Every time I sit in front of my laptop, working on a study project, an article for the magazine or a new blog post, I find myself half an hour later distracted by social media and newsfeed from my favorite magazines. I open the new tab in my browser to search for some useful and necessary information for the task I do but finish with five new tabs with articles and features that catch up my attention. I even was distracted from the article about avoiding distraction! I think many my peers would recognize themselves in this description. The ES Magazine (2017) quotes the report from advertising agency OMD, which shows people shift their attention between the smartphone, tablet and laptop 21 times an hour in average, or every 3 minutes.
For a long time, I considered this as the problem and was looking for the ways to keep my concentration on the task I’ve planned to do. And then the great discover appeared: only through these ‘distracting’ sites I’ve ever come up with my ideas. Whatever I read or watch always gives me the inspiration and if it appears on the page, that I opened for the project, that in the majority of cases it would be somehow related to the task.
Raising the topic of procrastination, I actually aim to discuss the creativity and the way ideas are born. Nobody would argue with statistics from PR Week (2016) that 88% of PR professionals consider creativity to be the main part of their work. But what really stays behind the creativity?
If we look to the blogs by PR practitioners and agencies, we will discover they see the creativity and different ways and use dozens of technic to set the idea for the campaign. But almost all of them admit, that to develop the creativity as skill, the person needs to look around for inspiration and stimulation (PR Week, 2016). It’s crucial to know your audience and the context, to be aware of new technologies and new trends in different areas of our lives to communicate successfully, and though, reading through distracting articles or updating the newsfeed at your Instagram helps to stay in tune. Being creative means learning all the time, – says Mark Perkins, creative director at MHP Communications. He admits in getting aspiration from other PR campaigns and ads as well as from art and the media. “Great ideas can come from working under great pressure and focus, but how much nicer to have an idea pop into your head while you’re sitting under a tree, having a few quiet moments…” claims the Twelve PR agency in their own blog, and I fully agree with them. I can’t remember any case I got the idea of anything just sitting before the white piece of paper and concentrating on the brief or question.
To be creative it may be useful to be distracted time to time. We should let ourselves to procrastinate sometimes, cause this way we are getting the inspiration and understanding of current situations. The only important thing to remember is using our finding and inspirations properly. And of course manage cleverly, which media and influencers we follow in our Social Media. Let’s be distracted for good!
Chadwick, S. (2016) Inspiring creativity within PR campaigns. PR Week. Accessible from http://www.prweek.com/article/1399078/inspiring-creativity-within-pr-campaigns.
PR Moment. (2016) How to find the next big idea. PRMoment.com. Accessible from http://www.prmoment.com/category/pr-insight/how-to-find-the-next-big-idea.
Luckhurst, Ph. (2017) How to reclaim your brain and get your concentration back. ES Magazine. Accessible from http://www.standard.co.uk/lifestyle/esmagazine/how-to-reclaim-your-brain-and-get-your-concentration-back-a3442411.html.
Markman, A. (2014) The importance of ritual to the creative process. Fast Company. Accessible from https://www.fastcompany.com/3035281/hit-the-ground-running/the-importance-of-ritual-to-the-creative-process.
Twelve PR. (No date.) Creative PR ideas. Accessible from http://www.twelvepr.co.uk/creative-pr-ideas/.