Pitch Perfect: a creative guide to pitching and briefs as a young creative
A creative pitch is the ultimate test you face as a young creative. There is no better way to prove your ability or creative brawn than by landing a big chunk of business for your agency.
Too often young creatives shy away from the big, scary pitch meetings in the belief that the more senior creatives will blow them out of the water. But never shy away from an opportunity that allows you to go up against the big hitters. When it comes to a pitch, throw respect for your elders out the window and show them why they should respect you. Tip: if you’re not invited, get hold of the brief and do it anyway!
Here are 3 things I think are essential in a pitch as a young creative:
1. Make your response to the brief unique.
Especially if you're not the lead creative team. Young teams are in an agency to add a new dimension.
You’re not expected to deliver the straight ideas; you’re there to push the boundaries.
Go back to your Creative Director with ideas that everyone else would be scared to present. The worst that will happen is you’ll walk out with a heap load of respect.
2. Delivery of your idea.
A pitch is not just about the idea. It’s just as much about how you deliver the idea. This is true from delivering initial scamps to your CD, all the way up to the client presentation. Never underestimate the power of your idea set-ups.
Clients don’t buy what you create; they buy why you created it.
For this you need to use storytelling. It’s vital to start any creative presentation positively and get heads nodding. To do this start your story with a solid inspiration built on a brand truth. This is the part the client will buy into.
3. Know when to listen, and when to act.
My biggest gripe with the pitch process is the ease in which you end up with 10 chefs in the kitchen. As your idea passes through the various layers of the agency, more and more people will pass their judgment and want things to be changed.
The best creative’s know when to listen, and when to stand up and fight for the idea.
It’s your job to carry a good idea past the agency politics and department civil wars, but also to spot the golden nugget of feedback that will take your idea to the next level.
If you follow these three rules you’ll make yourself serious contenders in your agencies creative armoury. If anything, that’s the point of being the young guns. The greatest compliment you can get as a young team is for the senior teams to be scared of you.