Creating Concepts for Advertising

A well thought out concept is an INTEGRAL part of a successful marketing campaign. But what is the secret to a great campaign concept? Here at redhotblue, we like to call this – Intelligent Creativity

A great concept involves a great depth of investigation into your business and it’s goals. To learn a bit more about the importance of a GREAT concept, who better to talk to than our creative Director, Scott Turner? Over to you Scott.

Scott Turner – Creative Director at redhotblue

Firstly, I LOVE ADVERTISING! Let me rephrase that, I LOVE clever, well executed, considered advertising – it’s a place where intelligent thinking and purposeful creativity meet (the exact thinking behind redhotblue’s new tagline – Intelligent Creativity! 

A ‘concept’ is without a doubt the most important, and quite often, most misunderstood part of any advertising campaign. It’s a cliché, but the ad you see is the tip of the iceberg. The rationale and thinking behind a campaign concept is what supports the ad and it’s success.

A concept isn’t just a ‘good idea’ or ‘quirky image’ or any single part of an ad that’s ‘clever’. A successful campaign concept involves every part of the process in microscopic detail. It begins with an in-depth analysis of identifying why it’s needed, what it’s trying to do and who it’s for. Every part of the reasoning BEHIND a campaign is pulled apart and examined to ensure the why, what and who aligns, and is the best way to get the message across.

Once each element has been clearly identified and forms a solid groundwork, we then move onto the ‘where’, which involves a series of questions. Is it for social media, print, TV or a combination of the three or more? How long is the campaign intended to run for- a few weeks or up to 2 years? How frequently will ‘ads’ be produced? Is it a single message or a number of messages? Is it a constant message or will the message change and if so what is the ‘constant’ that ties it together? These questions are constantly cross referenced with the ‘why, what & who’ at every stage to make sure every element connects. Budget of course is a huge factor when developing a campaign. The time to create the ads and the costs involved with airtime or print costs etc. all need to be taken into consideration.

It is only at THIS STAGE, that the ‘idea’ is able to be worked on. Here, the messaging is developed and the design begins, guided & assessed by ALL the previous elements. I would estimate for every finished campaign there are at least 10-20 ‘great ideas’ that end up in the bin, because they do not answer one or more of the points previously raised by 100%.

True, clever and successful campaigns take hours and hours (or days and days) to develop, even if the final ad looks simple – the thinking behind it is what will drive the success. There is always a reason for every word, image, style or look we use in our campaigns here at redhotblue. At times the ad may not appeal to everyone, but that just means they’re not in the target demographic!

There are so many poor examples of ads out there that don’t consider all the factors in depth and have been produced because it ‘looks cool’, or may appear to be a good idea at surface level, or is created simply because it’s different and quirky. Without every aspect being put under a microscope and interrogated from every angle at every stage of it’s creation, the campaign concept ends up soulless, bland and as background noise.