The brief or briefing is the way of communicating between client and agency or agency and supplier have been protocolized to try to ensure that there is always the necessary information for a project, advertising or communication campaign to go ahead as it was originally intended. To achieve this, the most common document is known by its name in English as a brief or briefing.
The brief or briefing is an informative document that contains the essential information to start planning or executing a project. It is a very common document in the world of advertising and communication, although it is also seen in other types of sectors, in which the client, through this document, describes their needs and desires to carry out a project to an agency or provider.
How to make a good brief or briefing?
The key to this document is not only to make it, but to make it well. If we succeed, our suppliers will thank us, working with them will be more efficient and results will be faster and better. On the contrary, the consequences of doing a bad briefing can lead to delay the execution times of the campaign or the project, multiply the working hours and burn the supplier. It must be borne in mind that the briefing serves as a starting point document to start working and, therefore, if it is not correctly formulated, it will cause hours and effort to be spent in a line of work that is really not the appropriate one. To avoid these problems, below we are going to describe the content necessary to make a good briefing.
1. Objective of the marketing campaign or project
In the first place, it is essential to convey the objective of the campaign to be able to draw up an adequate strategy that allows them to comply with them. This point significantly conditions the approach, so it is essential that it is clearly specified.
2. Target audience of the briefing
The public to whom the campaign or project is intended is also very important since it can influence the language, style or design of the same to have some characteristics or others. It will also influence the choice of channels and media, in case it is an advertising campaign or related to content, so being clear about this aspect is essential and one of the most important points along with the objectives.
3. Company description
Including a brief description of the company in the briefing is very useful to know the focus and values of the same. Details that are very important when making a creative proposal or in which communication and design play an important role.
4. Specific needs
Sometimes, the client is already clear about some of the characteristics or orientation of the project to be launched. If so, the client must specify it in the briefing so that the supplier takes it into account when making its proposal or executing the project.
The “Key Performance Indicators”, commonly known as KPIs, help measure the effectiveness of the work done. Sometimes projects are developed in order to achieve specific objectives. For example, develop an advertising campaign with which to generate X thousand euros in sales or get X number of visits. When those objectives can be measured with a clear indicator and are within the client’s expectations, they should be included in this briefing.
6. Terms and conditions
Occasionally it may happen that, due to the client’s industry or sector, its history, values, etc. there are some limitations or conditions in the development of the project. If the provider does not know them or does not have to know them, it is important to put them in writing. In this way we will ensure that the proposal we receive will be in line with what we are looking for.
7. Budget estimate
In case there is already a defined budget for the project, it is important to reflect it so that the proposal is adapted to what the client can pay. However, it is not essential since many times what is sought is to have different proposals with their corresponding budget.
Of course, when evaluating a project it is very important to take into account what the execution deadlines are. This information enables the provider to better assess the resources you will need and facilitates your planning and organization.
A good briefing should have these elements:
- Follow a logical order, from the most general to the most particular.
- Include enough information so that the agency can target its campaign, but present it in a summary and concise way.
- Be easily understandable for all team members, avoiding technicalities typical of the company’s sector.
- Make it very clear what you are trying to achieve, if possible, with a definition of SMART objectives (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and with deadlines).
We can distinguish different types of briefings as:
- Business briefing: this document focuses on the current and historical situation of the company and the business objectives it seeks to achieve.
- Marketing briefing: aimed at summarizing the information about a specific marketing action that you want to start.
- Advertising briefing: this type of briefing includes the necessary details to launch an advertising campaign.
- Briefing creativo: generalmente diseñado a partir del briefing publicitario, incluye los detalles concretos a nivel gráfico y de diseño, por ejemplo, guías de estilo o formatos de entrega.
Why Briefing is important in a campaign?
Make a briefing will help us to clearly define a project and will serve as a starting point to detail is much more in a consulting document, but above all, the most important thing is not to leave this document in the drawer. Following it is a working method that will allow us to easily analyze the results of our projects and businesses, facilitating decision-making and helping us to correct errors effectively to be more efficient.
How a Briefing Looks Like
How a Company Briefing looks like
For big projects, these briefings are usually carried out in the reverse order, that is, we would first do a business briefing, where we would evaluate:
- The company:
– Brief description of the business object.
– Products or services.
– Information about the market.
- Particularities of the industry:
– companies that you consider the competition.
– Direct competition.
– Competitive advantages.
- Consumer analysis:
– Market trends.
– Analysis of the purchase process.
How a Marketing Briefing looks like
Now we are going to make a marketing briefing:
- What products/services do we sell and where?
- Who is our ideal client?
- What need or problems do they have?
- Why can we help you?
- Do they belong to a specific market niche?
- What is it that makes customers buy from our competition?
- What are our sales goals?
- What personal resources and budget do we have?
How a Advertising Briefing Looks like
Now we are going to make an advertising briefing:
- USP or Unique Selling Proposition.
- Tone of communication.
- Advertising channels that we are going to use.
- Target to hit per channel.
- Launch dates of the advertising campaigns in the different channels.
- Objectives per campaign.
And we would end with a creative briefing for each of the advertising channels, where we would detail the design of the advertising pieces and their message.