How to write a great creative brief
18 October 2011
Now I am not the world’s most creative person but I know what I like. At some point in the event planning process, you are going to need the services of a graphic designer, a marketing agency for a major event or your own in-house team to design whole concepts, colours schemes, a look, promotional material and web sites. Most of us however will probably just need to brief a designer.
As with everything in the events world the more you think about exactly what it is you are looking for the easier it is for somebody else to take your ideas and turn them into visuals. Some of us only like what we like, so as long as the designer provides us with designs, concepts and images that fit our tastes, we’ll get on famously. The problem here is your ‘creative expert’ doesn’t get a chance to use their talent to explore other, possibly better options. Because you are not going to like them: however good they maybe. The reverse I guess also true: give a designer a completely opened ended brief and you may find the whole process can take a long time, as design after design, doesn’t quite do it for you. The trick is of cause is to let your designer know which parts of the design you do like. For some types of organisations they like this approach, as something really different could come out of the whole process. Please do bear in mind that the associated ‘design time’ costs can get quite expensive; if you don’t keep a check on the figures.
So how do you brief a designer and get what you want?
The brief should cover the following:
· Description of task - complete description of design / copywriting task and the promotional media being used i.e. website, brochure, poster, direct mail campaign.
· Event background - any important information about the ‘host’, what they do, how they do it as well as any historical data about previous events is useful.
· The audience - you must provide them with a very clear idea of the target audience – who are they, what they do / like, what they might want to see / read about so your designer can consider what sort of images will excite / interest them.
· Purpose - what is the principal purpose of the poster, email and web site? The design needs to reflect what you want the reader to do.
· Timeline - great design and copy takes time to produce. There will be first, second, third…drafts so do ensure you allow plenty of time for the designers to get it right.
It is really important you think about what will be the best design, copy and messaging for your event - if you get this right, people will notice it, act on it and everyone will be happy.
My last blog post – Audience Participation - They’ll hate it – really?
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