Bring creative vision to life: Shifting from inspiration to innovation
- Posted on February 8, 2021
- Estimated reading time 2 minutes
Moving from inspiration to innovation isn't easy. How do you think differently to challenge the status quo? Innovation in creativity or design is not like most other business functions and activities. There are few blueprints, rules, processes or even reliable measures of success. We live in an increasingly visual world, and our audience expects to see differences among companies to help them quickly choose whom to engage with. It's essential to reduce confusion, stand out and boldly claim your own identity. That's what we tried to do with the Rethink campaign, and it worked.
You still need to pay attention to popular trends. Emulating the ideas of others is sometimes an underappreciated learning tool that astute creatives tap into. There is nothing wrong with being inspired by someone else's creative, but there is a fine line between imitation and inspiration. The primary difference between inspiration and imitation is intent. Be conscious of what's been done in the past, what's happening in the market and the story you're choosing to tell.
Realistically, everything we do is inspired by something – there is no such thing as a genuinely original idea. But make sure you do it respectfully. There will always be debate about where an idea originates from, but the key is to connect things differently and own your story.
Other things to consider when trying to turn your inspiration into something innovative:
- Create open channels for feedback. Inspirational ideas often come from stakeholders, so listen to customers, partners, employees. They might provide the spark you need.
- Keep an eye on emerging visual trends. Consider how they might make an impact. You don't have to adhere to them, but you can use them to guide your ideation and define how you differentiate.
- Rethink your campaign. Excuse the pun considering the name of our campaign. Don't assume that the competitive advantage you have today will last. Someone can always do better.
- Seek out companies that aren't on your radar. They may be analyzing the mistakes of others, analyzing customer needs and planning to develop better campaigns.
- Ask what if? Take risks, abandon the fear of failure and make the connection between things in new ways.
Creativity is never a straight line
The pandemic is still with us, and we're in a new reality with bigger surges, additional lockdowns and the hope that comes with the new vaccines rolling out. Inspiration may be hard to find, so look to the children in your life — many schooling from home these days. They are the best innovators. They solve problems in a non-linear fashion — their imaginations unabashedly collecting, sorting and rearranging their dreams. Unlock yourself from linear thinking and stop denying yourself the freedom of unbridled imagination. No one has ownership over creativity, inspiration or innovation.
As we evolve our Rethink campaign and focus on our clients' pragmatic challenges and solutions, we'll carefully consider the creative direction. Only by taking new risks and implementing new inspirational ideas will we continue to innovate and make waves.
Click over and read my complementary blog post, "Visual strategy in marketing: Finding inspiration during uncertainty."