My Approach to Briefings
What I Want to Do:
There are three fundamental skills I wish to practice at my ideal job: Account Planning, Account Management, and Production.
The main objective of the brief is to give a project direction by communicating the strategy clearly through one voice. This includes synthesizing the information your team has sifted through, focusing on only the most important insights, and describing how they are applicable to the project. Someone who has an empathetic relationship with the client, the target, and the agency should oversee the brief.
Account Planning: Defining the right business problems and opportunities, then developing strategies to reach set goals has always been the most exciting part of my education. Understanding and bettering the relationship between the client and customer is what I live for. Account Management: Implementing a plan is worthless if the team doesn’t achieve the objective. Pulling together the right team of creative and analytical thinkers and keeping the project on task is of vital importance. I appreciate the responsibility of accountability. Production: Finally, I want to create conducive working environments for teams and give them the means to execute above and beyond expectations. The finished product is only as good as the producer and I intend to be a part of great finished products. What I Want Done: I want to be part of a community that actively strives to make brands better - not just through messaging but also through actions I want brands to start thinking about long-term sustainability and not just quarterly earnings. I want brands to understand that acting differently from the status quo isn’t so much a risk as it is an opportunity. I want brands to be trustworthy sources of information. I want brands to embrace a new media in a responsible way that adds value to their brand name. How I See This Happening: The ever-growing presence and instance access to digital communication is giving us more opportunity everyday to create and develop the tools necessary to help consumers make better decisions in their lives. How brands interact with customers through this channel, whether they are searching, shopping, reviewing, in need of customer service, community building, or looking for information or entertainment, will become increasingly more important. I would like to start off at an agency that is looking forward into the future of customer experience - a place that believes brands really can have a positive impact. I want to learn from an agency that understands what it means to listen to their customers and knows how to give them what they need. I want to learn from an agency that sees itself less as an advertising agency and more of an ideas agency. Ultimately, I want to work with a group of people that couples the power of brands with the pervasiveness of new media in order to solve the problems we all face.
Background Information: The brief is a tool used by creative teams to help guide their work. Its purpose is to create both opportunities and guidelines to what is possible. Technically briefs are no longer than a couple of pages and a briefing is usually no longer than an hour, but the “briefing process” to your team should start well before the brief is finalized and long after it is finished. Who We Are Talking To: It is always important to know who you are talking to, and without a creative brief the creative team would have to guess. It is also important to remember who you are writing the creative brief for – your creative team. Writers and designers are an eclectic group of workers that run the gamut of personality types. But most of them actually crave information – they just want the relevant information and they want to know why it is relevant. Anything else will appear boring and your work will become useless to them. Different creatives may also not all be able to reach the same conclusion the same way. This is why keeping an open dialogue between the planner and the creative team before, during, and after the creative briefing is vital. In fact, the planner should think of himself as part of the creative team and actively think of ways to demonstrate the key ideas of the brief. Why This Will Work: By approaching a brief empathizing with all three parties, you will more easily navigate and articulate the objectives of the client, the needs and emotions of the target audience, and the culture of the agency. Understanding and being guided by that empathy adds more value to a creative brief than any brief model ever can. How We Measure Success: A brief’s success can be measured in the final product. Not just how much sales improved or how much awareness was up, but by interacting with the finished creative pieces and finding the strategic structure within. The strategy should be able to shine through a great creative piece.