Words make me happy. Words can bring people together. Words often bring about change. Words are powerful and when documented can impact lives for decades.
So when it comes to changing the way you do business, or solving a problem that has your company stumped, I think words are often one of the most important tools in your arsenal.
As we continue to talk about idea generation and the impact it can make on your next challenge, I bring up one of my favorite brainstorming exercises. Check out idea empowerment tool #2.
2) Apply word associations to your problem-solving tactics.
This kind of brainstorming involves using multiple lists of words to discover uncommon links that creatively communicate or solve your current business objective.
Here’s an example:
You are a company that makes toothbrushes. Many of the dentists you sell to have made the comment that their patients aren’t practicing good dental hygiene. They tell you that they would buy more toothbrushes from you if the toothbrushes made their patients want to take better care of their health. Now, could invent such a toothbrush?
Wow sounds like a tall order and a great opportunity! By using word association brainstorming, you can tackle this challenge head on, it works like this.
- Survey the problem at hand or tackle an idea your company is trying to promote (i.e. creating a new line of toothbrushes that help encourage better dental hygiene)
- Begin with a word that focuses on your challenge (i.e. Tooth, Brush, Hygiene) (see photo)
- Circle the phrase or multiple phrases that work to solve your challenge (i.e. Floss Daily, Make Convenient, How Long to Brush?, Time Yourself) (see photo)
- Join your words together and discover the power of word association brainstorming (i.e. Create a toothbrush that has a build-in dental floss dispenser and a timer to ensure a patient brushes their teeth long enough to remove build-up)
This not only works with inventing new product and service lines for your business, it’s also a great starting point for your marketing efforts. Take a look at the words you use to describe your situation. There’s probably a tagline, product name and a simple headline that you can create just from this exercise. Try it out. See what you think and let me know how it goes!
Sarah @ Dog-Eared Pages