I am writing this post in a cafe – it’s a place where I do much of my creative thinking.
There is a sign in the window, which offers half-price pasta meals on Tuesday. As I drive to my next meeting I see a sign offering cut-price golf fees on Monday and Tuesday. I am also tempted to go to the movies on Tuesdays at my local cinema because you receive a 40% discount.
See the pattern?
It’s not just about offering special offers on Monday or Tuesday. The real lesson is that each of these leaders in these organisations are trying to proactively stimulate new business in their low volume times.
Also notice that three different industries (golf – leisure, entertainment – cinema, and hospitality – cafe) are using a similar type of idea. This makes perfect sense. Consumers get it. Because most ideas are derivative – they build on the ideas of others.
Being creative is often just about transferring an idea that works in one context to another. It is rarely creating an idea that is completely new to the world.
My point is this – ideas are everywhere.
You just have to open up your mind and see what is working in other categories and industries (the unrelated the better) and work on applying them to your situation. Using this approach means that you will never get stuck again.
So the next time you go to a restaurant, hotel, bank, shop or gym etc, proactively search for ideas. See what’s working and what is not. Now borrow, adapt or learn. You will delight your customers and stay ahead of your competitors.