Do we still have the patience for creativity?

Do we still have the patience for creativity?

Quicker. Faster. More obvious.

Being succinct and to the point has always been a core component of our craft – a way for our work to stand out in a sprawling sea of noise.

But has the race to immediacy driven us to a place of beige?

According to researchers Shackwell and Bruza, the ‘ubiquitous reproduction’ of ideas in our tech-forward modern world means that “the arc for creative impact is growing shorter as the need to be immediately intelligible promotes the formulaic at the expense of the interpretable.” (1) Or, in non-academic speak – nobody has any patience for new ideas, so doing the same-old, same-old is the order of the day.

It’s why we’re seeing the same generic TV programmes, hearing the same generic music and, in our profession, finding that it’s the same generic ideas appearing again and again.

Yet there is a paradox here.

That's because we also know that original (or at least novel) ideas are the ones that stand out and have impact (2). They get remembered even when that sprawling sea has evaporated. We just don’t, it would appear, have the patience for them.

Which is why it’s our job as creatives to remind both clients and consumers that the best creative ideas can take time – both to develop and to savour. 

Like dressing for winter, these ideas are often about layers. A simple thought that is easy to grasp but which has depth, with the scope to tell bigger stories across multiple channels.

The impatient consumer will understand and be captured by the former, those who take an interest can embrace the latter. These ideas don’t happen by mistake, and they are not created in an instant. They require genuine synchronicity of strategy and creative, and care and love in their execution.

Which is why, as any Guinness drinker will attest, good things come to those who (are prepared to) wait.

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