Pushing Ideas

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How many great ideas do you know that die on the table? How many great ideas are barely on life support?

Ideas are great and getting things done is even greater, but the hard part in having an idea come to life lies in the middle. The truth of the matter is that nobody likes to be pushed around, but that’s the only way a great idea will ever see the light of day. To a certain degree, crowdsourcing and wikis can only take things so far. They’re great tools for the evolution of an idea, and they’re equally capable when it comes to getting an idea to spread, but the hard part of getting an idea to come to life is in pushing it through.

Getting over the noise to another level.

The greatest marketing ideas (from sharp TV campaigns to the ultimate in Social Media community building) are probably not the ones we see in our everyday life. Those great ideas are nowhere (still stuck in someone’s head, scribbled on a random whiteboard, written down in a Moleskin, posted to a Blog, etc…), because having the original idea is never as challenging as pushing an idea through, but that’s the real job here. That’s the real job of Marketing. That’s the job you need to ensure you’re working on day in and day out.

Sometimes we settle too much.

Ho-hum marketing and advertising is not because the agency failed and it’s not because the brand wasn’t willing to take any risks (that’s a lie, it is sometimes due to that exact reason). There have been too many instances where the idea died simply because the person who came up with the gem in the first place didn’t have the critical skillset to push that idea through.

It’s not about being a jerk.

When people think of "pushing an idea through" they immediately envision a pushy individual. It’s simply not the case. One of the fundamental reasons to engage and connect in these online channels to create a platform for yourself. A space in time. A moment. A place where you can create ideas, push them out there, get comments and feedback, accept that feedback (or reject it) and, ultimately, know if what you’re doing resonates (with the industry you serve or the company you keep).

People are simply scared.

If you really look at those who make significant inroads in the Digital Marketing channels (Blogs, Podcasts, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, etc…), it truly is a small group (usually of individuals) who are comfortable wearing their hearts on their sleeves. It’s easy to hide behind a screen-name (love the keyboard warriors) spewing criticism, but the part that we all need to respect a whole lot more is that these idea generators have the courage to push their ideas out there and share them with the world. They attempt to see if what’s in their brain matches or makes sense with those around them – and they’re willing to take a heap of heat in the process if they’re off.

That’s really why people connect and stay connected.

In the end, I love Social Media because it is "real" (yes, in quote marks, because my reality is not your reality). This is a unique moment in time where (maybe) Marketing can evolve. Where maybe we can have all of these connected, human voices, who can actually do what Marketing should have been doing from day one: helping one another to make better and different decisions.


Changing the landscape of Marketing by using these channels to help push more, newer and different ideas out there. To let people share the ideas, comment on them, pass them along, tweak them and adapt them.

If we’re not pushing ideas out there, what are we really doing?


  1. Mitch I think we have something here. Social Media allows corporations to create places where fans of the community can share and interact. These are the loyal customers that want your brand to succeed. To a corporation they are your life line. Every community should have a place to play and share ideas that will propel your brand forward. In dealing with corporations CXX are now starting to understand the power of this interaction. The best results allow for the most freedom….This is the tough part for corporate world. However, because of people like you Mitch I believe we are finally making progress. This process does not change our goals but adds another channel to enable interaction which done correctly will strengthen ideas and allow us to reach our goals faster because we are utilizing our communities to the full extent.
    Keep up the great work!

  2. Thanks Mitch,
    I have just finished your book: six pixels of seperation, and would like you to know that I will proudly sit it on my bookshelf.
    You will not believe it, but I found it at the local school fair on the weekend for the princely sum of $2. And I regard it as priceless. So believing that you need to take life as you find it, I am taking your book to heart and running forwards with it.
    Your comments regarding personal branding really hit the mark and cleared some of the cloud of uncertainty that has been floating around in my head.
    A graphic designer for the last 24 years (and reaching the big 50 at the end of the year), I decided 12 months ago to rediscover the passion for design, but design in a much more broader sense – away from the traditional visual aspect.
    Being from the island State of Tasmania, Australia it honestly feels that you on the outside looking in, when it comes to design thinking and design community support.
    So I started a website and included a blog to connect to a wider audience. Your book has shown me that I need to realign my content to what I really wanted to say and who I am First, rather trying to find new business.
    I am. I think. Design.
    I wanted to emphasis that I am proud to be a designer and make people aware (locally) that design can make a difference in a broader sense – I want to convey a sense of connection, a personalised and contextual experience. To showcase global thinking and by FYI [free your imagination] anything is possible.
    Thanks again, great job on the book and your bog.

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