05: The Big Idea
Every ad starts off and is based off an idea or concept that determines what the target audience gets from said ad. It's good to start off answering the 5 Ws (and How) as a kick starter Looking for 'insight' helps the process of coming up with an idea and exacting it; getting a feel for what others think and helping further develop ideas from that feedback or comments. Creating visuals, like maps and information trees are good to create when dealing with information from groups of people that give you more insight that you need. The Art of Thought, by Graham Wallas, is a good step by step guide on coming up with a good concept. Preparation, look for connections; Incubation, a mental break; Illumination, clear and interesting communication formulated into a design; Verification, evaluate the idea and make sure it hits all of the necessary marks.
There are different ways that an idea could be taken one or more steps further; combining and connecting ideas, objects, related topics, unrelated topics, making an analogy, creating a compare and contrast scenario, etc are some of the ways to foster an ad into the imaginative stage. One can also "change perspectives" or look at things with an "eccentric point of view", essentially taking what is obvious or expecting and either metaphorically or physically flip them! A sort of visual pun that captures the attention and makes itself memorable. I think the cancer ads on page 85 are a good example of taking an ad in a direction you didn't see coming. You read the first lines and you think the next lines are going to say something unrelated, but no, instead it keeps you on the topic but sort of.. turns it regardless. It's creative and the tone is perfect, considering the subject. It goes from beginning to sound like a bad joke or a cliche to something serious, but in the end you still come out laughing a bit at yourself all while remembering the message. The hearse ad on page 91 I thought was pretty interesting, more often now you see ads that take up the entire side of a bus like that. That reminded me of this ad for FedEx and how it sort of gives you that sort of creative distortion of visuals all the while trying to be funny.