From graphic designers, copywriters, and website developers to media buyers, public relations professionals, and social media staff, a company's creative team usually comprises an array of people with differing personalities and perspectives.
Whether the team is made up of employees, outsourced talent, or a combination of both, it is important for everyone to work together as one cohesive unit to develop the most effective branding and marketing strategies for the company.
What sounds simple can present quite a challenge when opposing personalities are trying to work together. The key is to develop a creative team that clicks despite their differences.
Let’s look at some ideas to help you develop a productive creative team:
Hire a creative director/project manager.
This person brings everyone together. He or she can also help communicate the overall vision of each project and keep everyone in check.
It is not uncommon for creative minds to sometimes go off on tangents. This can actually be beneficial in a brainstorming session, but it can be detrimental when it happens in the middle of a project with a hard deadline.
The creative director/project manager should be someone with a keen eye for detail and ability to manage many different personalities.
Involve the current creative team in interview/selection process.
Most creative teams consist of a project manager, graphic designer, website developer, copywriter, public relations professional, social media manager and media buyer. Some of these skill sets may be combined; for instance, the public relations manager might also be the copywriter or social media manager. On the other hand, graphic design and website development are often their own entities.
Whether you have in-house staff, an outsourced team, or a combination, be sure to involve your current creative team in the interview/selection process of any new talent. This can help ensure you are hiring a team that works well together and is willing to get on board with the overall vision.
Develop a branding protocol.
Though many larger corporations already do this, it is rare to find a small business with a branding protocol. All businesses should have this to ensure everyone is on the same page and communicating the company vision in a concise, uniform manner.
Any branding protocol should include, at a minimum, information about: the logo (how/where it can be used and displayed, scaling, and colors); the company tagline (where it should be included and how it is to be used); and some company boilerplate to be used in all marketing materials, on your website, and in press releases.
The creative team should meet at least once a week. This is the time for everyone to discuss pending projects and offer their thoughts and ideas. More often than not, the website developer has no idea a new ad is hitting the airwaves, and the PR team is unaware of new website features.
Keeping everyone informed and minimally involved with each process can prove advantageous. Perhaps the PR department will want to distribute a press release about a new website feature or some other new project.
These meetings also help ensure consistent branding. It’s good to have a second or third eye to review ad copy and content, marketing materials, and website text. People tend to work better together when everyone is on the same page and no one feels left out.
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Careful development of your creative team is the first step in marketing success. Once you have put together a team that works well together, the sky is the limit.
However, a team that does not get along can be very detrimental to your business. Taking extra steps to ensure you hire a creative team that clicks will save you time, money, and headaches in the long run.
Gina Smith writes freelance articles for magazines, online outlets and publications on behalf of a number of companies, including Global Response. Smith covers the latest topics in the business, golf, tourism, technology and entertainment industries.