The account director’s guide to getting rid of arrogant creatives

The account director’s guide to getting rid of arrogant creatives
SHARE
THIS


What best describes you?

Fed up with feral creatives who treat you like you’re their personal dogsbody? Had enough of been told “it’s your job to sell”? Peed off with ideas that don’t make any sense?

This Christmas, Inga Van Kyck’s gift to the industry is her hectic ten tips on how to put copywriters and art directors firmly in their place. Follow Inga’s sure-fire suggestions and even your most arrogant creatives will be so demoralised they’ll go back to washing cars or driving cabs or whatever it is they did before they did AWARD School, and leave writing the ads to those who do it best – the suits!

 Factory visits

The quickest way to put your creatives in their place is by sending them to sample the product in a factory. Creatives live in a fantasy world where what the product actually does is unrelated to the ideas they have, which are derived primarily from copying all the cool stuff they saw on the Cannes reel.

The multiple-minded brief

The key to a good brief is having as many propositions in it as you can. The creative brain can only handle one thought at a time, so the trick is to cram as many different and mutually incompatible requirements into the brief as you can think of. This is easily done, particularly if you have sub-heads that say things like “consumer benefit”, “consumer insight”, “product attributes” or even better “brand platform”. Hours of fun watching creatives having a nervous breakdown as they try and fit them all together!

Send in the planners

Unfortunately, many creatives can’t actually read, so even though the brief is sitting right there in front of them they completely ignore it and start thinking up their own ideas. This is disastrous, because they get all excited and start saying things to each other like “hey, why don’t we get Merrick Watts?” or “how about we go to Paris and shoot Miranda Kerr?”. The best way to put the kybosh on this sort of nonsense is to send in the planners. The best planners manage to speak for hours without ever actually saying anything, thereby reducing the most hardened creative to a gibbering mess. Make sure you’ve got a planner that can never be pinned down on any single thought or benefit. A good planner begins every sentence with: “On the other hand…”

Out-of-focus groups

Nothing breaks the spirit of a creative person quicker and more effectively than staring through a two-way mirror in Yagoona listening to a group of plumber’s wives ripping their idea to shreds. Make sure the animatic or the boards are as crappy as possible (blame the budget!) and that the narrative tape is as confusing as possible (keep mentioning the product!). Throw in lots of cheap, warm wine and stale sandwiches and the results are guaranteed. Before long, your arrogant creative will be frothing at the mouth, slamming his or her fist against the window, swearing loudly (make sure the client is there for maximum impact!) and abusing the target demographic for being simple-minded halfwits who wouldn’t know a Cannes Lion if it landed on their head. Your arrogant creative will be off the account before you can say “link testing”.

Revisions and amendments

On rare occasions, star-struck clients who’ve watched too many episodes of Groin Planet will actually buy the work that the creative team shows them. This is obviously disastrous, not only from a billing point of view (where are you going to make up all the hours?) but more importantly, this gives the creatives a disproportionate sense of their own worth. Inga’s tip? Don’t say a word until the creatives have left the boardroom, then slowly start suggesting minor revisions that will “bring the idea more in line with the brief” and amendments to “broaden the appeal”.

Budgets

If all else fails, rely on the TV department to come up with a “ballpark” figure that blows the idea right out of the water so you have to start the process all over again.

Choosing the right director

OMG! The unthinkable has happened! Not only has the work been bought by the client, it got through research. At this point, your creatives will be strutting around cockier than ever. Danger zone! A ‘successful’ creative team will start to pour scorn on their suits, and behave as if their opinion matters. Some will even demand a pay rise. You have to act quickly! The best way is to work closely with the TV department (offer to buy the girls another boozy lunch) and explain how important it is to choose a director that “the client will like”. This pretty much guarantees the ad will turn out to be a totes disaster and the creatives will disown the whole project – leaving you in charge again!

Open-plan

Giving creative teams their own office only allows them to plot and scheme against you. Better to herd the lot of them into one large open-plan area where they daren’t even whisper an idea to each other in case somebody else overhears it. Utter demoralisation swiftly follows.

Team building

Set aside a day for team-building, beginning with a lengthy powerpoint presso about how the agency must all work together to get the best creative results, followed by games where everybody pretends to be creative. Ritual humiliation doesn’t get any better.

Cost controller

A cost controller will point out that the creative idea could be made much cheaper by outsourcing it to a freelance director mate of his working out of Uzbekistan who will do the entire project for half the price. On green screen. In Sydney. Astonishingly, creatives quickly lose all interest in the project.

