Based on the age-old “right brain/left brain” debate, it’s no surprise there can be some disconnect when it comes to marketers and creatives effectively communicating. As an integrated communications agency, we are always working to open paths of communication that span across specializations to produce the most impactful work.
Regardless of whether you work at or with an agency, or if you’re serving a role in-house for a company, here are some tips and tools from our creative team you can use today to start collaborating better internally.
Collaboration is key
With your marketing or communications team guiding messaging and objectives, along with your creative team’s vision and knowledge of how best to present it, collaboration is key to harness the full potential of your team’s skills. While creatives often get categorized in a box of their own, they’re truly an extension of your team. Don’t be afraid to talk through an idea at the start of a project and keep them in the loop as you’re considering the best approach.
Trust your team
Collaboration works best when experts bring their unique skills to the table. With that said, trust your creative team to handle the creative vision.
Although it may seem helpful to provide mockups or fully fleshed out creative concepts, this limits your designer’s ability to do what they do best. Creatives are trained in the best way to visually present information, so cutting them out of the process can ultimately lead to wasted time, exceeded budget and limited use of their capabilities.
Instead, try communicating your big-picture ideas through the objectives you are looking to accomplish or feelings you’re trying to elicit, or provide inspirational photos or a mood board. This gives your creative team both direction and the flexibility to interpret the best way to present the information provided.
A picture is worth a thousand words
It may be tempting to pack a design full of messaging but from a visual communicator’s standpoint, if you say too much, you risk saying nothing at all. In preparation for providing your creative team with a creative brief, distill your intentions down to a clear point – or your why – and consider if the copy you’re providing could be drilled down further to better reflect that intention.
Writing comprehensive creative briefs
A comprehensive creative brief is the first step to a well-thought-out creative request and communicating effectively with your creative team. Although every team is different, here’s a standard checklist of things to include when sending a request to your creative team:
- Project summary: Include any background context, project objectives, intended audience, brand guidelines and anything else that may inform the designer’s work.
- Timeline: Consider a timeline that allows room for internal and external reviews and revisions.
- List of deliverables and specs: What’s needed, at what sizes and in what quantity?
- Assets: Direct your designer to any images or files required to complete the project.
- Final, approved copy: Submitting a design request shouldn’t be a halfway mark between copy editing. Edits to copy can dramatically impact the design resulting in wasted time and longer turnaround times.
How else can you work better with the artists in your life? Using the same terminology is a great place to start. Explore our Creative Glossary that includes a comprehensive guide of creative terms, ranging from color, collateral, composition and layout, image file formats, logo types, photography, typography and web.
Lily Stotz is Associate Art Director at Franco. Connect with her on LinkedIn.