How to write the perfect marketing brief

Transcript – How to write the perfect marketing brief

A good brief will make sure everyone’s on the same page, when creating your marketing project, and make sure there’s no room for any mistakes. What makes a good brief? Hey guys, Darren Taylor of thebigmarketer.co.uk here, giving you tips, insight, and opinion on all things marketing. If that’s up your street, you should consider subscribing to my channel. Today, we’re looking at what makes a good marketing brief. How can you set your best foot forward when outsourcing any marketing activity to make sure the partner you’re working with gets a proper understanding of what you’re trying to achieve and how to make sure you’re both perfectly aligned in your objective.

Let’s jump right in. Always start your brief with a short summary of what you’re trying to achieve and the reason the project’s come around. Now, don’t spend too long on this section, so make sure it’s concise to give an overview of what’s to come in the briefing document. Highlight the kind of channels you’re thinking of, the problem that business might have, and the kind of things you’re thinking of doing to achieve the results you want from your brief. Again, I can’t stress enough, don’t make this section too long. It’s just a brief overview of your brief, to explain what you want to achieve and how you want to do it.

Keep it really concise, and really to the point, because all you’re doing right now is setting the scene. Up next, you need to give a bit of background about your organization. Now, I know I keep talking about in my videos, don’t talk about yourself too much. Well, here’s license where you can actually talk about yourself.

Because the more information you give on your company, your background, it gives the agency you’re working with, or partnering with, more information to achieve what you want them to achieve when you partner with them as well. Here, you can give your company history, give your turnover, give the kind of sectors you work in. Give all the information you need to position your business in front of the agency so they know exactly what you guys do and make sure you can achieve the results you need. The third point is really, really important and that is to define your target customer, your target market. What are you trying to achieve? Who you’re trying to target? What is the ideal customer your business has? You can look at personas, you can look at the average order value of your particular customers, and your niche. Look at all the information you have internally as a business to determine what your ideal customer is and, of course, you should know who that is.

how to write a marketing brief

I have made it really easy to write the perfect brief

Make sure you share this explicitly with the agency so there could be no confusion as to who you’re trying to target. There’s nothing worse than producing a brief being ambiguous about who you’re trying to target and, when the campaign runs, you’re getting the wrong kind of customers, or the wrong kind of calls, or the wrong kind of leads, and your campaign tanks. Guys, spend a bit of time on this section. This is going to be one of the most important sections of your brief, to make sure everyone’s on the same page for targeting the right audience for your business. Up next is another very important section, which is the obvious part of the brief, and that is the “what”. What are you trying to do?

Explain the channels you want to use, the methods you want to use. This section, in essence, is called the method, because it outlines exactly what you want to do to achieve the results you need. Here is the kind of time where you define your channels, maybe it’s an email campaign, maybe it’s a paid search campaign, maybe you want to give the agency complete leverage to use any channel they like. In this section, you give the method as to what kind of approach you’re thinking of and the kind of people you want to reach digitally as well.

Again, here, highlight anything you’ve done in the past in terms of marketing that’s worked, or not worked, so well. Give the agency all they need to try and succeed with the campaign because this section is really going to tell the story as to what you want to do and how you want to actually do it as well. Up next, you need to let the agency know your desired outcomes for the campaign. What’s the point in running the campaign where you haven’t actually defined what you want to achieve and what results you want to get, right? Let’s make sure you define that properly in the briefing process. What does that look like?

You might want to boost traffic to your website for online sales, you might want to achieve more leads for your sales team to call, you might want more inbound form submissions. All these different types of conversion points, now is the time to explicitly say what you want to achieve and, also, how much more you want to increment it by in your campaigns. Now, of course, you can’t say, for example, “I want to run a PPC campaign with a 100 quid budget and, then, I want to achieve a 200% increase in sales.”

Now, that’s just stupid. But it doesn’t mean you can’t be explicit in the results you would like to achieve because a good agency will work with that result and let you know what’s attainable, what’s not attainable, and if what you want is way above the budget you’ve specified, then they’re going to tell you that. Either way, you’ll be on the same page when the campaign goes live. Next, you’ll need to define your competitive advantages. It’s really important, early doors, to make sure you let the agency know what your advantages are as a business because, ultimately, these are the kind of USPs they’re going to be using their campaigns. They’ll understand better your position in the market as well.

Are you cheaper? Are you more expensive? Do you have a better quality of service? Do you have better customer reviews? All these kind of things feed into that process. This is a chance for you to brag a little bit as a business, show off your best features, your best USPs. Make sure that the agency has a clear understanding of what the good parts of your business are, in relation to the competition as well. We’re getting to the end of the brief now, so what comes next? Well, the next thing is to define your time frame for the project.

This is really, really important. Because you want to make sure that the agency has enough resources to deliver a project and make sure that they’re in line with your internal time frames as well. Your internal time frames are going to determine a lot of outcomes in the project. Maybe you want to launch something really, really quickly, which means resource wise and planning wise the agency might be very limited, so they can plan and put contingencies in place for that.

Maybe you’ve got tons and tons of time, which means the agency has more liberty to research more of what you can do, research more around your market, and do it with more due diligence than what you could do if you literally had to launch a campaign in the next week. Make sure you really define your time frame step by step as well. Not just saying, “Oh, I want to launch the project in a week.” Saying, “This is when we want to select an agency, this is when we want to build our creative, this is when we want to launch the product, this is when we want to actually launch the marketing campaign.” Make sure everything is aligned that way as well.

Next up, you want to define the selection process. Make sure the agency knows exactly how you’re going to select the winning agency. Now, I know it can be quite tempting to make an agency work harder in the initial stage and, say, “I want to see what you can do.” But the more ammunition you give the agency, the better results you’re going to get. Make sure you tell them everything up front in terms of the selection process. What would the winning agency specifically do that you’d want to work with? What will make them have the edge over other agencies potentially?

You know what you want in terms of an agency. Maybe you want someone really hands-on, and really hand-holding, maybe you want someone with minimal contact, so you can just get the job done and do it. You define how you want to work with the agency at this stage and make sure it’s implicitly clear because it will really help you going forward as well. Guys, I know it’s really. really tempting to make an agency jump through hoops, especially with some of the bad reputations agencies can get, and a bad rap they can get, but make sure you work with them not against them.

Finally, we end on a very simple one which is to share your contact details, share your stakeholders’ contact details, and make sure everybody knows who’s in the loop in terms of the decision making process. Simply put, put your contact details in, put an address in because the agency might need to come in to your business to have further conversations, and meetings, and pitch you. Make sure everybody knows everyone’s contact details involved in your business, who’s a stakeholder in the project, and, then, pretty much, that’s it. Your brief is good to go. Now, you might think there were a lot of points in there and how you’re going to remember to write them all down, and go through them, and what to write.

Well, I’ve actually created a brief template for you. Guys, go ahead and download that in the comments.You can literally just write in your parts of the brief, I’ve prompted as to what you should write in there as well. Everything outlined in this video is in there as well. Thank you guys so much for watching. If you like this video, please leave a like below. Let me know how you get on with the briefing process. Do you find it boring, laborious? Do you think there should be an easier way to do it? Let me know below and, more important than that, don’t forget to subscribe and I’ll see you guys on my next video

Darren Taylor