The Sweet Spot Where Creativity & Strategy Meet
Communications professionals are increasingly required to be creative and strategic. In the past, these were often considered very different disciplines. Not so much anymore. The ever-increasing speed in which work and the world at large churn and change demands that communications professionals be both creative and strategic. After all, it’s where strategy and creativity meet that the truly big ideas are found. It’s the big ideas that advance brands. And make careers.
Steve Kissing, partner and creative director at Wordsworth Communications in Cincinnati, Ohio, says communications pros should strive to develop clever ideas, which he defines are those that are both creative and strategic. “A creative idea that garners a lot of attention but isn’t strategic — meaning ‘on message’ — is wasted time and money. On the other hand, a strategic idea that doesn’t have a creative element — meaning something that is different, fresh or unusual — won’t capture people’s attention.”
Knowing how to get to and exploit this “sweet spot” can help you positively impact the brands you serve, perhaps in a dramatic way. This is the focus of our new ebook, “Bringing Great Ideas to Life: How PR and Marketing Professionals Can Develop Creative Strategies.”
The ebook contains a host of insights to help you tap into and channel the communications magic that happens when your strategies are creative and your creative ideas are strategic. Here’s a sneak peek at some of the tips you’ll find in the ebook:
- Equip your team with as much data as is possible and reasonable. Good data is often seen as something necessary for strategic thinking, not so much for brainstorming. This is misleading. Data—hard numbers, trends, etc.—can inspire ideas, too, and help prevent them from coming unmoored from certain realities.
- Often, thinking “outside the box” leads to ideas that are wildly creative, but also wildly off strategy and not the least bit practical. Placing some guardrails on your ideas can actually enhance the chances of landing on a big idea that you can implement within your timeframe and budget.
- When you and your colleagues land on a big idea and applaud yourselves for doing so, challenge yourselves to think through how that idea can be translated into a series of actionable, smaller ideas and steps.
- Create a regular cadence for re-evaluating your strategy and looking for one thing to change about the existing plan. While strategies shouldn’t shift too frequently, of course, they should never be considered beyond review. The more precise and up-to-date your strategy, the greater likelihood of it leading to clever ideas.
21st century communications pros need to develop and maintain sharp strategic and creative thinking skills in order to conceive of and implement ideas that move brands forward in a meaningful way. The good news is that while this is often challenging work, it’s also quite stimulating and quite rewarding.
Again, you can download a copy of our ebook, “Bringing Great Ideas to Life: How PR and Marketing Professionals Can Develop Creative Strategies,” here.