10 Questions to Ask Yourself When Writing an Agency Brief
“If you are trying to sell someone your idea and you can’t define it to yourself, then that is a problem.” – Garance Dore
Largely speaking, when a brand gets in touch they know what they are looking for from an agency. Sometimes, however, as we break it down, we can soon realise that the brief is a little muddy and they’re not always sure about what they’re looking for. Whilst Garance Dore sees it as a problem, as a digital marketing agency, we’re here to help and guide in-house marketers to make the right decision.
We thought we would help the process by sharing some of the questions we will always ask in the initial stages of a project and why which will in turn help you write a brief for an agency.
1 What is the business objective?
The business objective can be creative or commercial but it shows where the business is focusing on the success of the project/ work. For example “We’re looking to grow our share of voice amongst our set competitors by X%” or “We’re looking to increase revenue by 40% YoY”.
By understanding the business objectives and targets, we are able to better guide you in terms of which channel should be doing what for you to achieve the objective/ targets.
2 What is your biggest business challenge?
This is ultimately to understand how we can help you better. There can be more than one, however, often this is “we do not have the time or expertise to do X”, or “we are doing X but we’re not seeing the results.”
The more insight into the challenges you’re facing the better we can help you.
3 What is your budget?
Many clients like to hold back the budget figure they have assigned to a project, however, this is vital to understand in order for the agency to pull together the right proposal to provide the most cost-effective plan to bring the objectives to fruition.
4 What is your timeframe?
To help us understand the timeframe in which we would need to execute the work, the team we would need to resource the work proposed as well as manage your expectations.
5 What brand positioning work has been done before?
This helps us understand the point from which we will be joining a project. If this work has been executed, then we can start with brand immersion alongside the brand strategy. If not, then we would typically recommend undergoing a brand strategy work.
6 What work has been done which is similar to the project?
Whether this is how something is being managed currently, or a campaign that was run recently, understanding the past, and why you’re looking to change it will help us understand the project better.
7 What is the team structure like?
It’s great to know who we would be working with, throughout the project and to better understand the human resource your side to support the project/work.
8 What does success look like?
This will be linked to the business objectives. Success can also be linked with the management and delivery of the process – to match how you work as a company.
9 What is the process of approval?
As we are a time-based company, this helps us understand how much time may be needed on an account management level as well as how much lead time we would need to build into a plan.
We hope this helps you formulate a strong agency brief. If you would like some support on defining what work you’re looking for, do not hesitate to get in touch and perhaps we can help you navigate the work you may need to do to build your brand.