Posts tagged #ideation

Blog Idea Cheatsheet #FLBlogCon

Do you ever wish you could give a client a sheet of ideas for their blog? That way they don’t hound you when they can’t come up with anything else to say. Well here’s my gift to you.



  • 10-Ten lists

  • Questions you get everyday

  • Inspirational Stories from your Industry

  • Problem solving

  • Product reviews

  • Tutorials and how-to Guides

  • Step-by-step guides to _____

  • Latest news within your vertical

  • Checklist(s): Do you have all that you need to ____?

  • Infographics

  • Case Studies

  • Industry profiles/spotlight/profiles

  • Today in your Industry

  • Comparisons (styles, gear, situational)

  • Share what others are saying

  • “Behind the Curtain” (let people know what you're working on)

  • Surveys and polls

  • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • Questions you should be asking your Industry

  • Time-saving posts (how to)

  • Event summaries

  • Top take-aAways from _______

  • Rants from your Industry

  • Beginner’s guides to _______

  • Recent tools you used

  • Free giveaways (DVDs, Books, Gear, etc.)

  • Myth vs. Fact within your Industry

  • Presentations (post and cite takeaways)

  • Answer “Why?”

  • Cheatsheets for your Industry

  • Share recent travel experiences

  • Share recent seminars

  • Gallery / album posts

  • Spotlight successes in your Industry

  • Spotlight Failures in your Industry

  • Summarize someone else’s _____

  • Thankful posts

  • Interesting customer question

  • Create a glossary

  • Who is Important to follow in your Industry

  • Sources of inspiration

  • X# Secrets you didn’t know about ____

  • What ____ doesn’t want you to kKnow

  • X# Lies you’ve been told about ____

  • History of ______

  • Beginner’s guide to ____

  • Intermediate guide to ____

  • Expert’s guide to ____

  • Videos about ____ you have to watch

  • Podcasts in your Industry

  • You should be listening to

  • Recent podcast takeaways

  • Blogs in your Industry

  • You should to be reading

  • Recent blog takeaways

  • Reasons your ____ isn’t working

  • DYK (Did you know?)

  • ICYMI (In case you missed it)

  • One thing you’ve been missing

  • Best advice you can give

  • Best advice you’ve ever received

  • What these X experts have to say about ____

  • ____ 101: All the basics you need to know

  • Worst advice you can hear

  • What will ____ be like in X years

  • What ____ has taught me about our industry

  • Apps for your Industry

  • Quotes, and what they mean to you

  • Common misconceptions about ____

  • Gear for your Industry

  • Predictions about the future (great for end of year content)

  • Best books for your Industry

  • Best movies for your Industry

  • How to troubleshoot ____

  • Resources for your Industry

  • Thoughts from newbies

  • What to do when the SHTF

  • Special reports

  • Quick tips about ____

  • Crash course in ______

  • Quizzes

  • Fast facts about ____

  • A buyer’s guide for ____

  • Why ____ is overrated

  • Alternatives for ____

  • Considerations before you purchase ____

  • What these people did wrong in ____

  • How much do you really know about ____

  • The history of ____

  • Habits of successful ____

  • A practical guide to ____

  • Frugal guide to ____

  • How to ____ the right way

  • Ways to research ____

  • Signs you’re wasting your time in ____

  • Alerts/recalls

  • Open questions to your readers (debate/thought starters)

  • Memes

  • Key benefits of ____

  • Pros and cons of ____

  • Which Is better: ____ or ____

  • Ways to motivate yourself for ____

  • Strategies you to considered

  • Fundamentals about ____

  • The magic formula for ____ is ____

  • Creative ways to ____

  • How ____ can be more efficient

  • Perfect examples of ____ in action

  • Foolproof tactics for ____ is ____

  • Strategies to supercharge your ____

  • Ways you’re sabotaging your ____ without knowing it

  • A grassroots approach to ____ is ____

  • Historical news posts

  • Things to do before you ____

  • Harsh realities about ____

  • Intern checklist

  • A ____ cheatsheet

  • Surprising lessons we learned from ____

  • What’s the best way to ____

  • A timeline on ____

  • Statistics on ____ you need to know

  • What do you want to read about next

  • Ways to recover from ____

  • Are you ready for ____? Here’s how to tell.

