Creative, joined-up thinking

We need to think creatively…

Last week we talked a lot about whether a webinar is the right channel for you and your brand. If you answered yes to the “do we have the right content” question, then it is a good idea to think about how we get the best value out of the event itself. To begin we have to recognise that a webinar isn’t an event, well it is an event, but we have to think about it as a campaign. Clear so far? No, I thought not! Let me explain with a quote from some clever marketing guys:

“Content is king but, engagement is the queen and the lady rules the house”

If we want to engage in a meaningful way then we need to take more than one opportunity to talk to our audience and tell them our message. And we need to think about using all of our different marketing channels so we don’t miss anyone out

There is a really useful model we have used in the event industry for years. It has probably survived because it is so simple. Pre. At. Post. Sadly it doesn’t make a great acronym!

It’s obvious stuff but often overlooked. It’s most effective when we use it to balance activity and look at how the different sections are connected. So, it’s not just a question of putting stuff in the boxes. It’s about looking at how activities connect to each other. When you sketch out your plan ask two simple questions:

  1. Are we doing enough in each of the different phases?
  2. Are we connecting up the different activities so people hear our message more than once?

But even if we have a perfect campaign plan it all goes to pot if we don’t execute it with a bit of creative thought. The most common mistake is that people think the webinar is the message. We like to put a different lens on it. Come to our webinar is a call to action. The topic creates the message. Thinking like this means we can apply more creative thought to headlines, teasers, images or even using colour and typography to create an identity for the topic. This helps as there are only so many different ways of saying join our webinar!

We know marketers and communication guys think like this, you get it. However, our job is often to ensure that everyone is thinking the same.

I always loved the quote from Mr Einstein “creativity is catching – pass it on”. Right now in the rush to communicate for survival and recovery, it is easy to settle for less creativity. In the long term that’s bad as an investment in creativity is good for your brand. If you need a bit of inspiration just Google “best Economist adverts”. They are the masters of using a topic to drive clever creativity. You don’t have to be as smart as The Economist, but right now, there are probably more webinars running each hour than trains, so standing out is hard and requires a big effort.

Here’s our quick list of do’s and don’ts to help.

  • Don’t be afraid to use emotive and clever language 
  • Don’t be afraid to use challenging images and language – if appropriate obvs!
  • Don’t be afraid to use your existing and new channels in different ways
  • Do have a creative process and workshop/brainstorm the topic and campaign
  • Do reflect the best bits of your brand from your values to your colour palette
  • Do think about how you elevate the topic and give it an identity
  • Do keep your messages super simple and clear (unlike some we could mention)
  • Do think about how you slowly release messages so they create intrigue

Tim Lewis,
lead consultant,
3Fox brand and marketing

Tim has worked for 25 years in various top-flight brands and creative agencies and has broad experience of the property sector, place and destination branding, cultural and heritage, professional services and not-for-profit. His job at 3Fox is to create brand and marketing strategies for our network of clients.