To Invent Great Products--Turn Ideas Upside Down: The Practical Creativity Checklist

A number of methods for rearranging the existing and old into the different and new actually account for most innovations in the world. There may not be anything new under the sun.

Which means you can easily develop new products with a 'Practical Creativity Checklist.'

Number one: Can we "plus" the product, service or business? "Plussing" is addition, adding to. A while ago a company rolled out a new product, peanut butter and jelly swirled together in the same jar. Depending on how you want to look at it they "plussed" the peanut butter with jelly or vice versa. The product didn't do well but it's a good example of the idea.

Number two: Can we can minus the product, service or business? A convertible is a car without a hardtop.

Number three: Can we do it with size? The entire instant printing industry is a result of a size change. Once upon a time printing companies we're large and relatively inaccessible and intimidating to the general public and the small entrepreneur. Printers were located in cheap rent and industrial sections of town. They had no customer service people. The instant print shop, the small print shop changed the industry dramatically by mixing modern, retailing methods with an old industrial service.

Number four: Can we change it through usage? Railroad ties are decorative items for landscaping.

Number five: Can we change it with color? The computer monitor is a monitor but a hot product in the computer industry today are monitors available in a variety of brightly colored plastic boxes, hot pink, purple, yellow and fire engine red.

Number six: Can we change its market? The perfect example of this is again, the computer industry. All the original thinking behind this industry saw the computer as a business product like the copy machine. But at some point the PC, the personal computer was born. The innovation here is really not a different product it was a change in thinking about the market for the product.

Number seven: Can we make a price change? Installment purchasing was a price change innovation. The classic two for one sale was a price change marketing strategy. In the restaurant business the dinner for two is a price change marketing strategy.

Number eight: Can we resurrect the old? Remember that convertible automobiles were a dead issue in the industry until Iacocca brought them back to life. This type of creativity stimulates grouped on a checklist help you look at a given product, service or business from many different perspectives.

Dan Kennedy is one of the world's top direct marketing consultants and the author of many books, including No B.S. Marketing. See his profit producing, wealth attraction resources at: And take a 3 month complimentary "test drive" of the Dan Kennedy No-BS Marketing Newsletter at

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