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Learning To Love Ideas: Brainstorming 101
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Learning To Love Ideas: Brainstorming 101

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A session on brainstorming for the Front End Design Conference 2010.

A session on brainstorming for the Front End Design Conference 2010.

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  • Why is Brainstorming Important? - We need to make ideas stand out. The web is getting saturated… And creativity is a choice.- It’s not just about the design or the code - it’s about stepping back and looking at the big picture.
  • The digital industry tends to underplay the emotions, symbology and story behind thingsWe are way focused on innovation, design and usabilityWhich are quite important... but I feel like there is a place for the other part tooTraditional always focused on the story because they had a storytelling mediumWe have an interactive one - That is often quite utility based.But I suspect the middle ground is social because it's our job to applications that can allow people to share their own stories
  • The digital industry tends to underplay the emotions, symbology and story behind thingsWe are way focused on innovation, design and usabilityWhich are quite important... but I feel like there is a place for the other part tooTraditional always focused on the story because they had a storytelling mediumWe have an interactive one - That is often quite utility based.But I suspect the middle ground is social because it's our job to applications that can allow people to share their own stories
  • The digital industry tends to underplay the emotions, symbology and story behind thingsWe are way focused on innovation, design and usabilityWhich are quite important... but I feel like there is a place for the other part tooTraditional always focused on the story because they had a storytelling mediumWe have an interactive one - That is often quite utility based.But I suspect the middle ground is social because it's our job to applications that can allow people to share their own stories
  • Target towards women to buy for their men.
  • Ran inPlayBoy
  • Jaime Pressly
  • Years ago, during Old Spice's heyday, the brand was more Sean Connery than Jim Carrey. The brand's messaging was sincere, moody and engaging.Isaiah Mustafa (born February 11, 1974)[1] is an American actor[2] and former wide receiver for the NFL[3][4] signed as a rookie with the Seattle Seahawks in 2000 and NFL Europe.[5]
  • Years ago, during Old Spice's heyday, the brand was more Sean Connery than Jim Carrey. The brand's messaging was sincere, moody and engaging
  • Years ago, during Old Spice's heyday, the brand was more Sean Connery than Jim Carrey. The brand's messaging was sincere, moody and engaging
  • Agency Wieden+Kennedy
  • The digital industry tends to underplay the emotions, symbology and story behind thingsWe are way focused on innovation, design and usabilityWhich are quite important... but I feel like there is a place for the other part tooTraditional always focused on the story because they had a storytelling mediumWe have an interactive one - That is often quite utility based.But I suspect the middle ground is social because it's our job to applications that can allow people to share their own stories
  • Where do you Begin?Isis Better to Brainstorm Alone or in Groups?What’s a good Process?What are some good techniques?
  • First: DEFINE THE PROBLEM. Turn Problems into solutions.One of the Mistakes is that you start off being too Generalized. Or not having a clear directions. Create a really cool toothbrush holder, not create a really awesome bathroom accessory. Be Specific. Constraints are good. They give you something to measure against.WARNING: Don’t focus on technique yet
  • First: DEFINE THE PROBLEM. Turn Problems into solutions.One of the Mistakes is that you start off being too Generalized. Or not having a clear directions. Create a really cool toothbrush holder, not create a really awesome bathroom accessory. Be Specific. Constraints are good. They give you something to measure against.WARNING: Don’t focus on technique yet
  • First: DEFINE THE PROBLEM. Turn Problems into solutions.One of the Mistakes is that you start off being too Generalized. Or not having a clear directions. Create a really cool toothbrush holder, not create a really awesome bathroom accessory. Be Specific. Constraints are good. They give you something to measure against.WARNING: Don’t focus on technique yet
  • Where do you Begin?Isis Better to Brainstorm Alone or in Groups?What’s a good Process?What are some good techniques?
  • Q: By Show of Hands:HOW MANY HERE ARE FREELANCERS? WORK FOR A COMPANY?
  • Individual - More ideas & wider range. Less Distractions. Groups - Bad group behavior creeps in such as distractions or staying on track.
  • Individual - Working in a Bubble. No one to expand on your ideas.Groups - Groups bring more experience and insight that just one person.
  • Individual - Anywhere, anytimeGroups – No one likes long meetings
  • Individual - You might find an idea you’d be hesitant to bring up in group setting. No egos.Groups - Criticism & egos get in the way. Not everyone participates in conflict.
  • Individual – You don’t have to wait for others to stop talking to contribute. Groups - Other people’s ideas get so much attention that they're not generating ideas of their own – or they're forgetting ideas while they wait for their turn to speak.
