Whether you’re agency or client-side, you’ll likely have written, read and questioned many briefs in your working life. Perhaps the infamous ‘Stop sign’ sketch rings a few bells? With working set-ups now different to the norm, as face-to-face meetings are being replaced by Teams or Zoom calls – the brief has become an even more important document to get right.

But where do you start with the perfect creative brief? And who should be writing and reviewing it? Our Account Manager, Amy Jackson, explains more.

Great projects start with great briefs 

A creative brief clearly details the client’s objectives for the work they would like to take place, and acts as a guide for the whole team involved in the design process ahead.  The briefs should be fully agreed and signed off before the design process begins.

The importance of a detailed and correct brief can often be undervalued, yet it is one of the most important parts of the creative process when it comes to meeting and surpassing client expectations for a project.

Every member of the team, from Account Managers to Creative Directors, will refer back to the brief at every stage of the creative process.  The team will continually work to ensure the goals outlined in the document are met, so making sure these wants and needs are clear from the start is incredibly important.

What should be included in a creative brief?

Focus on exactly what you would like to achieve before you begin the project and communicate that to the team.

Think about the overall objective and focus of the piece.  Would you like to enhance your brand awareness? Is this an informative piece, or something that is focused entirely on generating sales?  Consider the key message you would like to express.

The goal you specify will drive the creative.

Who are you targeting? Your audience is a significant part of the brief. Using the data at your disposal, think objectively about what they would like, not necessarily your own personal views or preferences. Share as much data as you can regarding the demographic of your product and the finished piece will be created with them in mind.

Don’t forget to include deadlines for the project, and any budget information for the work. There’s no point your agency suggesting something that is totally out of reach, so a budget envelope is always best to be disclosed.

Remember…The brief is what the job should do, not how 

A good brief should always contain insights that light up the creative team. It will work to inform them about how you would like the finished product to look. A talented studio (much like the one at Pace) will use the document to come up with a piece of work they know answers everything you would like to achieve.

They are the experts in this – trust them!

Remember, you can include examples to show what you may have in mind, but don’t use your brief to tie the hands of the people executing it. Describe the how and the why, but don’t prescribe the how.

A brief in brief 

In summary, give your team as much information as you can. Treat each individual brief as its own separate project and include as much detail as possible.

Don’t forget your target audience and consider how you will measure your success.

Then hand it over and watch the magic happen!

Here at Pace, we’re open for business as normal so if you fancy a chat about your next brief, get in touch.