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September 7, 2010 / jasonpinto

Rejected Marketing Ideas: Trash or Treasure?

In the latest edition of Rolling Stone magazine, Lorne Michaels talks about how ideas are presented and often rejected for Saturday Night Live.

The writers for the show will come up with creative thoughts, and then develop and write many different skits. They’ll present the skits to the boss (Lorne) and the other writers. Then, they are often told that a skit is not good enough to be put on the actual show.

At that point, a writer can throw the skit away and work on new ideas. Or, they can file that skit away and try to present it again at another time.

One of the most famous SNL skits in recent memory is “More Cowbell”. In the Rolling Stone article, we learn that skit was rejected and re-presented 7 times before it actually saw the light of day. With that much “failure” surrounding it, that skit could easily have ended up in the trash. However, it went on to become one of the show’s greatest moments.

There are many ideas that we may think of when it comes to marketing our company, product, or services. We have many “flashes of creativity” that excite us for a while. But for one reason or another, they are not converted into actual marketing campaigns. Reasons may include budget, timing, or just a lack of resources.

Many of those ideas may end up in the trash for a good reason. They can’t all be great. However, we may find that keeping ideas filed away may provide benefits to us months or even years down the road.  Technology makes it very easy for us to store ideas. It could be in the “Notes” app on our smart phone. Or perhaps we keep an easily retrievable document somewhere that we can edit at any time.

There will be times when flashes of creativity escape us. If we take the time to review our list of “ideas from the past that never quite became reality”, we may find the inspiration that we need to create and develop a successful marketing effort.

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