  • Q HOW MANY HERE ARE FREELANCERS? WORK FOR A COMPANY?Pros of individualwhen individuals brainstorm on their own, they come up with more ideas (and often better quality ideas) -When you brainstorm on your own, you'll tend to produce a wider range of ideas than with group brainstorming – you do not have to worry about other people's egos or opinions-you might find that an idea you’d be hesitant to bring up in a group session develops into something quite special when you explore it with individual brainstorming. Nor do you have to wait for others to stop speaking before you contribute your own ideas.Pros of Groupsoften more effective at generating ideas than normal group problem-solving, - Too many people make it difficult. Keep groups to 5 or 6they - Don’t go longer than 30-40 minutes. No one likes long meetings.Cons of Individual You are working in a bubble thus ideas may not develop as fully No one is there to expand on your ideas-Cons of groupsToo much criticism-in groups, people aren’t always strict in following the rules of brainstorming, and bad group behaviors creep in Not everyone participates in conflict Sometimes, It’s hard to stay on track- Some people get shy- Ideas get blocked as someone is trying to think of what to say next-so much attention to other people’s ideas that they're not generating ideas of their own – or they're forgetting these ideas while they wait for their turn to speak. Sometimes its good to start alone and then share it with a group.
  • First: DEFINE THE PROBLEM. Turn Problems into solutions.One of the Mistakes is that you start off being too Generalized. Or not having a clear directions. Create a really cool toothbrush holder, not create a really awesome bathroom accessory. Be Specific. Constraints are good. They give you something to measure against.WARNING: Don’t focus on technique yet
  • SOLO:It’s easy to sketch a comp or wireframe instead of just writing it. Don’t hold back.
  • 1. Set a time limit. No one likes long meetings. 30-40 minutes.2. Keep groups small - 5 or 6.3. Stay on track4. Give everyone a chance5. Don’t criticize any ideas (yet)
  • First Set up the correct environment. Reduce distractions… or perhaps change your environment. Tall ceilingsThink of all Ideas you can… (make lists of extremes / don’t hold back)Don’t Critize or Question and Idea – see where it goesMake a List of everything you can think of.NOW WALK AWAY and take a break.
  • Walt Disney was famous for this… He had separate Rooms.
  • First Set up the correct environment. Reduce distractions… or perhaps change your environment. Tall ceilingsThink of all Ideas you can… (make lists of extremes / don’t hold back)Don’t Critize or Question and Idea – see where it goesMake a List of everything you can think of.NOW WALK AWAY and take a break.
  • Low Cielings. Hunker Down.Review , refine and clarify your ideas… Combine like ideas
  • Get your idea-killer around… get feedback and see what others think. Get your ideas out there. Yahoo Answers? Answes.com ?Too many ideas can be bad. Widdle it down so that you don’t have too many. Choose the best. (Now you are ready to present)
  • First Set up the correct environment. Reduce distractions… or perhaps change your environment. Tall ceilingsThink of all Ideas you can… (make lists of extremes / don’t hold back)Don’t Critize or Question and Idea – see where it goesMake a List of everything you can think of.NOW WALK AWAY and take a break.
  • Check it out!
  • Check it out!
  • Pass the Paper IDEA: Charmin is coming out with a new type of toilet paper that you can X…. Come up with a website, viral execution or web campaign that can promote this new product.Create 4 Squares – (30 seconds to write your idea)Present a Problem (Web Based)Pros of individualwhen individuals brainstorm on their own, they come up with more ideas (and often better quality ideas) -When you brainstorm on your own, you'll tend to produce a wider range of ideas than with group brainstorming – you do not have to worry about other people's egos or opinions-you might find that an idea you’d be hesitant to bring up in a group session develops into something quite special when you explore it with individual brainstorming. Nor do you have to wait for others to stop speaking before you contribute your own ideas.Pros of Groupsoften more effective at generating ideas than normal group problem-solving, - Too many people make it difficult. Keep groups to 5 or 6they - Don’t go longer than 30-40 minutes. No one likes long meetings.Cons of Individual You are working in a bubble thus ideas may not develop as fully No one is there to expand on your ideas-Cons of groupsToo much criticism-in groups, people aren’t always strict in following the rules of brainstorming, and bad group behaviors creep in Not everyone participates in conflict Sometimes, It’s hard to stay on track- Some people get shy- Ideas get blocked as someone is trying to think of what to say next-so much attention to other people’s ideas that they're not generating ideas of their own – or they're forgetting these ideas while they wait for their turn to speak. Sometimes its good to start alone and then share it with a group.In the top left write the most extreme thing you can think of to solve this problem… doesn’t matter if its feasible or not. REALLY DREAM BIG. Don’t hold backPass it to your right – now in the top right, refine the first idea just a little. Pass to your right – now refine the idea in the top right just a little morePass to your Right – in the lower right refine that idea to something practical and feasible.What we learn is that we should start big and refine.
