If your gut tells you that the creative execution is weak, then rethink the concept and direction.
Developing creative concepts that work through multiple communication channels is challenging. Even if the original concept was founded on customer insight, big data crunching, and support from the HiPPO (Highest Paid Person Opinion), realizing that you’re in a hole and going nowhere is tougher. People-to-people marketing is about making emotional connections and if it does not feel right, then most likely it’s the wrong creative execution.
Forcing a creative concept leads to a mediocre creative solution.
Bringing creative concepts to life is a messy process. There is no defined path, checklist, or process flow chart that leads to the solution. The creative process is more a series of explorations, like a hummingbird darting about, always adjusting altitude to gain a different perspective for the problem at hand.
Creative sessions start with a creative brief. The brief’s function is to educate the creative team about the marketing objective, product features and benefits, competitor work and positioning, and media strategy, with the purpose of inspiring the team to come up with new and different ideas.
The creative team huddles and begins sharing ideas. If the team is good and they have done their homework, they understand the brand and the covenant it shares with its customer base. This leads to on-target creative solutions that are memorable and motivating.
If the team is not plugged in, then it will pick out features and function messages and execute them in a way that’s okay but not great. The creative director then reviews the work and is overcome by an uncomfortable feeling that reverberates from head to toe, followed by questions like:
“Is this the best we can come up with?” “Haven’t we done this before?”
Strong creative leadership hits the “rethink” button before mediocre creative makes its way to the client for review.
Rethink is a safety valve that, when activated, takes the ego out of the creative process and provides the creative team members with a chance for redemption. This usually leads to better thought-out concepts and executions that are unique to the client business and provides the emotional stickiness for the bonding process with the intended audience.
Rethink also provides the necessary time and distance to review the communication objective with a clear head and subjective point-of-view.
Creative is not a one shot deal. Memorable advertising and effective marketing efforts are cast in a crucible of doubt, anxiety, and the desire to produce great work.