Please login with linkedin to comment

Latest News

The Advertising ID Consortium Welcomes New Platform Partners
  • Advertising

The Advertising ID Consortium Welcomes New Platform Partners

The Advertising ID Consortium – the open identity solution for the digital advertising ecosystem – has announced new platform partners. Since the Consortium’s announcement in May 2017, the founding members have established a governance framework and product specification that includes an open and standardised cookie and accessible people-based identifiers, delivered in a secure, privacy conscious […]

Marketing Melodies Partners With Spotify-Backed Soundtrack Your Brand
  • Marketing

Marketing Melodies Partners With Spotify-Backed Soundtrack Your Brand

Australian in-store music provider Marketing Melodies has announced an exclusive reseller agreement with Spotify-backed Soundtrack Your Brand for the Australia and New Zealand markets. Founded in Sweden in 2013, Soundtrack Your Brand was developed to kill bad background music. Its flagship solution, Soundtrack Business, is a music streaming platform licensed for commercial and public spaces. The […]

Social Garden Becomes First Bronze Snapchat Certified Partner In Australia
  • Advertising
  • Marketing

Social Garden Becomes First Bronze Snapchat Certified Partner In Australia

Customer acquisition firm Social Garden has become the first business in Australia to achieve Bronze status on Snapchat. Among the new benefits Social Garden will receive as a result of its Bronze status is access to beta versions of Snapchat data tools, such as the Snapchat Conversion Pixel, as well as being among the first […]

Hypetap Appoints Nuffnang’s Chris Morfis As GM
  • Marketing

Hypetap Appoints Nuffnang’s Chris Morfis As GM

Influencer marketing player Hypetap has made its second senior hire in less than a month, appointing Chris Morfis as the company’s general manager. Joining from influencer marketing provider Nuffnang Australia, Morfis will guide Hypetap’s growing team, providing strategic direction to accelerate the company’s growth, as well as leading operations and managing relationships with key partners. Morfis’ appointment will […]

On Air sign in a studio broadcasting via radio, podcast or wireless transmission.
  • Media

ARN Announces Departure Of Content Director & Radio Veteran

Australian Radio Network (ARN) has announced that Charlie Fox, content Director for WSFM and The Edge, and WSFM morning announcer Ron E Sparks, have departed. Fox has been with ARN since 2005, and Sparks joined WSFM in 2002. ARN national content director Duncan Campbell said the departure of Fox and Sparks are part of the […]

OMD Announces New MD For Melbourne
  • Media

OMD Announces New MD For Melbourne

OMD unveils new Melbourne MD, and it certainly wasn't among any of B&T's picks. Not that we were picking, mind you.

Sydney Festival Chooses Brightcove To Enhance Online Video Content
  • Media

Sydney Festival Chooses Brightcove To Enhance Online Video Content

Video cloud service Brightcove has announced that Sydney Festival has selected the platform to improve its user experience through online video content. Brightcove will do so by removing third-party branding and pre-roll ads, as well as adding autoplay functionality, ahead of the event in January. Leveraging the Brightcove video platform to host and publish video […]

Does Your Christmas Marketing Suck?
  • Opinion

Does Your Christmas Marketing Suck?

Remember the old Palmolive soap ad that asked, "Don't wait to be told"? This is sort of similar, albeit sans any suds.

Opinion

by Peter Harris

Peter Harris
Queensland Anti-Porn Crusaders Cop Ad Ban
  • Campaigns

Queensland Anti-Porn Crusaders Cop Ad Ban

We have a strident anti-pornography policy at B&T. Earphones must be worn at all times and strictly no little people.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Nature’s Way Celebrates Big Things Little People Do In UCG Videos Via Wavemaker & Storyful
  • Advertising
  • Campaigns
  • Marketing

Nature’s Way Celebrates Big Things Little People Do In UCG Videos Via Wavemaker & Storyful

Health and wellbeing company Nature’s Way is celebrating the achievements of kids in a series of relatable and entertaining online videos that tug at the heart strings of parents. Instead of using actors to tell the brand story of Nature’s Way’s Kids Smart supplement range, Storyful has helped Wavemaker to license user-generated content clips of […]

DEC PR Wins Hisense Account
  • Marketing

DEC PR Wins Hisense Account

Electronics and whitegoods specialist Hisense has announced it has appointed DEC PR to lead its strategic communications remit in the local market, following a competitive tender process. DEC PR will work to support its brand building activities and managing corporate communications. The agency’s work will integrate closely with Hisense’s other marketing partners. Andre Iannuzzi, marketing […]