Branded creatives are the ammunition of recall and hence the correct usage determines the success in each medium. The last thing you can do is use them synonymously, for when was the last time a sniper replaced a tank and a grenade was switched with a knife? They all have their place, time, intention and objective. And when all of them work in effortless tandem, you have a brand for all seasons.
PRINT ADS & OUTDOOR
Objective: Credibility + Awareness
In 2023, full page print ads and outdoors are comparatively a rarer breed not because as rumoured it now lacks effectiveness but the rising media costs makes it difficult for mid size firms to see the instant impact on direct sales conversions when compared to digital advertising. And that’s the key, if you want them to purchase your denim immediately then you might want to focus primarily on buying banners on marketplaces but for that to work sustainably without the vicious cycle of lead generation ads, then that hoarding at the airport will come in handy big time. Print and outdoors are about scale and differentiation - if people are seeing you on a full front page newspaper then they psychologically assume you’re a brand with decent money and hence can be trusted more with the product and after sales service. Something a random logo they saw online can’t assure. And your ad should now build on this credibility base - use your creativity to tell your unique brand story and USP in the inimitable personality you want to own and would like to have a strong recall in.
Pro tip: Try to really customise (read not translation) the language of the creative to as regional as you can.
SOCIAL MEDIA POSTS
Objective: Engagement + Entertainment
If you want to have a strong social media presence, start by acknowledging the reason the community you want to acquire (read preserve) actually spends time there.
Will you yourself follow a brand page that only talks about their product features & shares corporate videos?
Don’t answer, just check how many brand profiles you follow & engage with. It’s your place to escape to an ocean of entertainment, not to be faced with a series of sales pitches. Empathise with this need & your content will find its right home on its own. Locate the diverse creative spots in pop culture and current affairs that intersect with your category and brand image. And don’t forget to accentuate the familiar elements of the reference for people to immediately connect the dots.
Objective: Leads + Conversions
Now coming to the most used creative brief these days - ‘Make me an ad that gets me leads.’ And ironically these are the simplest of them all.
Have a razor sharp focus on the offering where delight and most often than not… deal meets.
While your audience is scrolling through an article or a carousel of friend’s engagement pictures you will at best get 3 seconds to make an impression. Don’t try to be nuanced and layered, not the right medium for it. Be crisp and enviously clear about the takeaway. And try to answer: Why NOW “The Urgency of the offer” + Exclusive HOW “The reason your product stands out”
Objective: Experience + Vibe
What is more difficult than holding Gen Z’s attention online? Holding it and making them excited about a physical event. And hence you need two things to make that happen.
Make the creative for the fans of that property rather than dumbing it down to increase mass outreach; it’s counterproductive.
Comic Con globally is a great example - their creatives capture the vibe of the like minded attendees without trying to be everything. For once you penetrate that cult, they market the event for you be it Oktoberfest or Coachella. And then try to make it aesthetically breathtaking with a simple headline - they need to see why that physical event experience can’t be compared to watching it on a 5 inch screen later. If you are going to sell tickets to an immersive show of Monet’s paintings, buy the biggest digital outdoor you can, showcasing a 4K moving image of his oil painting Water Lilies, with the copy -’Spiritually Immersive Monet | Venue | Dates | Tickets On’ That’s all you need to do the trick.
Objective: Customisation + Deep Dive
Emailers work best when the customer has already signed up for newsletters or promotional mailers and not bombarded with cold spams which anyway is the fastest way to get blacklisted by all major email providers. What brands need to do is deep dive into your offerings and features they came to you for in the first place.
Here your content can be intelligent, data driven and at times even shockingly (pleasantly) customised for the receiver.
If you, as Deliveroo, a food delivery app already know this subscriber set really loves their pizza, you can get really creative with your messaging from Pizza puns to the Masterchef judges teaching you how to cook a margherita at home. One for sales, the other brand building. The trick is to make them feel ‘Damn, this one was especially made for me!’
In the end, at its core every brand creative wants to be seen. What as a creative person starting out in the industry you need to know is not confusing it with your personal need to be seen. In simple words, have the awareness to keep the art and artist apart. That itself will solve 80% of the problem.