The Art of the Creative Brief

The creative brief is essential to what I do. Creating effective marketing campaigns on demand is hard. There are unquestionably tried and true frameworks that increase the probability of your success, but producing epic, lead generating results come from creative edges.

This is why you need to learn the art of the creative brief.

Here are my quick notes.

Purpose of a Brief

To solve a problem and provide rules of engagement.

Understand the Target

Do some research on the current traffic or interview the client to gain a firm grip on who their customer is and what gets their attention.

Understand Your Capabilities

Know what you and your team are good at and then build strategies that leverage your strengths. It’s okay to try new things, but don’t kick past your coverage.

Highlight Past Lessons/Failures

Clients are looking for experience. Give them examples of things that you know have worked and failed in the past, given similar objectives. Be comfortable challenging clients.

Determine the Tactics for Maximum Effectiveness

Breakdown the strategy into bite-size tactics so that there’s a clear plan of action, steps to be taken, and incremental wins and losses to be measured.

Define Success

Every objective should have a clear picture of what success looks like. I’m a big fan of OKRs (Objectives and Key Results) as the framework for this part of the briefing process. It’s clear, concise, and the measurements for success are built into the OKR.

It has also worked for Google and several other highly successful super performing organizations. If you want to learn more about OKRs read about John Doerr’s gift to Google’s founders.

Make it Interesting So People Pay Attention

More important than anything else, it’s got to get read.

Make your briefings as short, interesting and visual as possible. Learn the art of storytelling and make you brief pull in the client and help them see the vision that has you so excited.

Do you use creative briefs? What are your tips?

Feel free to download and use my creative brief template.

photo credit: Photo by Dmitry Ratushny on Unsplash