By Emily Scher
The Hoffman Agency, San Jose
One of the most enticing things about public relations is that it allows you to bring your creativity to work with you. The days are filled with brainstorms and planning meetings, and you constantly have the chance to throw out the most random ideas that could turn into something outstanding.
I will be the first to admit that I need to take my own advice to heart. I am often guilty of conjuring up ideas, but then being “creativity shy.” When you first get your feet wet in PR, the creative element can be extremely intimidating. Contributing your ideas to brainstorms, especially for varying accounts, takes time and practice. But it’s important to keep in mind that your team will always value your contributions, regardless if they think your idea is whacky.
Here are a few ways that can help you step up that creative game:
1. Adjust Your Mindset and Speak Up
The first key to bringing out your inner creative spark is to take feedback with a grain of salt. Of course working with your team on a central goal is critical, but it’s also necessary to keep in mind that everyone has his or her own opinions. You can’t let the fear of negative feedback hold you back. Be confident with your ideas and play up your strengths. Remember, don’t let constructive criticism stifle your creativity and process.
2. Read, and Then Read Some More
It’s easy to get caught up in news that is solely related to your client and its industry. But make an effort to keep an eye on other brands’ news. Random campaigns, events, blogs, etc., can often spark unexpected ideas and unleash that inner creativity.
Reading the news is undoubtedly important, but don’t forget to read just for fun as well. Taking the time to read something entirely free of marketing or advertising can be especially relaxing and has the ability to put you in the mindset to get those creativity juices flowing.
3. Always Try New Things
I know, I know … most of us have our weekly schedules set to a tee — wake up, coffee, work, coffee, gym, dinner, bed and repeat. Make an effort to get out there during the week and try new things. The Hoffman Agency sets a great example of people making their evenings (and mornings) count. People are always talking about the rec league football game they played last night, the painting class they went to with friends or the Zumba class they had at 5 a.m. The more you put yourself into new environments, activities and groups of people, the more you’ll experience different audiences. This can only lead to good (creative) things.