Brainstorming is a critical part of any creative process, whether you are writing copy or creating your next big product. Once defined as simply a collaboration of ideas, the term has since transformed into any visionary or inventive planning done independently and in groups.
To come up with creatively written solutions to your B2B marketing dilemmas, you do not need to be an expert copywriter or consider yourself an advanced writer at all. One way to develop your ideas is to explore various, basic techniques of brainstorming.
Take a Second
In all instances, especially in times of crisis such as the current COVID pandemic, it is important to take a deep breath and pause. With the uncertainties happening around us, it is necessary to be present and focus on each day and the tasks at hand. Before making an important decision, writing new content or trying to create something new, like a product, take a second to consider your options and fully develop your ideas. This is crucial in the overall decision making and thought process. Collect your information and prepare to immerse yourself in brainstorming.
Prepare Rough Ideas
Even though the majority of your brainstorming may happen in a group setting, it is still important for you to come to the group with your own thoughts and ideas. To prepare your initial ideas, jot down any idea that comes to mind. The goal is not to come up with a fully developed idea right from the start, but it will allow you to build toward something. These ideas are your own and free from group influence, which can sometimes be a factor in idea creation. Look at your preliminary ideas and you will have a better understanding of what works and does not work before you attempt the group brainstorm. Not only is it important for you to prepare, but it is every group member’s responsibility to do the same. With contributions from the full group, it can be an avenue for you and your team to create even more ideas.
Get Others Involved
Brainstorming sessions focused on business writing do not have to be exclusive to copywriters. They should involve anyone who can provide valuable input, such as graphic designers. Chances are that your copy will need graphical representation to tie it all together. Sales and other team members might be useful as well and offer their unique perspectives. Listening to different ideas and getting a variety of input can help bring out the best in your writing.
Pose an Initial Question
Suppose you created a product for small to medium-sized businesses and were looking for a new way to approach marketing the product. You can start a brainstorming session by posing a single question such as “What are small to medium-sized business owners looking for?” Participants would throw out ideas such as “to increase sales” or “to save time and money.” Another option would be to select a specific feature of your new product and pose a question about it. “How does this specific feature help small to medium-sized business owners?” The idea is to get the conversation started so that you can outline ideas or recognize common themes. Be sure your initial questions are appropriate for the industry landscape, current societal standpoint and more. They should be addressing the current problems buyers are facing. If your questions are not on track to begin with, it may steer you in the wrong direction in your writing and product development.
Use Your Senses
When you discuss a product or a service in your copy, you are not just trying to highlight information, you are trying to invoke an emotional response. One of the most effective ways to do this is to use sensory imagery in your copywriting. We all know that our “Product X” is the most powerful product of its kind but how does it feel? Can you hear it, and if so, what does it sound like? Make a list of all the sensory aspects of your product or service and search for words or phrases that produce an emotional response.
As the writer, it is important for you to use empathy in your messaging and voice. Identifying what buyers or customers are currently feeling will help guide your content. Especially during times of crisis, being empathetic can be reassuring to your audience and something they are able to relate to more easily.
Save Rejected Ideas
You have gone through the brainstorming process and have picked the one idea to develop further that will solve your specific business need. Now that you have the one idea you will continue with, there are many more ideas and concepts that go unused. Make sure to save these unused ideas. They might be useful later for a project or client, or they might serve as a basis for inspiration. At the beginning of a new brainstorming session, consider pulling out the list of rejected ideas and choose a couple of them to get the ball rolling. This could be especially helpful if you are having a difficult time getting the brainstorm session started with new ideas.
These are just some examples of the different brainstorming techniques that can be applied to help generate creative business writing and messaging ideas. The end goal is to help you and your team create inventive copy that attracts buyers to your business. How you get there is completely up to you, but utilizing these techniques and finding what works best for your B2B organization can be a great starting point