Using Your Assets: Creativity

Creative entrepreneurs have existed throughout history. Creativity is timeless.

Creativity does not have to cost much — it can take the place of big expenditures. In fact, creativity can be a powerful asset if you learn to use it and not hold back.

Case in point: recently I attended the Small Business Marketing Unleashed Conference. As is typical at such conferences, each attendee received a bag with promotional materials from sponsors. In the bag I saw this:


It’s exactly what it looks like: a real U.S. dollar bill with a Post-It Note attached. The note says: “Are you looking for help marketing a small business online? Give me 10 minutes and I will trade you $1 for $10!”

Now, I’ve been to a lot of conferences over the years. But this promotion stood out.

It was remarkably creative. It was memorable. It was simple. For a matter of a couple hundred dollars in dollar bills total, and the cost of getting a Post-It pad printed up, the sponsor had a promotion that was a conversation piece. (See, I’m talking about it right now to the world.)

The sponsor that created this promotion is a small business called from New Orleans. Despite hurricanes, they managed to come up with a creative marketing promotion.

I don’t know how many people took Will Scott, the owner, up on his offer to trade the dollar bill and get ten dollars. But if 50 did, that’s an additional $450 the sponsor would have paid out. If 100 took him up on it, that’s an additional $900. When you consider the cost of printed collaterals or schwag, it may actually have been cheap.

When was the last time you used creativity to take the place of money or staff or anything else in short supply? Have you leveraged your creativity asset recently … done something creative to create a memorable marketing campaign or otherwise drive business results?

Anita Campbell Anita Campbell is the Founder, CEO and Publisher of Small Business Trends and has been following trends in small businesses since 2003. She is the owner of BizSugar, a social media site for small businesses.