Friday, July 24, 2009
Design with purpose
I had a great meeting with Nic Wildeman of Lionfish Creative this morning. Check out their Web site and you’ll see that they’re very good at creative and design – their work is fresh and engaging, it “makes you look.”
But what I particularly liked about Nic and Lionfish is their perspective on design, summed neatly by Nic’s comment below:
“The best creative work in marketing must serve a client's business purpose, else it is art for art's sake, and that is not our business.”
These are exactly the words you want coming from your brand’s creative shop. Every facet of your execution – including strategy, copy, offer and design – needs to align with your purpose and objectives. Too many creative resources – both in-house and via agencies – focus on creative that wins industry awards, which is nice for the agency walls but not as helpful for the client’s sales goals and bottom line.
But the blame here isn’t always with the creative shop, but too often also with the client. When you fill out the creative brief, do you describe how you want the ad to look? Sure. Do you also describe the brand’s revenue or market share objectives, and how the creative needs to align to and deliver those results? Not always.
Your execution is as good as its weakest component. Don’t let it be the creative (and don’t always blame the agency or designers when it is).
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