Continuing to do the same thing and expecting different results has often been cited as the definition of stupidity. It seems obvious – to make change means doing something different, yet the reality is that much of what we are prepared to do is way more subtle. We stay in our Comfort Zone and do the familiar. Maybe it’s the fear of the unknown, a lack of confidence or simply inertia that keeps our feet firmly planted.
It’s easier to do the same as before, regardless of effectiveness. It’s tougher to challenge convention and can seem risky to seek more significant opportunities. Why is that so?
Creativity is at the nub of all innovation and, in business, predominantly seen in how brands present and communicate. Creative ideas developed from a good strategy can be genius. But how do you recognise genius? The answer starts with developing a platform that provides definitions and tools to curate. Then, with framework in place, step away and let the creators do what they do best.
AMBA has been blessed by working with many sensational Creative Directors and Creative Leads over the past few decades. Some have been young, some not so. Some have been from broad-based communication backgrounds, others from a much narrower focus. For some, we were a stepping stone as their careers soared (we watch with pride), for others we were a part of a more balanced (and relaxed) life. The insight – you can’t judge a book by its cover (yet we all do…).
Strategy is key. “Tell them it’s a good product and they should buy some” doesn’t cut it in today’s world (we once had a client who proudly presented this as their advertising proposition). A good strategy comes from insights that already surround you. (Talk to us about how we can help you do that).
Finding good creative is a complex and challenging process, especially for those on the client side. If you are on the hunt, here are a few tips:
- Create vs Execute. There is a notable difference between those who can start with a completely blank page and those who develop on an existing concept/format. Genius is everywhere, but the kind of greatness that shifts the dial comes from fresh thinking.
- Engaged in business. While there is no need to understand the intimate details of your business, there must be an openness to embracing the issues and challenges of your current situation. The perfect world is the goal, not the present reality.
- Passionate. Having a point-of-view and be willing to express it. Nothing will kill outcomes faster than having someone always agree with you. Push-back, constructive debate and effective resolution deliver stronger work.
- Collaborative. Marketing is a complex beast, best played as a team sport. Collaboration is a two-way street.
- Supportive environments. Sticking your neck out isn’t always fun, especially if there is a chance of a chop. Genius grows in environments that support and nurture creative thinking, which is why agencies have been the traditional home of big ideas. In this more contemporary world, there are other ways to align directions and manage outcomes. The key to success hasn’t changed.
With distributed workforces, the option of internal vs external teams, onshore vs offshore, not to mention IP ownership and balancing risk vs reward – there are more ways to tangent than ever before. (Can we share more?)
Creativity drives likeability. History favours the brave.