In the pre-digital days there really wasn’t a need for brands to produce more than the ads that went on traditional media. Now they need to produce an almost constant stream of fresh content to keep up with digital channels and social media.
For brands, the need for journalistic content stems from growing branded communities in social spaces. As brands and consumers engage in more personal conversations via social, consumers simply demand more from them.
A couple of years ago, Tom Wujec gave a TED talk about “The Marshmallow Challenge”. Teams are given 20 minutes to build the tallest structure possible that can support a marshmallow using only uncooked spaghetti, tape and string. Surprisingly, kindergartners consistently outperform MBA graduates in this challenge.
The kindergartners began building immediately. They adjusted what failed and capitalized on what worked. Working iteratively, their innovative results were a success because they spent less time thinking and more time doing. The MBA grads spent too much time planning. By the time they began construction they had no practical experience and their structures suffered.
Similarly, when tasking agencies to develop concepts, the client’s approach is to identify the single best solution before pulling the trigger on a given project. And in this business, it is only natural for clients to want more ideas, faster and for less money. More often, the turnaround for concepts is now days, not weeks. This leaves agencies little time to think. There is no time for strategy development, thorough research or well-planned mock-ups. This, coupled with the client’s urgency to get to the big idea, generates conflict.
How can we present the very best concept to our clients without time... Read more
The struggle between deadlines and creative started the day marketing and advertising was conceived. Unfortunately one side seems to always win. So it's how we handle these unavoidable pressures that differentiates the great from the weak. The truly great creatives have figured out a way to turn that tight deadline into a positive situation--they revel in it.
How? First let's talk about those dreamy, mythical deadlines that are weeks or even months away. Besides the natural tendency to procrastinate, the tendency to over analyze becomes the greater issue. The more time you have, the more you second guess what you're doing or the less willing you are to commit to a direction until you feel it is the ultimate solution. Or something could be great at first, but because you have all the time in the world you don't know when to say when. You keep building up and tearing down until you're left with something average or safe, not realizing that brilliance was staring you in the face days ago.
When you have a tight deadline, you're forced to immediately focus on the ask and quickly come up with an efficient game plan. Once the essence of the brief is understood,... Read more