Friday, 16 November 2012

Creative Strategy: Planning and Development

Advertising message is one of the most important components of an integrated marketing communications program. While the basic function of the advertising message is to communicate information, it is also a source of entertainment, motivation, fascination, fantasy,and sometimes irritation.

The importance of creativity in advertising

  • From the marketer's perspective, the advertising message is a way to tell consumers how the product or service can solve a problem or help satisfy desires or achieve goals
  • Advertising can also be used to create images or associations and position a brand in the consumer's mind as well as transform the experience of buying and/or using a product or service

 Many consumers who have never driven or even ridden in a BMW perceive it as "the ultimate driving machine".


Underlying all these messages, however are a creative strategy that determines what the advertising message will say or communicate and creative tactics for how the message strategy will be executed.


Many people feel good about sending Hallmark greeting cards because they have internalized the company's advertising theme, "when you care enough to send the very best".


Planning Creative Strategy

The Creative Challenge

The job of creative team is challenging because every marketing situation is different and each campaign or advertising may require a different creative approach. Numerous guidelines have been developed for creating effective advertising, but there is no magic formula. 
Absolut Vodka creates ads specifically for the publications in which they appear

Taking Creative Risks

 

Vodafone takes more of a creative risk with its new ads
Many creative people follow proven formulas when creating ads because they are safe. Clients often feel uncomfortable with advertising that is too difficult. Many creative people say it is important for clients to take some risks if they want breakthrough advertising that gets noticed. One agency that has been successful in getting its clients to take risks is Wieden & Kennedy , best known for its excellent creative work for companies such as Nike, Microsoft, and ESPN

Creative Personnel

The image of the creative advertising person perpetuated in novels, movies, and TV shows is often one of a freewheeling, freethinking, eccentric personality. The educational background of creative personnel is often in non-business areas such as art, literature, music, humanities, or journalism, so their interests and perspectives tend to differ from those of mangers with a business education or background. 

The Creative Process

Graham Wallas's four step approach of Creative Process:
  • Preparation - Gathering background information needed to solve the problem through research and study 
  • Incubation - Getting away and letting ideas develop
  • Illumination - Seeing the light or solution
  • Verification - Refining and polishing the idea and seeing if it is an appropriate solution

Account Planning

To facilitate the creative process, many agencies now use account planning, which is a process that involves conducting research and gathering all relevant information about a client's product or service, brand , and consumers in the target audience.

Inputs to the Creative Process: Preparation, Incubation, Illumination

  • Background research
  • Product/Service-specific research
  • Qualitative research input

Advertising Industry Publications are excellent sources of information on market trends

Inputs to the Creative process: Verification, Revision

At this stage of the process, the creative team is attempting to find the best creative approach or execution style before moving ahead with the campaign themes and going into actual production of the ad. 

Creative Strategy Development

Advertising Campaigns

Most ads are part of a series of messages that make up an IMC  or advertising campaign, which is a set of interrelated and coordinated marketing communication activities that center on a single theme or idea that appears in a different media across a specified time period.
A campaign theme should be a strong idea , as it is the central message that will be communicated in all the advertising and other promotional activities.


Copy Platform

The written copy platform specifies the basic elements of the creative strategy. Different agencies may call this document a creative platform or work plan, creative brief, creative blueprint, or creative contract

Copy Platform Outline



 The Search for the Major Selling Idea

An important part of the creative strategy is determining the central theme that will become the major selling idea of the ad campaign. 
Docomo's Ads featuring Ranbir Kapoor emphasizing on paying what you use is a major selling idea
Several approaches can guide the creative team's search for a major selling idea and offer solutions for developing effective advertising.Some of the best known approaches are:
  • Using a unique selling proposition
  • Creating a brand image
  • Finding the inherent drama
  • Positioning


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