I gave a presentation to the department I work within a couple of weeks ago. It was based on a presentation I saw ages ago, at a night hosted by the wonderful She Says.
The presentation summarised many of the key questions we should all ask when we are solving a communications problem. If we are writing a brief or brainstorming, or assessing creative work, these are quite helpful questions. I’m sure there are others, and that I have forgotten the original points made in the presentation I saw back in London. If you can think of any others, please do let me know.
Some of my notes about the things are:
- What would a fan say? i.e. What do people who love the product/service say about it? This is often quite different from what the client thinks is great about their brand.
- What is the elephant in the room? Is there something we don’t want to mention? This can help when a brand is in some kind of trouble – mentioning it can make you seem more human.
- In what ways is the thing currently social? i.e. is there a way that people are sharing or talking about this that you – as the agency/brand – can make more of – but more importantly, how you can help your fans make more of it?
- Is the thing being used for another purpose than originally intended? Fairly self explanatory – but watch out – what did Mentos and Coke achieve?
- What can we learn from the category? This is do’s and don’ts, don’t you know? I mean like for financial services not having loads of stagey stock photos of business people and so forth…
- What would life be like without it? I think this is quite an interesting one which really helps you recognise whether it’s different enough from other products/services/brands and think about a direction you could take it in to make it more important and useful to people.
- Is the thing being paired with other things? i.e. are there potential linkups and partnerships that your audiences really like?
- What’s the bleedin’ obvious? I put this in because so often we try to think of something really clever that no one will ever have thought of but sometimes the answer is staring you straight in the face.
So anyway, those are my 7 things. Can we make it ten?