Bonhams, one of the world’s largest auctioneers.
Video production has often been perceived as an expensive marketing communication. However, video content can be created in your living room (and may well be until we get back into office life!). Think about YouTube and podcasting – these are easily created and uploaded.
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A year is a long time in politics apparently. But it’s also a long time in terms of websites.
If your website is anything over one year old, then it definitely needs refreshed. If it’s over 2-3 years old, it may well need revamped entirely.
Who remembers Google's logo before 2015? Really? Animation was starting to creep into marketing and in 2015 Google introduced its new animated logo marking the beginning of a shift change in online branding. Since then, there has been a steady increase in the use of animation.
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18! That means we’re grown-ups now right? We like to think of it more that we started out as a fledgling business and we have matured and evolved over the last 18 years. It’s been a great journey so far – in fact, we still have our first client that came on board 18 years ago.
Well this has been an interesting / challenging / what just happened (delete as appropriate!) few months…
But we are seeing a glimmer of light of what we think is the new normal.
Hands up who’s heard of Albert Mehrabian? To be honest, neither had we until we started looking into various types of communication.
Content is king we are always told. Luther Vandross would tell you there’s ‘Never too much’… although maybe he wasn’t actually talking about content.
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Don’t panic, we’re not channelling ABBA. Well, not today anyway.
We were recently approached by a new client, looking to change their company name. Ooh that’s a bit risky we hear you gasp. Well yes. And no.
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You’ll know by now that Team PC love a stat – and the bigger the numbers the better. So here goes…
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All we’re hearing today is about blue Monday and how it’s the most depressing day of the year. Pah!
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Anton Chekhov must have known a thing or two about knowledge graph panels. Or maybe the 19th century was a bit early…
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You may have noticed in our last insights article that we shared our love of print. We’ve spent years understanding the process of print and learning more about finishes and stocks. But, for the uninitiated, it can be daunting to try and work out what print will work best for your project.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that print is a dying industry.
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It’s been over 40 years since the first email was sent. No one could have predicted the effect this would have on the way we work. Email marketing exploded in the mid-nineties and it remains one of the most effective ways to engage with, and generate revenue from your customers...
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Here at Platinum HQ there’s a lot of things we love. Cake, a cold beer on a sunny day, more cake.
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We were approached by The University of Edinburgh to design and produce a series of wall graphics to display within the newly refurbished Estates & Buildings department and the end results were very impressive.
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Design isn’t just about your logo or how you decorate your office, it’s a way of thinking and allowing your business to thrive, creating new products and developing relationships with new customers.