How to make a good creative idea, GREAT!

As advertising professionals we love to claim that “we are in the communication business” – regardless of whether we are setting guidelines for fresh recruits, or making an impression with our clients or even when we are casually chatting to our co-travellers on a flight. However whenever it comes to making our presentations – long or short, pitch or regular, ideas or facts, creative or strategy, etc. – we often tend to forget this simple reality!

While there have been many suggestions / tips available online on how to make a “powerpoint” or “key-note” presentation more interesting, we rarely come across practical, workable tips to help our young, fiery creative professionals demonstrate their creative ideas.

Long ago, one of our very senior creative heads used to highlight the point that regardless of whether it’s a print, radio, or TV idea, every creative person must master the art of story-telling while presenting their ideas. Story telling helps to build up interest, creates suspense and makes the audience realize the true potential of an idea.

For example, while presenting the idea for a print ad, he used to take off from the communication strategy, outlining the approach for message strategy, and then introduce the visible clue that captured the central idea. The clue could be a typo treatment, or a sketch, or the main visual of the ad. And then talking about how it would lead to the main message (verbal / non verbal) he would reveal the full creative idea in its totality. By this time the client was already sold to the idea.

I came across so many young and bright creative professionals, who lose out while presenting their print creative. And more often, I have come across people who present their TVC script / idea in “Audio”-“Video” format, reading out each section as if it’s a chore! By the time the script is over, the audience starts wondering: “what was the big idea?”

TVC is almost like a 3D presentation – in the sense that apart from visual and aural inputs one also starts getting a 3rd dimension – that of a vibration, feeling or empathy with the characters or elements used in it. This 3rd dimension is absent in a TVC script, which needs to be re-created while presenting the idea. Otherwise the idea gets canned!

How many creative professionals know, or more importantly practice, these principles? Once, a senior creative professional demonstrated the power of his creative idea, by enacting his whole 30 second TVC live, by performing the role and action of the central character of the film, all by himself!!!

This TVC was about a phone with a theft-tracking feature. To demonstrate the TVC, first he spoke about how the scene opens, and who’s the central character. Next started the story, by started enacting all the things the character was supposed to be doing in the film – i.e. snatching the phone, jumping out of a bus, running through myriad obstacles / situations to get away as far as possible with the stolen phone, etc. And then he stopped, talking about the reveal, or how the film ends, highlighting the USP of the phone.

Now who wouldn’t get sold to this kind of demonstration? And how many of our young creative people take the pains to do this?

All ideas are, in a way, good ideas! However, it requires the passion, storytelling ability and demonstration to make some of the ideas come alive, and be one great idea!

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