Creative thinking for comms pros: brand metaphors

Oct 29, 2020

Creative thinking is not just something we do at work when we’re designing campaigns.

We can apply creative thinking to all parts of life and work.

I encourage our students in comms teams to spend ten minutes every now and then practicing creative thinking, to make your day-to-day comms a little fresher and more interesting (for you AND your audience).

We can get inspired by the things around us, or give ourselves a little exercise to do during our coffee break – like the ones we try in the 31 Days Of Creativity.

Fancy five minutes trying out a creative exercise right now?

Come on then.

We’ll use the airline Delta’s tweet as a starting point.

This tweet caught my eye because it so beautifully summed up how much of us feel about this year.

It subtly says: ‘if only we could just get away from all the misery of 2020 and move on’.

It’s not just shouting ‘hey everyone, are you cheesed off with this year?’.  That’s very general and a question anyone could ask.

The creativity comes from how it’s relevant to the brand and their audience by using a a flying metaphor we are familiar with – ‘ let’s get a one-way ticket out of here!’

Bravo Delta!

They’ve indulged in an excellent bit of creative thinking.

How you might use this as creative inspiration for your social media one day?

Think about metaphors that relate to your brand. Maybe you might use it to come up with some cool comms one day?

I’ll use a council as an example.  One service everyone is aware of is waste and recycling collections.

Councils get rid of waste for us.

So maybe you you could have an image of a bin collector emptying the year 2020 into the bin lorry.

It’s just a silly idea I had while writing this, and I doodled it to show you what I mean.
You don’t have to act on every idea, but the more you have, the more creative you get – it’s like going to the gym and building muscle.
And the more ideas you have, the more likely it is you’ll have one idea that is utter genius. This is called divergent thinking.
Don’t be afraid of silly ideas, just have lots and get your brain in creative shape.

There’s inspiration everywhere.

Maybe when you’re in the shower, or having a coffee break, you can take five minutes to think of metaphors that relate to your organisation.  Write them down somewhere and maybe they’ll come in handy later.

This is a small sample of the kind of creative thinking we’re exploring in our Boost Your Creativity Masterclass coming up in December.

Maybe you’ll join us, I hope so.


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Hel Reynolds

Hel Reynolds

Author of this post

Hel is social media trainer and boss of Comms Creatives. She has been working in comms since 2005, and has been brushing up her expertise in social media for brands since the good old days of MySpace. She also draws the Comms Cartoons, and is usually attached to a mug of coffee.

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