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IHAVEANIDEA.ORG > ask jancy >  My CD wants on-strategy but boring work, but I want ‘cool’ stuff

My CD wants on-strategy but boring work, but I want ‘cool’ stuff


i think my cd & strat planner are over-analyzing ad ideas. they always reject our team’s ‘cool’ ideas, and go for the bland, safe stuff. i have to admit they r on strategy, and the cool stuff are somewhat ‘streched’. anyway, judging from the output, i find they’re boring & still think the cool stuff is better. at least different from other ads.
What are the signs when u’re over-analyzing an idea and should stop?
How far can you stretch a proposition from a strat planner?

intro My CD wants on strategy but boring work, but I want cool stuffBoth ends of the spectrum are wrong—communication that’s on strategy but boring won’t do the brand any good. It will be invisible to consumers. “Cool” work that isn’t strategically smart is no help either. It might get noticed but without a solid story for the brand it’s also a waste of money. How can you tell when you’ve strayed too far from the strategy? If you aren’t telling the consumer about the single thing agreed to as most compelling for the brand, you’re off strategy. It’s pretty easy to spot work that simply isn’t sticking to the story. However there are times when an idea may bubble up that trumps the strategy. If the off-strategy idea is so big and so motivating, it can pay to present it to clients anyway—along with work that shows the strategy was delivered. Ad history is full of winning off-strategy stories. You lose though if all you ever deliver is off strategy. That shows either you don’t understand what a strategy is, or you aren’t disciplined enough to bear down on it and focus on the sweet spot that the team has identified. It’s a common problem for young teams that truly don’t yet get strategic thinking.

It sounds like you’re in the wrong place if only bland work is being approved internally and you aren’t learning how to work to a strategy. This may be the bigger point.

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About Jancy

'Jancy' is Janet Kestin and Nancy Vonk, Co-Founders of Swim, a unique “creative leadership training lab for advertising creatives and marketers.” Prior to Swim, Jancy was globally renowned as the Co-Chief Creative Officers of Ogilvy & Mather Toronto, a position they held for thirteen of the twenty years they were a creative duo at the agency. Over the years they've racked up Cannes Lions, Clios, One Show pencils and CA credits, and have lead their shop to two Cannes Lions Grand Prix and a Grand Clio. They've judged CA, Cannes, D&AD, the One Show, the Clios and other prestigious award shows. Creativity named them two of the top 50 creative people of 2008. Known for their outspoken, no-bullshit style and a passion for mentoring juniors, they're ready to give you advice if you're ready to take it.

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