5 Steps to Creating a Mind Map
When brainstorming ideas, the mind is running 100 MPH, quickly tearing through possible new innovations, solutions to current problems, and hypothetical future features of your product. During these fast paced intense brainstorming sessions, it's easy to lose track of great ideas or lose your train of thought. That’s where Mind Mapping comes in. A mind map is a unique visual that allows a brainstorming session to become a tangible and editable object. Mind maps combine layouts, colors, images, and font sizes to best illustrate the hierarchy of importance and train of thought of the creator, and always lead to the most effective brainstorming sessions.
- Create a Core Idea – Start with your central idea in the middle of your mind map. What problem are you trying to solve? What is the new feature you’re working on?
- Branch Off – Create branches that stem from your central idea. What possible routes could you take to solve this problem or build this feature? What are the possible next steps in moving forward?
- Add Keywords – Add keywords to your branches and branch off of those branches. Feel free to break down each main branch into many subsets of smaller ones. This part of the exercise is about getting all the buzz words that are running through your head onto the mind map.
- Color Code and Organize – Now it's time to color code your mind map. Set a color to each branch and then find themes between words/ideas and color code those accordingly. This will allow your brain to view the map as a whole and quickly pick out which ideas relate to each other.
- Get Visual – Lastly, add images, designs, or comics to your mind map. These visuals allow you to think through your ideas in greater detail and allows you (or others viewing the mind map) to quickly get an idea of what the idea does and how it will work.