Today, we have a second installment in our Brainzooming series on strategic thinking questions inspired by the Fast Company list of the 100 Most Creative People in Business 2013.

Today’s strategic thinking questions focus on creativity, social media, and content marketing.

As we mentioned in yesterday’s post, these strategic thinking questions don’t appear in the Fast Company most creative people in business profiles. They were created by reviewing the profiles and asking ourselves what questions those profile may have asked themselves while working on their creative achievements.

The reason we’re emphatic this is because of what happened with Fast Company after publishing our post covering the 2012 list. We noticed late one morning the main Fast Company account shared our tweet about the blog post. Noting the hundreds of thousands of followers they have, I quickly inserted a Brainzooming ad in the post, and waited for the blog traffic explosion. Then, as a double check, I went to the Fast Company RT to see what it would be like to wind up at our blog from a Fast Company link.

Guess what?

Fast Company swapped out our link to Brainzooming in my original tweet, substituting one to the list on its website. If we’d ripped off their copy, I would completely understand. But our content is unique AND featured more than 100 links to the magazine’s website. That’s a social media foul, in my book, but what are you going to do?

Here are today’s UNIQUE strategic thinking questions. You can click to get to the underlying profiles, but don’t expect to find these creativity, social media, and content marketing questions there!

Creativity, Content Marketing, and Social Media Questions Inspired by the Fast Company 100 Most Creative People in Business 2013

Creativity Questions

How many scary and risky things do you say “Yes” to in the course of a year? How many do you say “No” to? What's the impact of your answers on your creative output? (13. Connie Britton - ACTRESS, NASHVILLE)

What are new ways to expand your global influences without having to leave your office? (2. Dong-Hoon Chang - EVP, HEAD OF DESIGN STRATEGY, SAMSUNG)

What’s the longest your organization has ever brainstormed, and are you ready to brainstorm 10x longer at one stretch? (27. Maria Mujica - LATIN AMERICAN MARKETING DIRECTOR, GUMS AND CANDY, MONDELĒZ INTERNATIONAL)

How can you deliberately create more white space to experiment, try stuff, learn, change, and do it better? (32.Hosain Rahman - FOUNDER, CEO, JAWBONE)

Why would it be interesting to hear you vent about what’s gone wrong or has failed in your life? (34. Marc Maron - COMEDIAN, WTF WITH MARC MARON)

If you were required to triple the number of new creative ideas you generate on any given day, what would you do differently to boost your creative output? (37. Darrin Crescenzi - SENIOR DESIGNER, PROPHET)

What creative residue do you leave yourself at the end of the day to fuel a quick creative start tomorrow? (47. Simon Rich – WRITER)

How can you grow the number of self-described “creatives” you talk to weekly to boost your new ideas? (6. Max Levchin - CEO, AFFIRM; BOARD MEMBER, YAHOO)

How would it change your creative perspective if, as a TV show’s creator is called a “showrunner,” your title were whatever you produce + “runner”? (77-83. TV’S Head of the Class – A GROUP OF SIX TV SHOW CREATORS)

If you typically have a plan in place for your creativity, how would just starting and seeing what happens feel more refreshing and creative? (77-83. TV’S Head of the Class – A GROUP OF SIX TV SHOW CREATORS)

How can you bring together young, experienced people and older, inexperienced people to reverse the typical learning environment of the older teaching the young? (84. Michelle Rowley - FOUNDER, CODE SCOUTS)

What happens when you flip your typical creative process around completely? (90. Pendleton Ward – ANIMATOR)

What’s stopping you from asking for favors and help from people you have no business trying to talk to? (96. Ruzwana Bashir - COFOUNDER, CEO, PEEK)

Lots of risk can thwart addressing lots of societal need, unless someone is bold enough to do something – how bold are you? (98. Wendell Pierce - COFOUNDER, STERLING FARMS FRESH FOODS)

Content Marketing and Social Media Questions

How can you collect and share more real-life stories of people your company has helped in meaningful, personal ways? (10. Scott Harrison - FOUNDER, CHARITY: WATER)

What would happen if you tried to come up with and select a year’s worth of content marketing ideas before you published your first piece of content? (18. Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele - COCREATORS AND STARS, KEY & PEELE)

If you covered only one topic, how would the narrow topic free you for incredible diversity in how you deliver content on the topic? (20. Lara Setrakian- FOUNDER, SYRIA DEEPLY)

What are all the ways you are and aren’t making it easy for your fans to create and share content about their experiences with your brand? (40. Kate Phelan and Justin Cooke - CREATIVE DIRECTOR, TOPSHOP; CMO, TOPSHOP)

How are you getting ready to have your brand catch and do something with the content your audience throws back at you? (21. Jaime Robinson - VP, EXECUTIVE CREATIVE DIRECTOR, PEREIRA & O’DELL)

If you’re giving new content away, what and when will you get paid for it? (28. Diplo - DJ, FOUNDER, MAD DECENT)

What are new ways to serve up your best content and not just your most recent content to readers? (45. Kate Lee - DIRECTOR OF CONTENT, MEDIUM)

What will it take for your brand to process external inputs and do / say something about them in real-time via social media? (7. Jill Applebaum and Megan Sheehan - CREATIVE DIRECTOR, JWT; ART DIRECTOR AND DESIGNER)

Would a prank via social media potentially help draw attention to a cause you care about deeply? (76. Rebecca Nagle and Hannah Brancato - FEMINIST ACTIVISTS)

When it comes to content, what more could you do with your content to create attention for your brand or another brand that needs attention? (88. Sscott Borchetta - CEO, BIG MACHINE RECORDS)

How can you create a place for smart, opinionated, and even snarky customers to hang out and share their knowledge about what they love (which might not be your brand)? (91. Mahbod Moghadam - COFOUNDER, RAP GENIUS)

What will it take to create as clear a group of dissenters for your content as you have created fans? (92. Leandra Medine - FOUNDER, MANREPELLER.COM)

If you provided 3 weeks of training to the content creators in your organization, how would you best use the time? (97. Stephanie Horbaczewski - PRESIDENT, CEO, STYLEHAUL) 

Mike Brown

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