If you're already using a content creative brief template to get your content projects off on the right foot, congratulations! You're already ahead of the game in three important ways:
You're thinking about gathering the critical information you need to successfully complete a project, before it even starts—and saving yourself, your team, and your stakeholders a lot of grief in the future.
You're making it easier for your stakeholders to know how and where they can submit requests.
You're also making it easier on your team to organize these requests as they come in.
For this, you are to be congratulated.
Listen to our on-demand webinar, "Marketing Project Management 101" to learn how project management best practices will also help you stay ahead of the game with creative processes.
But there are some critical items that are often omitted from content creative brief templates, and these items can spell the difference between a good content project and highly effective one.
Is your content creative brief template missing one of these three items?
1. Due Date
You would be surprised how many creative briefs leave out the critical question: "When is this content due?" Perhaps this is because when too many content projects miss deadlines, we get a little squeamish about letting stakeholders tell us when a project has to be done.
But when you consider that the content to be created ties into a campaign—a campaign with concrete launch dates—the due date becomes a critical piece of information.
To arbitrarily decide when the content will be done, regardless of how it will affect the greater campaign, is to diminish the value of the content and the value that your team creates in your organization.
So don't be afraid to ask for a due date. Yes, it puts the pressure on your team to deliver. But it also gives your team the right constraints to test your work management muscle—and the opportunity to build value instead of hindering it.
2. Core Business Objective
We often think first about what a piece of content should say and sound like, thus neglecting a piece of content's reason for being.
This tendency usually results in the "business objective" question getting left out of the template—even though the answer to this question really defines everything about the content you're about to create.
Sometimes a stakeholder's inability to clearly answer this question will lead to a request being withdrawn while the requester goes off to figure out how their project benefits the organization.
Ultimately, this question ensures that every project your team works on is creating value for your company. And that's a good feeling.
3. Where Your Content Will Be Published or Promoted
This is a no-brainer, often more forgotten than consciously omitted. Context is crucial in content. Like the previously mentioned items, the answer to this question changes everything else about the content:
- How it's designed or written
- Its size (dimensions, word count, etc.)
- How it moves users to the next point in the customer journey
Cover All Your Bases With Our Content Creative Brief Template
Like so much in content, the perfect content creative brief template is not built in a day. It takes continual fine-tuning, feedback, and refining to match your organization's needs.
See our post called "Mastering Creative Briefs: Best Practices For Eliminating Ambiguity" to find out how to make the most of your content creative briefs.
About the Author
Marcus is a content strategist and producer who loves helping brands craft content that improves customers' lives, builds brand credibility, and demands to be shared. For the last 10 years, Marcus has worked in every type of content—from writing to video production to design—and is currently a senior content marketing manager at Workfront, where he oversees all corporate- and awareness-level level content. When he's not producing content, he's consuming it, in the form of books, movies, and podcasts.Follow on Twitter More Content by Marcus Varner