No matter which profession you are in, the ability to come up with fresh ideas can help you perform better than others. Don’t forget that an idea is the first step to create something innovative.
Moreover, an idea provides solutions for various practical problems of life and work.
In today’s post, we are going to talk about some idea generation techniques and tools that will help you come up with innovative ideas for your business and life.
So without any further delay, let’s get to know about them.
Brainstorming is one of the popular idea-generating techniques that has been used for decades all across the globe. For those who don’t know, the brainstorming process involves the contribution of suggestions from all members of a group. We love the random word brainstorming technique.
Do you know what makes this technique so popular? Well, the reason is, no one gets laughed at even if he/she comes up with a stupid idea. There is no right or wrong idea in brainstorming. Every member has to say the first thing that comes to their minds.
After the brainstorming sessions, you have to filter suggestions that have the potential to get success. It is as simple as that.
2. Social Listening
Over the past few years, social media has become an ideal platform to accumulate feedback from your audience. You can analyze those suggestions to find new opportunities.
Social media platforms can be used as an idea generation tool to get fresh ideas. However, for that, you will need to do social listening.
Get to know what your target audience has to say about a specific subject, product, or service. You can use platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to get exciting insights from end-users.
There are plenty of ways you can utilize social platforms for idea generation. For example, you can directly ask your audience what they want, or you can create an opinion poll. You can send a survey through email to your audience with a tool like Survey Monkey or put on right on your website with Hotjar.
3. Mind Mapping
Mind Mapping is another excellent technique to generate ideas and concepts. Thinkers and philosophers have been using it for centuries.
The Mind Mapping technique uses a diagram for describing tasks, words, and concepts connected to a central idea.
Invented by Tony Buzan, this technique can be used for planning, organizing, and more.
The technique involves drawing an idea (you’re planning to develop) in the middle of a blank page. Then you create some subtopics around the central topic and connect them to the center topic with a line. Similarly, you repeat the process for creating lower-level sub-ideas.
4. Reverse Thinking
As the name indicates, this technique requires thinking about opposite ideas. Confused? Let’s understand it with an example.
Suppose you have a fan page on Instagram and you want to increase your fan base. What you can do is, instead of asking people “how to increase a fan base?”, you can ask, how can I ensure I have no fans at all?”
You will notice that for the latter question, you will get a lot of creative ideas because you are forced to produce negative ideas that you should avoid. Once you have a lot of opposite ideas, you can reverse these ideas to get solutions to improve your fan base.
For example, if someone suggests you not to post regularly on Instagram, you can start posting content regularly on Instagram. It is as simple as that.
Now you know about the mind mapping technique to get creative ideas, but do you know there are some tools that can help you with it. Mindmeister is one such tool that is specially designed for mind mapping.
More than 7 million people use this tool to create and share ideas visually.
It is a cloud-based tool that helps you brainstorm, create project plans, and manage meetings online. Since it supports the shared environment, users from distinct places can collaborate and solve issues in real-time. You and your team can work together to mind maps and generate good ideas.
As soon as the brainstorming process complete, you can use your iPhone to present your idea.
The good thing is that Mindmeister allows you to important files that you need at the time form Dropbox, Google Drive, and Ever note.
If you’re looking for a startup idea, this tool can come handy. IdeasWatch is a platform where new business ideas are crowdsourced. You can get more than 2000 ideas from the crowd.
Here people share their ideas for new products or services they are expecting from businesses. Entrepreneurial minds from all over the world do an open discussion on the sustainability of these ideas. You may consider working on ideas you find exciting and have more chances to be successful.
Javelin is a popular web application that helps startups generate excellent business ideas by identifying their customer needs. It enables you to define your prospects’ assumptions and know their requirements by conducting interviews.
Besides this, Javelin allows you to create landing pages for A/B testing so that you can analyze the success rate of your idea. The good thing about this application is that you pay only for the service you choose.
Coggle is another mind mapping tool in the list designed especially for small businesses. You can use this tool to create and share mind maps in real-time.
Coggle can be quite helpful in comprehending and sharing complex information.
This freemium web application helps you create impressive mindmaps quickly and take notes while brainstorming. You can share your ideas with your colleagues or friends so that they can all work on your ideas together.
So these are a few tried and trusted idea generation techniques and tools. Let us know which technique or tool you find more convenient and useful in the comment section below.