Have you got the right briefs?

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In a pitch process survey conducted by PRWeek and the PRCA, inadequate briefs, stolen ideas and 14-way pitches were some of the major concerns raised.

I too have shared concerns and over the years have suffered all sorts of interesting briefs; ‘I’ve had this idea but I’ll leave it to you creatives to ‘jazz it up’. Make sure it is their idea and DO NOT JAZZ, THEY HATE JAZZ.

‘Can it be similar to our last campaign and could you make it ‘fly on social media’. Different but similar. Hmmm. How do you benchmark flying?

‘Work up all the ideas and I’ll know it when I see it’. ARGH…..Do all the work and they’ll come back to the first idea.

The survey also reveals agencies are particularly critical of the briefs from clients, with nearly three-quarters saying they are not satisfied with the quality. Just over 10 per cent say they are satisfied with briefs, while 19 per cent gave no firm opinion.

Of the 71 per cent who are dissatisfied, 30 per cent say this is because briefs are “too broad”, while 41 per cent say briefs that do not include a stated budget are inadequate.

So, how can we get it right?  What is easier for the client and what works best for the agency? Here are some helpful tips to those writing tenders:

  1. Results:State in simple terms what you are hoping for as an end result
  2. Background: Provide objectives and audience insights
  3. Restrictions: Any issues or considerations the agency needs to take into account
  4. Expectations: How do you see the relationship working?
  5. Time frame: Timeframe of procurement process and contract length
  6. Budget: So very important, even if you don’t know this, a guideline is helpful

Finally, if you have a sense of humour and don’t offend easily, go to YouTube and search for ‘Graphic Designer vs Client’….remarkably, some of this occasionally rings true.

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