I came across this graphic the other day entitled, "How would you like your graphic design?"
Now, based on the graphic, it implies that if you pick any of the two large circles, the intersecting "saucy" remark will be your overall result. As a designer, I tend to agree with this, but at the same time, great ideas with impact don't always have to break the bank.
My interest in graphic design and advertising spawned from the music and skateboarding culture, which comes from very humble beginnings. It was always about dishing out as little money as possible for the biggest results and that came with a price, using your head. We always used to say, "Ideas cost nothing!" Then we realized ideas take time, but sometimes thinking things through can save you money and generate ideas that get people talking!
An example: A band didn't want to press hundreds of discs to release a single because they would have had to put a price point on them that didn't really make sense for the consumer. So, we suggested doing a poster and putting downloadable codes on the back and charging a more desirable price (considering nobody had heard of the band before). That way, after the music was downloaded, the poster became a bedroom billboard for another set of impressionable eyes.
I realize this is obviously a very niche example, but it's more the idea of understanding where the edges of the box are and knowing how to climb out to achieve the best results for the least action.
Here are some more examples:
This seed company just printed the company’s information on a seed packet - items that this company is probably not short of.
A restaurant/bar in Toronto called "The Super Market" did a really great job of showing off a very simple and cost effective stationery using a recycled paper bag and a simple price sticker with the name of the business on it.
Something as simple as a score in the card can be extremely effective. You can see this in the dentist’s business card as the dental floss is weaved through the cuts.
What other examples of creative thinking are you seeing out there?