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How To Generate Better Ideas

Article by Michael Merrick Crooks

I walked into the office of my Chiropractor/Acupuncturist and signed in. There on the desk were three pens. One looked like a syringe, another was a crooked pen and the third looked like a bone.

“What are these,” I asked, knowing full well they were pens.

“They’re pens,” the doctor replied. ” I’m trying to decide which one to promote my practice with. What do you think?

It took me a minute to respond. I was dismayed that someone was trying to sell him such clich ideas. Who ever this someone was, had little understanding of the good doctor or his practice. I was also a little irritated that he hadn’t called me in the first place.

“Let me guess,” I said, holding up the syringe pen. “Our patients love it when we needle them.”

“Yeah,” he blurted out in amazement.

I held up the crooked pen and said, “We’ll get you back on the straight and narrow.”

“Well, yeah,” he exclaimed.

I picked up the bone-shaped pen and said, “The imprint involves the phrase no bones about it.”

The doctor came to the sudden realization that the ideas he thought were so clever only moments before, were neither clever or original.

“You’re always talking about blood flow, energy flow and balance, that’s your message.” I said. “So when it comes to your promotional marketing, why is your message suddenly bones, needles and crookedness?”

I told him if he wanted ideas that supported his message and what he was really about, we’d have to look beyond the obvious.

Too often people stop at the first thing they think of when searching for creative ideas to promote their business, event or brand. And while the first thing they think of may indeed make sense, these ideas are usually clich

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