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What to Do When You’re Out of Ideas

Working in digital marketing means being a professional idea-haver. If someone asks us a question, especially if it relates to how to market their business and speak to their audience, we have to give them an answer (and a good one at that). Marketing businesses is what we do. To do it well involves a great deal of problem solving and creative thinking. 

But I’ll let you in on a secret: coming up with fresh ideas isn’t always easy. For anyone. Daily life, tight deadlines, pressure to perform and so many other distractions can get in the way of idea-having. Here’s what we recommend doing when you’re all out of ideas.

Try Something New

Getting inspired often means getting out of your current headspace and exploring something new. Listen to a song that’s popular with your friends or colleagues but not necessarily your thing. Watch a film someone else recommends that you didn’t already plan on watching. Try a new food, visit a new place. Ideas can come from all kinds of unexpected places. By leaving your comfort zone, you take yourself out of the no-ideas environment and out of your rut. 

Talk About It

Whether you find yourself in search of inspiration or a moment to vent, talking to someone always helps. Have a verbal conversation, one where you can hear out loud what you and the other person are saying. There’s always a chance you’ll talk yourself into an idea or that your conversation companion will have a few ideas to throw at you. Bounce ideas back and forth, and write down the best ones.

Clear Your Mind

Mental blockages often happen because your nervous system is either overwhelmed or fatigued. Taking time out of your day for a mindfulness practice can help your mind rest and recuperate. Even pausing to take five deep breaths can help reset your mind and nervous system. If that doesn’t happen at your office desk or on a yoga mat, take a walk outside. Leave your headphones, cellphone and any other distractions indoors. Observe your surroundings while out on your walk, and return to idea-having when you return to your desk. 

See What Others Are Doing

When the well of ideas has run dry, it may be time to look to others for inspiration. Try reading up on your competitors or looking into your company’s past. Maybe something your company has done can be recycled into something fresh and new. Think outside the box, and look at what some of your favorite brands are doing. We’re not saying to steal anyone else’s ideas, but observing other ideas can help get you thinking and get you back on track. There are plenty of places to draw inspiration from when it doesn’t flow from within. 

Still out of ideas? Don’t worry — we’re full of them! Call On Target at (407) 830-4550 or reach out via our contact form to see what ideas we have to help you grow and nurture your business.