Prep Time:
Time to run:
1-3 hours

Creative Matrix template

A format for sparking new ideas at the intersections of distinct categories

Courtesy of our friends at

Use this template to generate many wide-ranging ideas in a short amount of time.

In a creative matrix grid, each cell represents the intersection of two disparate categories. It’s best to use the columns as categories related to people (e.g., personas, market segments, or problem statements) and the rows as categories for enabling solutions (e.g., technologies, environments, or policies).

The creative matrix template helps you:

  • Generate a lot of ideas in a short amount of time
  • Uncover areas of overlap across personas and categories
  • Get a deeper understanding of the problems you’re trying to solve
  • Identify possible solutions and next steps

How to use the creative matrix template

To run a successful creative matrix exercise, follow the below steps.

1. Define the overall topic for your brainstorm

Craft a single-sentence explanation of the topic you’re going to focus on during the brainstorming session. Make sure that everyone has context and a shared understanding of the central problem so that you can get the most out of the exercise.

2. Break out and brainstorm individually

At each intersection of high-level topics and themes on the left side of the matrix grid, identify how these themes and topics relate. Using Mural’s private mode, have everyone on your team generate as many ideas as they can across the whole matrix.

Note: It’s important to think carefully about how each cell represents an intersection of two ideas or priorities — if you get stuck, move on to the next cell.

For each topic across the matrix, evaluate the people & partnerships, places & spaces, digital interactions, surprises and delights, and other considerations a user or stakeholder may consider relevant. The template also includes a wildcard space to define an extra consideration not covered by the other topics.

3. Bring everyone back together and identify themes

Once everyone has had a chance to submit their feedback in the form of sticky notes inside the matrix, bring the group back together and look for common themes or ways to group ideas together.

Tips for using a creative matrix

To get the most out of your creative matrix template session, you should:

  • Facilitators should assign any pre-work necessary to give appropriate context, so the working session is as productive as possible
  • Use private mode to allow everyone to contribute their ideas individually and avoid groupthink, and use anonymous voting to determine the best next steps
  • Use color-coding and tags to help organize and analyze your feedback by theme, so that you can translate your work into action items

How to create a Creative Matrix template

Mural makes brainstorming and ideation more productive, in real-time or asynchronously

With Mural, you can work individually in a group setting with key features and tools that fuel creativity and collaborative problem-solving.
Sticky notes & text

Sticky notes & text

Add ideas, action items, and more as a sticky note or text box — then change the colors and cluster to identify patterns and new solutions.

Private mode

Private mode

Avoid groupthink and get authentic feedback by allowing collaborators to add content privately.

Asynchronous collaboration

Asynchronous collaboration

Innovate and collaborate effectively together without booking time on calendars.

Anonymous voting

Anonymous voting

Gain consensus and reach alignment quickly, either in real time or asynchronously.

Real-time collaboration

Real-time collaboration

Add more productivity and engagement to meetings and calls with features to guide collaboration.

Find & filter

Find & filter

Search and filter by color, last edited by, and more to unlock patterns and enhance visual collaboration.

Creative Matrix template frequently asked questions

What is a creative matrix?

How do you create a creative matrix?

LUMA Institute

Template by LUMA Institute


LUMA offers acclaimed in-person training, custom innovation programs, and a unique digital platform (LUMA Workplace), used by innovators in over 70 countries. Leading organizations around the globe rely on the LUMA System of Innovation — a practical, flexible, and scalable approach to Human-Centered Design.

Mural and LUMA System Logo Lockup

Mural is the only platform that offers both a shared workspace and training on the LUMA System™, a practical way to collaborate that anyone can learn and apply.