  • Pass the Paper IDEA: Charmin is coming out with a new type of toilet paper that you can X…. Come up with a website, viral execution or web campaign that can promote this new product.Create 4 Squares – (30 seconds to write your idea)Present a Problem (Web Based)In the top left write the most extreme thing you can think of to solve this problem… doesn’t matter if its feasible or not. REALLY DREAM BIG. Don’t hold backPass it to your right – now in the top right, refine the first idea just a little. Pass to your right – now refine the idea in the top right just a little morePass to your Right – in the lower right refine that idea to something practical and feasible.What we learn is that we should start big and refine.
  • Pass the Paper IDEA: Charmin is coming out with a new type of toilet paper that you can X…. Come up with a website, viral execution or web campaign that can promote this new product.Create 4 Squares – (30 seconds to write your idea)Present a Problem (Web Based)Pros of individualwhen individuals brainstorm on their own, they come up with more ideas (and often better quality ideas) -When you brainstorm on your own, you'll tend to produce a wider range of ideas than with group brainstorming – you do not have to worry about other people's egos or opinions-you might find that an idea you’d be hesitant to bring up in a group session develops into something quite special when you explore it with individual brainstorming. Nor do you have to wait for others to stop speaking before you contribute your own ideas.Pros of Groupsoften more effective at generating ideas than normal group problem-solving, - Too many people make it difficult. Keep groups to 5 or 6they - Don’t go longer than 30-40 minutes. No one likes long meetings.Cons of Individual You are working in a bubble thus ideas may not develop as fully No one is there to expand on your ideas-Cons of groupsToo much criticism-in groups, people aren’t always strict in following the rules of brainstorming, and bad group behaviors creep in Not everyone participates in conflict Sometimes, It’s hard to stay on track- Some people get shy- Ideas get blocked as someone is trying to think of what to say next-so much attention to other people’s ideas that they're not generating ideas of their own – or they're forgetting these ideas while they wait for their turn to speak. Sometimes its good to start alone and then share it with a group.In the top left write the most extreme thing you can think of to solve this problem… doesn’t matter if its feasible or not. REALLY DREAM BIG. Don’t hold backPass it to your right – now in the top right, refine the first idea just a little. Pass to your right – now refine the idea in the top right just a little morePass to your Right – in the lower right refine that idea to something practical and feasible.What we learn is that we should start big and refine.
  • Check it out!
  • Check it out!
  • Check it out!
  • MIND MAPPINGThe lines should be connected, starting from the central image Use images and symbols, throughout your Mind Map Use upper case letters for emphasis Each word/image is best alone and sitting on its own line The central lines become thinner as they radiate out Use colors to group
  • Check it out!
  • Check it out!
  • is a way of trying to segment your thinking process into parts. I definitely use it quite a bit. (Though not in the strictest sense of the word.) You take 4-5 adjectives or characteristics and then brainstorm in that direction.Generally, when I have an idea I start with a sense of scale. Let’s say Procter & Gamble has a new toilet paper. If I’m trying to generate ideas around it, the first thing I’d do is take a general imagination run into scale. What happens if you have no toilet paper? What happens if you have way, way too much toilet paper? What’s the smallest type of toilet paper that you would ever use? What would an incredibly large toilet paper look like? Who is someone that never uses toilet paper? Who is someone that uses it constantly? What can you do with 10,000 rolls of toilet paper? What would a world with no toilet paper look like? I flip back and forth between the extremes until something interesting comes out of it. And then you repeat the process based on that new idea. It’s a super-cool exercise only in that it forces you to explore the outside boundaries of things.
  • Check it out!
  • Check it out!
  • Check it out!
  • Check it out!
  • Check it out!
  • Check it out!
  • Check it out!

Learning To Love Ideas: Brainstorming 101 Learning To Love Ideas: Brainstorming 101 Presentation Transcript

  • LEARNING TO LOVE IDEASbrainstorming 101
    Front End Design Conference 2010
    Larissa Meek / ACD, AgencyNet
  • Intelligence is something we are born with. Thinking is a skill that must be learned.


    - Edward de Bono.
  • Why Brainstorm?The digital industry tends to underplay the emotions, symbology and story behind things.We are way focused on innovation, design and usability because it’s an interactive medium.
  • Brainstorming is not the same as Design Storming.
  • Example:Male Grooming Products,From Traditional to Digital.
  • 1888
  • Shaving Your “Cat” is a good idea. It’s just like Cream.
  • 1914
  • Women can shave like a man.
  • 1945
  • Buying L’AIGLON will keep your husbands happy.
  • 1969
  • Joan Daly Likes the Smell of Old Spice. Is there a better reason to wear Old Spice?
