6 Principles of Marketing - No. 6 BS

Not what you think it is. BS in this instance stands for 'Brainstorm'.

It is very easy, within any organisation, for people to get stuck into a rut of what they are doing, without taking time out to look at the big picture. This applies to organisations large and small.

If you are running a small team, when was the last time you asked the members of that team about what ideas they thought might work to improve the business?

Brainstorming is a great way to get lots of new ideas out in the open and then move from there.

It's important to know what the rules of brainstorming are in this context. Once you have a group of people in the room and you have set aside a fixed amount of (undisturbed) time to complete the exercise, this is what should happen...

  1. You explain the problem or the situation
  2. You ask for suggestions from the group
  3. It is vital that all people present are encouraged to participate
  4. At this point also explain that all suggestions from everyone will go up on the board - none can be poo-poo'd by anyone else in the room, particularly not by the boss or senior people
  5. All ideas are written up on a whiteboard or a piece of butchers paper
  6. Once all ideas are up on the board, the group can only then discuss the relative merits of each

Brainstorming can unveil new approaches to problems, or even problems that senior team members may have been unaware of. A group working together is always going to outperform one person trying to find answers on their own.

This the last in our series of 6 concepts of marketing. Should we add any others?

David Bateson