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A rough guide on polishing The Big Idea | Slangbusters Blog
Mar 29, '19

A rough guide on polishing The Big Idea

Ideas are not momentary, unlike the semiotic one-flick bulbs that represent the concept of getting an idea. This idea could be a bolt out of the blue from subconscious ideation or it could be a deliberate 77th draft and the idea bloomed into existence🌸. In either case, an idea is a process, cultivation of thought, or even a revolution in some cases.

Person holding a macro camera lens near a pink flower

If you are looking for the 5 Cs and 10 Ps and XYZs of “bringing your idea to life,” the SEO gods have betrayed you. This piece is not a micro crash course that will claim to give you a D.I.Y.-instant-idea-to-product-recipe because, as much disaster too many cooks can bring to the broth, one novice can guarantee a mess.

Your recent Google search history could have phrases like,
“I have an idea and who do I speak to”
“I have a startup idea what do I do next”
“I have an idea but I don’t know how to start it”
“I have a startup Idea but no money”

And we are not assuming here, these are actual Google suggestions when you start typing “I have an idea…” in the search bar. These are the phrases that future entrepreneurs search for, but perversely end up reading pieces that are primarily keyword cocktails with no educative value. Adding to the travesty, the jargonized approach of digital literature to falsely portray superiority adds to the devaluation of the concept of blogs.

We are here to Slangbust some concepts and terms by following our maxim: We Explain Better. If you use textbook language, you will connect to only industry professionals who are not your end users. One interacts with someone they understand, right?

We explain better. | Slangbusters Branding Studio
“Brands exist in the minds of people who interact with them” -Brian Collins, in interaction with Debbie Millman

Great ideas are a dime a dozen. Every now and then, people get great ideas but with a missing will to actually work on executing them. We all dream of genius which according to Edison is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration and most people don’t get beyond the initial one percent.

If you are confused where you stand between getting an idea and a tangible product in the market, read on to know the ideal flow. You’ll figure out the rest.

To have a great idea, you require a tremendous amount of effort- not of the physical kind but mental. An idea does not come out of a vacuum. It is born from a problem, that is subjective to you. It is born as a potential solution. The nature of the problem could be as small as waiting-time at the traffic signal to contributing a new way of thinking to an entire generation. No matter the scale of the problem or the time it takes to arrive at the perfect solution, it requires the involvement of both the brains. The imaginative and the real, both are involved to give birth to an idea that is induced in the heat of social or personal context.

Top view of a busy crossroad with a red taxi in the middle

With every unique idea, the time required is subjective. To act on an idea in its infancy causes you to miss out on further iterations of the idea that would have been better and waiting too long causes you to lose interest in it. In this case, what is a future Madame Curie supposed to do? Use a faculty that is not talked about often, the gist of which is found in great speeches and timeless books; the gut feeling. Your gut feeling is something that is not really afraid of anything and is correct all the time. It is the Oracle in the Matrix. It is what sees right through you and your surroundings. So, to better organize this:

Once you have an idea then begins the process of marinating it. Think of the idea as a cookie. With the above process, you have kneaded the cookie dough well. In this analogy, marination is resting the cookie dough before baking. Now, if you take it out of the oven too early, it will be undercooked and doughy. If it is left in the oven for too long, it will be a tough cookie to crack (pun intended). You will have to figure out that sweet spot (pun again hehe) when you take the cookie out, and it tastes perfect with the desired texture.

Brown cookies and a cup of milk on a green table

Ideas are similar, except for the time period. You see, if you have ever prepared a dish from a recipe book you would find that those recipes are tried and tested over multiple trial and errors. It is those trials that have confirmed the exact time of resting, baking, and serving. Although, there is no recipe for success, especially when you are building a brand, not baking a cookie.

This is when the real grunt work begins. One always begins with research. Not just Google, but reading up various reports, case studies of similar ideas, timeless books, taking up online courses, attending events and the most important one- conversations with the ones in the industry. Before beginning the research, however, you will need a checklist or as Dan Roam calls them, buckets. Once you have your buckets, your task is to fill them with relevant data. We have listed down a few basic buckets to get you started with.

Once these buckets are filled, you need someone with an ability to connect the dots, naturally. Basically, every human ever. It is then, that you will begin to see a pattern and everything will start making sense. The next step is to create a plan for the market penetration, the funding, and the most important part; the product itself. It is very important to have a vision that is above making money.

Your vision should be one that inspires someone to work with you. Articulating the vision, however, is a different post altogether.

Rob Walker writes in the foreword of Debbie Millman’s Brand Thinking, “You cannot grow, extract, manufacture or download brands. A brand is nothing but an idea.” Our passion is building great brands. You bring the idea, we will help you brand it.
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