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Creative Planning

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Digital Marketing - Study Notes:

Relative inflexibility of traditional communications

When thinking about creative planning, you need to bear in mind how inflexible they can be:

  • It’s calendar-bound.
  • There’s often a fixed start point.
  • It requires an upfront commitment to a schedule.
  • There's a fixed endpoint.

So your schedule may revolve around other elements. For example, if you want to book an advert during a slot of a popular television show, you’re tied to when that show runs.

The role of the media owner

In creative planning, you have to consider the influence of the media owner. They’re the ones who can dictate a number of things.

They can dictate:

  • Schedules: They can dictate what media is available when.
  • Budgetary commitment: Sometimes they can ask for huge commitment up front, in terms of financial commitment.
  • Campaign duration: They can also dictate how long your campaign lasts. You may want to run a campaign for two months, but it may be more financially beneficial for the publisher to have you run yours for one month and a competitor, or another brand from a completely different vertical run a campaign.

Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do about that as brands. A lot of the time, with traditional communications, the publisher dictates what happens.

Message design

Within creative planning, you need to consider message design because this can dictate the quality of the results. You may be able to recall some really bad campaigns. Although it's interesting that you can recall those campaigns, you're unlikely to buy those products. The worst thing is to have a mediocre campaign, because unlike a bad campaign where people can recall the brands, mediocre ones just disappear into the background.

A marketer has delivered a really strong brief that allows a creative agency or another internal department to get to grips with the message with the brand. They then deliver a thing of beauty that will lead people to purchasing that product, or lead them to reconsidering that brand in a whole new light.

And there are key elements of a creative strategy:

  • Idea: What’s the idea behind this campaign?
  • Copy: This is often overlooked, but it's a vital skill to be to write succinct copy that a consumer can consume very easily and understand immediately.
  • Visuals: We spend a lot of time as marketers tracing a brand look and feel. And that has to come across through visuals. And traditional media – such as TV, cinema, or outdoor – revolves around visual elements.

The best creative really pops and is eye-catching and is memorable.

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John Makin-Shaw

John Makin-Shaw is the Head of Marketing at Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance. For over 15 years he has been designing, launching, and managing customer propositions for some of the UK’s biggest brands.

Data protection regulations affect almost all aspects of digital marketing. Therefore, DMI has produced a short course on GDPR for all of our students. If you wish to learn more about GDPR, you can do so here:

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    Traditional Communications
    John Makin-Shaw
    Skills Expert

    This module introduces fundamental marketing principles and tools including the value proposition, the classic marketing mix, market research, the customer journey, communications planning, creative planning, media strategy, and amplifying brand performance. By referring to current and recent examples, it illustrates how digital technology and changing consumer behavior and lifestyles are altering the consumer decision-making process and disrupting traditional marketing models and strategies.