Not everyone that provides creative direction is good at providing it. That situation is especially challenging is when the person providing the direction is a client. Here’s a potential path to helping get you to good work when you get bad creative direction.
Creative strategy exists to direct and inspire the creative teams in the development of ideas that will address specific marketing needs through communications. That’s exactly why the tactical assignment and back-ground information should be kept separate.
In the wrong hands, a Creative Brief can be a weapon of mass destruction causing creative that wreaks havoc on an unsuspecting population of consumers. And forever leading to advertising that is skipped over. That’s why it’s so important to get it right.
If writing a creative strategy is not the strong suit of your team, have heart. I was once a 98-pound weakling in this area and now I can write Creative Briefs with the best of them. It’s not magic: it helps to have the right tools and a little guidance. That’s where I come in.
Here are four reasons why a Creative Brief should be… brief. Brevity forces decisions, means you focus on what’s most important, means the Creative Brief is more likely to get used, and says there’s a better chance you’ve found something inspirational.
Smaller brands can use communications to beat bigger brands by having more insightful creative strategies, a stronger enterprise-wide understanding of the strategic direction behind the creative, and work that is more about the idea than whether the executional elements are in place.
Too often the creative discipline forgets to share that it’s a discipline, creating the impression that creative is just words and pictures that anyone in the company can come up with it. When in fact creative work is the communications solution to a marketing situation, need or challenge that the company has.
Sometimes our initial reaction when reviewing creative is – “I don’t like it.” Before rejecting the work, ask these questions to help determine if that’s really the right decision.
In some industries, commandments seem to have been written about what communications should look and act like. The same colors are used, same words, same images. That creates an opportunity for a brand to separate itself and be a powerful and successful alternative.
When you show creative work around the office, few are thinking of the importance of the work being breakthrough, benefit-oriented, interesting, rewarding, or memorable. They’re just going to try to help you out by finding something “wrong.”
Providing feedback on creative is a really important part of our jobs. Because it’s not something a manager does every day, it’s a skill that for many may not be as strong as others. These thoughts may guide greater success. And better work.