Brands are always looking out for creative ideas that they can use for their brand. With more innovations and technology being available for creating content, some clients jump at the chance to commission new outputs to creatives. But are they always effective?
At GetCraft’s Manila Creators Meetup last July 31, experts discussed the importance of marketing objectives over formats when coming up with creative campaigns. These seasoned advertising professionals highlighted the best practices that will help creators foster creativity and come up with outstanding executions, regardless of the medium.
The panelists emphasized focusing on marketing objectives over the medium or platform is what matters. They also went on to share their insights and experiences in working on creative campaigns and how to deal with brand stories and new technology.
More than the technology available to create new types of content, it’s the stories that really matter.
Manny Gonzales, strategy director of Ogilvy Philippines, pointed out that many clients get so enamored with new technology, but get confused when the material doesn’t perform well. Just because there are new outputs that can be commissioned doesn’t mean a brand has to jump into it right away.
Gonzales emphasized the importance of knowing what consumers need. How can creatives understand what it is? He said it can be done by “answering in action words.”
Sometimes, creatives are too quick to answer the consumers’ problems with the first solution that comes to mind. For marketers, it’s usually nouns, like an object or product. They forget to see how important it is to understand what it is that they actually need, which is the action required.
This can be likened to creatives prioritizing execution over concepts. It can be tempting to utilize new innovations when they come up, but will they actually serve a purpose and help you tell your story?
Gonzales said that human-centered design thinking, which involves getting to the root of the consumers’ problems, is what will make campaigns matter. Sometimes, creatives lose sight of this. Answering in action words to solve problems is what moves campaigns forward, not new nouns like technologies or types of content.
This kind of creative thinking will positively impact the business, produce resonant ideas, and make the brand relevant. As Gonzales pointed out, putting the consumers’ needs first allows creatives to come up with meaningful and valuable campaigns.
Presenting the perfect pitch is the next step to winning the campaign. But is a perfect pitch really possible?
Herbert Hernandez, creative partner of GIGIL, outlined some misconceptions about creative campaigns. He began by saying that there’s no perfect medium for every campaign, but creatives should maximize those that work best for their target audience.
He added that there’s also no perfect budget for campaigns. Some clients have very little and yet ask for too much. Hernandez mentioned that some of the campaigns they ran for clients had very limited budget, but they managed to pull off the concepts they pitched.
Another thing he noted was that there are no perfect creatives. Learning to collaborate is key. Working with creatives who are better than you can be intimidating, but he says it’s one of the ways you can get better at your craft.
Hernandez noted that sometimes, creatives tend to focus on the weaknesses that they start sabotaging themselves from creating something great. In order to prevent this, it’s important to learn from more experienced creatives to show you that you are also capable of giving birth to outstanding campaigns.
He also emphasized that there’s no perfect time to run a creative campaign. He cited an instance where they rode off the back of a viral post on local social media by posting something related to the topic for a client. Ideation to execution transpired in less than an hour and they were able to get the attention of consumers organically through it.
Sometimes, ideas simply come to creatives. When the timeline permits, getting those ideas out there while the timing is right will definitely help brands get the boost that they need, as long as the messaging is correct.
When asked about clients asking for viral posts, Gonzales and Hernandez agreed that going viral should not be the goal. Gonzales said that “viral” is not a type of material. Instead, it’s a reaction that can only come from the audience. There’s no way to predict whether your content will go viral, so it’s best to focus on the story instead.
Regarding project management challenges, they both echoed the importance of creatives being agile. Hernandez mentioned working on tight timelines, so project management can be difficult for their boutique agency. Gonzales said that staying hands-on when working on campaigns is always better.
When asked about brainstorming with non-creatives, Gonzales shared that employing techniques to encourage creative thinking will help. He mentioned opposite thinking, or flipping the objectives of a campaign to help non-creatives see the possibilities.
Creative campaigns should always put the messaging first, with the technology to follow later. It will always go back to how the marketing objectives can be achieved. And it won’t always require the latest innovations to make it possible.
For more articles about how to advance your career as a creative, visit the Crafters.