The creative brief is a document containing the strategically important information that a creative team will need to create a successful video for your company.
Both an experienced internal creative team and an established service provider would definitely insist on formulating this document. Perhaps some already have their method of obtaining essential information, such as an interview or questionnaire. Nevertheless, it will be useful for you to collect all the information about the project in advance, especially if this requires consultation with a broader range of stakeholders. For example, some of our clients from the TOP 20 pharmaceutical companies are forced to coordinate a brief within their system and receive up to 10 confirmations – from medical advisors, procurement, compliance, etc.
A creative brief should be brief! If it is longer than two pages, it will not be effective for starting up a scientific search and creative process. Following are the fundamental questions that must be answered.
1. What is the Business Goal of the video?
In one of the previous articles, we discussed the need to determine the business objective of your video. Check it here. All related data should be included in the brief. Your business goals should be:
- Related to the main strategic objectives of the company;
- Measurable by the appropriate indicators;
- Monitored with key performance indicators
2. Who is your target audience?
In case of a commercial video for a pharmaceutical company, depending on whether it is (OTC or Rx), you will either target end-users (probably having little knowledge in science) or scientists, whose time is limited and precious.
If we are talking about training students or employees of your company, it would be nice to determine in advance their level of knowledge and training.
Record the following demographic indicators:
In the case of video aimed at the B2B sales sector, the following organizational factors are also important:
- Job position;
- Position in a decision-making chain or hierarchy.
Finally, think about going even further and recording psychographic indicators. Does your audience have common traits (for example, extraversion, curiosity, sensitivity)? The doctors themselves are rather thick-skinned people, and it is not easy to appeal to their emotions, they are more rational; at the same time, end-users of drugs are much more emotionally sensitive to information regarding their health.
3. What is your Message?
This is a vital part of the brief. In this section, you need to provide animation designers with as much detailed information about your product as possible. Everything goes. The animation studio’s medical advisor will still conduct their research on your product, but the more data you can provide, the faster the work will go.
Here are some points to consider:
- Name of the drug/medical device.
- Release form.
- The main active ingredient.
- Instruction manual.
- Any scientific data – links to publications, articles, books, corporate presentations. Links to videos of a desired nature or videos that reflect on similar issues.
- What is the pain point the product addresses? How do your buyers experience that problem?
- What are the features and benefits (both emotional and practical)?
- What are the differences in the product with that of your competitors? Who is/are the competition? Is there an action you would like your prospects to take after they see the video?
- Is there anything that absolutely must be included in the video? Anything that must not be included?
If your video is intended for employees, you should answer the following questions:
- What do you want your employees to know and why?
- Do you want employee behavior to change? If so, how?
- Will this video be used to ensure compliance? If so, what are the prerequisites?
- What kind of corporate culture are you trying to create?
If you are conducting an awareness campaign, indicate what changes in the behavior of the audience, you are striving to inspire.
4. What is your visual identity?
Many companies have brand books or brochures that codify their visual identity by defining fonts, color palettes, and graphic design rules for creating marketing materials. Include this information in the brief or, if you do not have such an arrangement, indicate examples of videos or works of the desired quality in the desired colors. Besides, share your vision of the future video – should it be informative, creative, or emotional? What exactly should not be in the video? Perhaps, an excessive naturalism?
5. How will the video be distributed?
It is imperative to know through which channels the video will be distributed because it can affect how it is made and delivered.
Below are some common channels:
- Home page videos/email videos: Generally, short videos work best. 30-60 sec.
- Booth videos: They need to get attention and quickly communicate what your company is doing. Also, sound may be lost, so do not rely on voice guidance to deliver important messages — 60-90 sec.
- Launch/event videos. Fewer time limits because the target audience is pre-assembled for a separate presentation event. However, you do not want to kill the dynamics. The video should not be too long and tedious. We recommend that you do not make a video longer than 5 minutes or separate 5-minute sections by speaker addresses.
- Commercials. They are limited to 15, 30, or 60-second slots. Some media outlets have additional broadcast limitations that must be followed.
- Social media. Many users watch videos on social networks without sound, so it is often wise to leave only textual accompaniment. Video on Instagram is limited to one minute or less.
- Med Rep presentations. Lifescience sale representatives’ visits are an essential element of sales even today. Correspondence or Skype calls cannot replace personal communication. Many companies that have implemented CLM solutions bother doctors with the need to work with tablets and many medics are not very interested. A short (no more than 90 seconds) enticing video remains an excellent icebreaker when communicating with a doctor or partner.
Often, a video is distributed through several channels simultaneously. If so, indicate which are the most important.
6. How long should your video be?
We already talked a bit about how distribution channels affect the length of a video. Research has shown that longer the video, the less likely the audience would choose to watch it. Short dynamic videos of 60-90 seconds in length are the most efficient. Such duration is optimal for explaining the mechanism of drug action, for example.
It is important to understand exactly why there is a decrease in audience interest as the video lengthens. It is not just that people watch the video and start to get bored, although this also is a thing. This is because people look at the play bar, see how much time is left on the video, and then ask themselves: “Is it worth spending X minutes of my time on this video?” The longer the video, the more likely they are to say “no.” Studies show that audience attention loss begins immediately. With a video lasting more than two minutes, you severely limit the size of your audience.
At the same time, you have certain information that you must transmit. At this stage, it is useful to consider how much info your viewer needs. For instance, if the video is about the mechanism of action of the new active ingredient that you are going to post on the website and your target audience consists of HCP or scientists. In this case, you don’t need to reveal all the tiniest nuances to inspire a purchase-aimed decision (provide contact email, request live presentation or something else). So how much data is needed and enough to convince the viewer to take the next step?
Compare the amount of information needed to achieve your goal with benefits that sizeable straight-to-the-point video will give, and you will get the right value. Include this indicator to the brief’s “preliminary duration” column.
Finally, there is one more thing that you should mention in your brief. Since this is quite a large topic, we will devote the following article to it: Video styles.