Silence Book Club: A Technique for Producing Ideas

How do you come up with a good idea for an advertising campaign?

This is the question we’ll be asking at our book club on March 7th when we discuss A Technique for Producing Ideas, a book from 1939 by the American adman James Wood Young.

Good quality advertising lives in the standard of the creative thinking, what we often call in our industry ‘the big idea’. “What’s the big idea?” You hear it all the time. This phrase survives alongside and will probably outlive fashionable terms in our industry like ‘the quantified self’, ‘programmatic’ and ‘engagement’.

The pursuit of the big idea is hugely important but we rarely chase it because it is risky and it is difficult when you compare it to the ease of delivering a ‘safe’ campaign.

The January edition of Creative Review argues that ‘risk taking work that gets a brand talked about is all too rare these days’. It points to what it calls the ‘slow erosion of bold creative work’. It cites this article in the FT by Ian Leslie that accuses us of forgetting our core strength – having quality ideas – in the rush towards digital.

But don’t worry, help is at hand. In A Technique for Producing Ideas, Young lays out the 5 steps of the creative process and argues that ‘the production of ideas is just as definite a process as the production of Fords’.

Book club will be meeting at Jerusalem on Rathbone Place from 6.30pm on Monday 7th March. Places are limited to 50 and you can sign-up on our Eventbrite page.

Lee Henshaw, Founder, 28th Jan 2016

Read more in:

Book Club

Featured work
facebook twitter youtube linkedin