Sound Communication: The Holdcom Blog

Audio Marketing Script Tip: Brainstorm Correctly

Brainstorming session - how to write scripts for audio marketingDid you learn how to brainstorm when you were in school? Our teachers taught us how to work in groups and the right ways to resolve conflicts, but brainstorming techniques were rarely part of the curriculum.  So what is brainstorming?

Wikipedia says that Brainstorming is a group creativity technique by which a group tries to find a solution for a specific problem by gathering a list of ideas spontaneously contributed by its members. The term was popularized by Alex Faickney Osborn in 1953 through the book Applied Imagination. In the book, Osborn not only proposed the brainstorming method but also established effective rules for hosting brainstorming sessions.

Brainstorming has become a popular group technique and has aroused attention in academia. Multiple studies have been conducted to test Osborn’s postulation that brainstorming is more effective than individuals working alone in generating ideas . Some researchers have concluded that the statement is false (brainstorming is not effective), while others uncovered flaws in the research and determined that the results are inconclusive. Furthermore, researchers have made modifications or proposed variations of brainstorming in an attempt to improve the productivity of brainstorming. However, there is no empirical evidence to indicate that any variation is more effective than the original technique.

As you develop audio marketing content, you’ll have to decide what to produce and what you want heard by your customer and potential customer base. You might end up doing this alone, but it’s always beneficial to get others' ideas and input. Either way, it’s good to know how to successfully brainstorm so why not apply it to developing effective Message On Hold content.

For your on hold marketing programs, you can use brainstorming sessions to:

  • Develop seasonal content
  • Create a caller profile or persona
  • Decide how your messages should sound once they’re produced
  • Create a list of products or services to feature

 How do you brainstorm?

  •  Choose a writer. If you’re working alone, it’s you! If you’re working in a group, choose someone who can participate in the conversation and write or type at the same time. If you’re going to be writing, choose someone with legible handwriting.
  •  Select a visual display method. What’s that? A whiteboard is a good option, or you can use a computer or projector in your office. Instead of recording individual ideas on paper, so only the recorder can read them, you want to create a dynamic list that is being shared with the entire group.
  •  Define the problem. In this case, it might be, “How should we be assessing customer satisfaction” or “How should we update our Message On Hold this Autumn?” By making sure you have a clear goal in mind, you can help to generate good ideas.
  • Be prepared to get the ball rolling. If you have a group of people that don’t often work together, you might need to organize an icebreaker activity. Come to the meeting with one general idea that can help inspire others.
  • Write everything down, even if you don’t think it will work out. Generating ideas is a process. When working in a group, people often base their contributions on things said immediately before them. Even if Person A’s idea to make your new mascot at Crab won’t work, Person B might then suggest a fish, which could be a perfect fit.
  • No Disclaimers. Don’t let people start their ideas with a disclaimer like, “This probably won’t work but…” Explain to participants that even if they’re not sure how their concepts will work out, they should still say them.

After your brainstorming session, go through the list and come up with the key concepts you’d like to pursue. Keep this list for future use, because an idea that won’t fit one project might be perfect for the next.

When it's time to write your script, after your brainstorming session, download Holdcom's FREE "Script Tips Greatest Hits" Compilation as a reference.

Tags: message on hold, marketing, tips