Marketing Briefs for Specialists & Agencies – invest in pre preparation it pays great dividends.

When you begin the hunt for a new marketing agencies or specialist to outsource your marketing needs to, scoping and developing clear marketing briefs should be a key part of your pre preparation selection process.

Marketing briefs are documents that’s are used to lay the groundwork for the marketing campaign or strategies your business is seeking to launch. When crafted properly, it provides a solid foundation to ensure both internal staff and outsourced teams are on the same page when it comes to successfully executing the marketing strategies. Marketing briefs also helps ensure you attract a marketing agencies that have the skills required for your project(s), as they’ll be well informed on your requirements from the get-go.

Benefits of creating a marketing briefs

The primary purpose  a marketing briefs is to provide clear direction on what’s important, while clarifying the problems you’re seeking to address. A strong, well thought-out marketing brief can provide the following benefits:

• Reduce overall costs by ensuring details are clearly laid out from the beginning
• Provide better synchronisation between internal and external teams
• Save time and improve communication overall
• Improve alignment of expected outcomes
• Clearly identify your target audience
• Help attract the right fit marketing specialist for your business

In addition, sometimes the simple act of writing things down can force you to look at things differently. By taking the time to create a brief for a marketing agency, you just may find that you change your initial approach – writing a brief can be a valuable learning tool. It is especially helpful when done after conducting a marketing audit.

At Marketing Search, we thoroughly believe marketing briefs are an essential step in the outsource marketing process – a good brief can make or break a campaign. Below are some helpful tips to consider when coming up with marketing briefs to provide to a potential marketing providers.

Keep the marketing briefs simple

The golden rule of business applies when creating your marketing brief – keep things as simple as possible. Avoid using jargon, industry-specific lingo or acronyms and stick with language that’s easy to understand. Keep the document clean, concise and to the point, as there will be plenty of time for more details later.

Give your briefs the time and consideration they deserve

Your brief will become a fundamental part of your marketing strategy, so it should never be rushed. It doesn’t have to be a long document, but time and consideration should be taken to ensure the brief clearly outlines your objectives, timeframes and the scope of the work. Rushing through the brief will inevitably result in even longer time delays further down the track than if you approached the project without one.

Get key stakeholders involved

The earlier you can get input and recommendations from relevant stakeholders, the better position you will be in when proceeding with your brief. Seek stakeholder contributions as early in the project as possible and things will run much smoother, with everyone on the same page from the start. When creating your brief, list all stakeholders involved in the campaign and their responsibilities within the project – this will help define accountability later on.

Clarify your goals and objectives

Clarifying what you hope to achieve out of the marketing strategy is an essential part of the briefing process. Discuss this with other staff and stakeholders first to ensure everyone involved is working towards the same end goal. Consider:

• What is the overall goal of the campaign?
• What are the main reasons for this campaign?
• What are the associated risks?
• What are the problems you’re hoping to overcome?
• What is the key message this campaign hopes to communicate?
• How much time and money is available to implement the best end result?

If you struggle to be clear about the objectives, consider who, what, why, when and how this marketing campaign hopes to deliver.

Leave room for solutions

When creating your marketing briefs, remember it’s not your job to come up with the solutions to your problems – that’s what you’re hiring an external marketing professional for. Be concise about what you hope to achieve, outline any current issues and leave room for flexibility. This is where you get to take advantage of the skills and expertise provided by external agencies and this is their chance to deliver.

Things to include on your marketing briefs

• Background of your business
• Your marketing goals and objectives
• Information about the success or failure of previous marketing strategies
• Details about your target audience
• Insights into your competition
• Brand overview (identity, market positioning, USP, etc)
• Project timeframes
• Communication preferences
• Agreed KPI and performance measurements
• Budget parameters
• Terms and conditions, legal requirements and disclaimers where necessary

Once you’ve delivered your brief and have selected a marketing agency to handle the project, it’s vital to make sure everyone’s on the same page before work commences. Set up a meeting and request all attendees thoroughly go over the brief ahead of time and come prepared with any questions.

Use this opportunity to ask the agency what ideas they have for your project and whether they foresee any potential problems with your proposed budget and timeline. This is where you’ll really see the value of your brief paying off.

For more help with finding the most suitable marketing specialist, use our comprehensive checklist for finding the best marketing service provider.

Prepared your marketing briefs and ready to search for the best-fit marketing provider? Use the Marketing Search platform to find a marketing agency or specialist with the right skills and culture for your project.

Neil Anderson is the founder and director of a privately owned and operated Australian marketing search platform that enables businesses to transform their marketing impact and profitability through provisioning of better agency search & selection , talent sourcing & upskilling and project optimisation services.

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