  • 2006
  • Phillips “Body Groom Site” – it’s good to shave your kiwi
  • 6 months ago
  • AXE says “Clean Your Balls”.
  • This Minute
  • Old Spice – “Your man might not look like this man, but he can smell like him. “
  • Old Spice – “Your man might not look like this man, but he can smell like him. “
  • Old Spice – “Your man might not look like this man, but he can smell like him. “
  • Old Spice – Telling a story via social platforms – YOU TUBE
  • Old Spice – Telling a story via social platforms – YOU TUBE
  • THE FUTURE:Social Platforms = Storytelling
  • Where do you Begin?
  • The worst thing a designer can hear is:“Just do whatever you want.”
  • More General = Less Focus
    More Focused = Clearer Target
  • Understanding the businessproblems will lead you to the right questions.
  • Is it better to brainstorm alone or in groups?
  • Photo Credit: Outcast by Momo=] on Flickr (All Rights Reserved) - http://www.flickr.com/photos/momodoodlez/4434403976/
    Photo Credit: Apples 01 by tanzia45 on Flickr (CC license share & remix) - http://www.flickr.com/photos/26816214@N07/4599778421/
  • Let’s look at the pros & cons
  • Which method is best? Start alone and then share your ideas with a group.
  • Tips for Brainstorming
  • Solo
    1. Exhaust all options
    2. Sketch or Draw
    3. Avoid disruptions
    4. Keep a journal
    5. Do what works for you
    It’s easier to sketch a comp or wireframe instead of just writing it. Don’t hold back.
    Photo Credit : Sketch Journal, May 27, 2007 | New York City by ldandersenon Flickr (CC license to share & remix) - http://www.flickr.com/photos/ldandersen/520023909/
  • In Groups
    1. Set a time limit
    2. Keep groups small
    3. Stay on track
    4. Give everyone a chance
    5. Don’t criticize
    It’s important to keep a positive attitude and not kill any ideas yet. You don’t know where they will lead.
    Photo Credit: eBeam Interactive Whiteboard by eBeam on Flickr (CC license to share or remix) http://www.flickr.com/photos/ebeam/2588228465/
  • Is there a good process?
    Let’s Talk Process.
  • 3 Simple Steps
  • 1.
    2.
    3.
    Explore all ideas without criticism
  • 1.
    2.
    3.
    Refine, Clarify & Condense
  • 1.
    2.
    3.
    Critique and choose the best ones.
  • What are some good methods?
  • 4 Square: Group Activity
    Start with a piece of paper and divide it into 4 squares.
  • Create 4 Squares
  • Present your Challenge:
    Ideate a viral campaign or website concept for the SuperSoft Toilet Paper Brand.
    Based on…
  • … An EMPTY ROLL
    Photo Credit: Oh Shit!!!!! by aimelieon Flickr (all rights reserved) - http://www.flickr.com/photos/aimelier/2297055020/
    Photo Credit: Mission 24 – Empty by Jessica Hime on Flickr (CC license share) - http://www.flickr.com/photos/jessia-hime/3031248108/
  • Ready, Set, Ideate!
    Slightly refine and simplify the idea from box A.
    (pass to the right)
    Write a completely outlandish, off-the wall idea.
    (pass to the right)
    Slightly refine and simplify the idea from box C.
    Slightly refine and simplify the idea from box B.
    (pass to the right)
  • Clustering
    Start with a central word and then write related words around it. One word may lead to another.
    Next draw lines connecting the words revealing patterns.
  • Mind Mapping
    A mind map is a diagram used to represent ideas linked to and arranged around a central concept or objective.
  • Scamper
    Scamper is an acronym for a set of questions that forces you to come up with new ideas. These may be questions that would not have normally been asked.
  • Scamper
    S substituteC combineA adaptM modifyP put to other usesE eliminateR rearrange or reverse
  • Morphological synthesis
    (grid of extremes)
    It forces you to explore the outside boundaries of things. Flip back and forth between the extremes until something interesting comes out of it.
  • Morphological synthesis
    1. Define the brainstorm problem2. Choose 2 parameters3. Create a grid 4. Fill out the sub-parameters4. Identify the possible combinations5. Eliminate the impossible or undesirable6. Choose your favorite options.
  • Problem: How can we make a digital execution for a toilet paper company based on an empty toilet paper roll?The 2 Parameters I chose are: Execution + Creative Elements
  • Creative Elements
    Execution
  • Final Thoughts:
  • Good design starts with a good idea.
  • Great ideas take experience, practice + hard work.
  • Say Hello.
    Larissa Meek
    @larissameek
    larissameek.com
    AgencyNet
    @agencynet
    agencynet.com