  • “What if” posts

  • SAQ (Should Ask Questions) posts

  • Awareness posts

  • Recycle old posts (create v2. and update old posts)

  • If I only new ____ now, I would have done ____ then

  • X# tips for your new hire

  • How to stay current in ____

  • Ways your industry is expanding (or consolidating)

  • Comparisons of _____ and _____

  • Interviewing checklist

  • Interviewer checklist

  • Customer relationships 101

  • Why ____ is so important we almost always forget it

  • Flight check

  • Why ____ was the best article I’ve ever read

  • Why ____ was the best presentation I’ve seen

  • Constructive criticism: (multi-part)

    • How to give it

    • How to apply it

    • How to measure it’s success

  • How to come up with new ideas in your industry

  • Setting goals in your industry

  • I want to know more about ____

  • What is the latest trend in ____

  • ____ is the most interesting thing about ____

  • Tell your best story

  • Have you ever wished

  • Readers be cautious of ____

  • Photo/video of your office, products, or workers

  • What is trending on Twitter

  • Your favorite resources are ____

  • What are your day’s activities

  • What makes you mad

  • What gets me excited

  • My favorite life-hacks are ____

  • What makes me worry

  • I am scared I’ll fail at

  • My favorite technology is ____

  • Myths about your industry

  • Transcribe your podcasts

  • What is your favorite charity? Why?

  • X# of facts about ____

  • Customer testimonials

  • Inspirational posts

Posted on September 24, 2018 and filed under Blogging, Brand, Business, Content.

Idea Alchemy - Recipes For Success

First and foremost is that today’s youth aren’t as hardwired as I expected to pursue and adapt the latest technology. I was surprised to see that fewer kids than I anticipated were attached to a social channel. Facebook was the primary platform of choice for social communication, and a few students selected personalized channels such as Instagram or Pinterest. Additionally, I was surprised that more kids were not putting their arms around these channels to get a foot in the door for their upcoming career.
Posted on January 16, 2013 and filed under Design, Process, Strategy.

Designers Block & The Art Of The Whine

I've been designing steadily for over 20 years. In that time I've on more than one occasion fallen stumped to not knowing where to go with my designs. Be it a logo, storyboard, website, print piece or integrated concept we all fall short of knowing that the concept/visual is just not there.

Author James Webb Young wrote a little bible called "A Technique for Producing Ideas" (this is a must have for your library) and in this the fundamental principles of this 64 pages are:

  1. Aggregate as many mental ideas, thoughts, and related concepts as possible.
  2. Then collect as much specific information on the relevant client, topic or campaign. Now matter how unrelated try to put ideas together, mind-map and see where thing fit and where they don't.
  3. Then stuff more general thinking around it; like case studies, competitors and simply "smart thinking" within the landscape.
  4. The most important part of this process is 'the incubation phase' – Go to a movie, take a long lunch, let it simmer over a weekend, and or, work on an unrelated project that won't effect your brain putting process time against that ideation. Let the subconsciousmind work on the problem.
  5. Then the magic of the "Eureka" moment! The idea(s) come to you in whatever way they manifest.
  6. Reprioritize with your idea collective and work the idea to perfection. Test, refine and launch!

Well sure this sounds great but in a the dog-eat-dog pits of today's advertising/interactive agencies do you really have the time for this whole process? Maybe and maybe not dependant upon the insurmountable deadlines you may be facing at any given time.

You'll also here your creative staff give you a thousand reasons why they're stumped, why they need more time and why are you doing this to them! But fortunately we live in a time with technology that we can take Mr. Young's principle and condense it down to assist your squeaky wheels.

  1. First of the Mr. Webb's point of aggregation and collection are still flawless and essential. Whether it's a client fact-finding mission, or you simply look at the works that's been done to date. You must immerse yourself in your client.
  2. With the internet you can make some pretty educated assumptions with websites, case-studies and online tools that lead to the analysis of where your client needs to be. Weigh the work of your competition. What works? What doesn't? What techniques are they using? Social Media? Mobile Apps? UGC campaigns? Or have they choosen more traiditional drivers?
  3. Then get inspired! There's a link on my home page for my Delicious Links, their you can find links to thousands of designers, agencies and great thinking that you can pull from. A world of great ideas is nothing but a search term away. Look at your clients competitors agency as well and make sure you don't replicate old thinking.
  4. The "incubation" phase is what I find I have very little time for anymore. My staff and I do our best to initially design rough directions and try to give immediate feedback. Then (give that you have a few hours or a few days) readdress it showing everyone's refined collective thinking. This is were Mr. Young may not have had a room full of creative minds to pull from.
  5. Then no differently – Reprioritize with your ideas collectively and work the concept to perfection. Test, refine and launch!

Lastly, I find it increasingly important to up the ante on the speed of ideas. You have to keep yourself and your staff immersed while at work at all times. Concept 'morgues' on your servers, large libraries of design, photography and advertising periodicals. Giant white boards should be no further than an arms reach while you talk about the latest mobile application in the break room during a Wii contest. Industry and conceptual immersion must be constant. This way the subconscious works faster to process the myriad of ideas that are sadly backed by ever-shortening deadline.

Posted on March 4, 2010 and filed under DIY, Design, Process.