Ever build a home without blueprints, start a project without supplies or take a trip without a map? If you would never do those things, we understand. That’s exactly why we feel that all projects should start with a plan. Marketing is no different. What is known in marketing circles as a creative brief is really an essential for your marketing efforts.
A creative brief defines your goals, main competitors, target demographics, company personality and unique qualities. Identifying this information sets the tone for your project and gives clarity in the direction of creative work. Investing in the creative brief upfront to establish needs, benefits, and deliverables saves you time and money while setting expectations for all parties involved. To fully understand your company’s needs, we need to understand you fully.
Below are examples of common questions in creative briefs and explanations of what type of information your marketing partner is hoping to see.
1 – What are the goals of your current logo/marketing efforts? And how do they help you?
Goals vary by business but might include increased brand awareness, finding employees, driving nonprofit membership, or boosting sales.
2- What is working and not working in your current logo/marketing materials/website?
Explain successes you’ve seen with your existing marketing materials and why you are seeking to change them. If this is your first time creating marketing materials of any kind, what are features you are hoping to see or companies you are hoping to emulate?
3- Who are your main competitors?
This one is pretty self-explanatory but helps your marketing partner gauge what you’re “up against” and provide strategies that will allow you to compete against them successfully.
4- Who are your target demographics, and why?
In business school, these are often called “personas.” Some companies even assign funny monikers to them. For instance, a clothing retailer might have, “Molly Mother is a stay-at-home mom in her 30s with 2+ kids. Her household income is greater than $120k, and her children attend private school. She looks for value when buying clothes for her family, and she is most likely to be interested in XYZ products.
Of course, you do not have to get this in-depth. However, it is helpful for your marketing partner to know where your ideal client lives, why they would be interested in your product, and any challenges you might have in selling to them.
5- How are you different from your competitors? (what is unique to you?) And how do your target demographics benefit from these features?
This is called your “unique value proposition.” At its most basic, it is why your potential clients would choose you and benefit from working with or purchasing from you over your competitors.
6- What is the desired personality you wish to portray in your brand clearly?
If your brand were a person, how would you describe them? Are they bubbly and outgoing? Calm and caring? Reserved and imposing? Do they make you think of bright colors or dark colors? How do they make you feel?
It might feel strange to think of your business in this way, but doing so allows you to examine how you want your customers to feel when they think of your business and helps craft your overall brand strategy.
7- Do you have any specific imagery in mind that you wish to use in your marketing materials?
This is your chance to express your hopes for your logo, website, and printed materials. It’s also an excellent place to point out what you don’t like. For instance, you could be an artist but hate the idea of using a paintbrush in your logo. This is also an excellent spot to do a “brain dump”. Write down all the images that come to mind for you when thinking about your business.
8- Inspiration: Are there any companies/organizations that inspire you from a messaging or creative standpoint? Please provide links or images.
Let your marketing partner see what’s out there that you love. Then, they can take the best of elements and repurpose them for your brand.
9- Do you have any color preferences or existing brand colors you wish to continue using? Conversely, do you have any colors you do not want to use?
Write down specifics or tell your marketing partner you’re looking for ideas from them.
10- Please fill in the statement below as best you can. *Tip, use the answers you provided in the questionnaire.
Brand Positioning Statement Template:
This is a clear statement of the target audience, brand, business category, point of difference, and reason to believe. Example: For (target audience), (brand) is the (category) that is the (point of difference) so they can (end benefit) because (reasons to believe).
This one can feel really intimidating for businesses, but it’s not about perfection here. Your marketing partner is looking for a straightforward statement about your brand. You can worry about wordsmithing it later.
Here’s an example of a straightforward statement:
For busy working moms, Callie’s Food Delivery is the dinner delivery service they can always trust to be healthy and hot. So they can stop worrying about what they are feeding their kids tonight and instead enjoy family dinner together.
Are you ready to get clear on your company’s branding and messaging? If so, give Engaged Marketing Co a call to get started today!