Who doesn’t love filling out forms and answering questions??!? Ok, a lot of people. But in the case of new creative for your brand, answering questions in a creative brief is an absolute necessity to ensure you get the finished product you’re envisioning in the timeframe that you desire.
Why? Well, as marketers, working with clients on creative projects is exciting and rewarding, but without a creative brief and discussion around brand goals and target audience BEFORE the work commences, the project could be off track before it even begins.
Below are 6 reasons the creative brief is essential:
1. Direction – You could tell us you want a new logo, but without a creative brief to tell us more about what your company’s values are, what your brand represents, and what your vision is, we could literally make 2,678 logos and still not nail the one you want. The creative brief allows you to point us in the right direction and ensure we start off on the right foot.
2. Thoughtfulness – Many companies know they need a new logo, ad, website, etc., but they don’t want to take the time to really think about the best way to make it happen. The creative brief asks thoughtful, pointed questions to assure you’re really thinking about what you want, why you want it, and how the upgrade will affect the company, the brand, and the bottom line. We put a lot of time into thinking through good creative, but we want to make sure that our thoughts are aligned with yours.
3. Timing – Many times, companies need their creative ASAP! Ok, let’s be serious, MOST times they do. Nonetheless, sometimes having more time to play with the creative can be an advantage to explore options and enhance creativity. Once the creative brief is filled out and we learn when final creative is needed, we can create a timeline, and set expectations for rounds of reviews and a final due date. The more complete the brief responses, the faster and closer we’ll get to your final creative by the deadlines.
4. Expectations – As mentioned before, the brief sets expectations for the due date of your final creative, but it also sets the expectations for the creative piece itself. The brief clearly states a roadmap for things like tone to include in the copy and imagery to include in the creative. When you tell us that you want your ad to be whimsical, funny, and bright, we know that creating a very serious black and white ad is not even close to what you’re looking for. Show us your inspiration, give us your ideas, no matter how unfinished they may be.
5. Accountability – Since the creative brief helps with timelines and design expectations, it also serves as a document that keeps both parties accountable. We are accountable to meet deadlines, and create stunning creative that wows by following your initial ask. You are accountable for following the timeline, and for telling us what you’re looking for to get us started.
6. Cost – The creative brief ensures both parties know exactly what they’re getting and when. Without the brief, there is a ton of guesswork into what the brand’s identity and goals are. If we guess wrong, it could cost you more money for us to re-do the creative. It makes sense to look at the creative brief as a cost-saving, strong creative producing document. A good brief aims to cut costs and promote efficiency. Get the best bang for your buck!
Best of luck, and happy briefing!