One Page Creative Brief Template

In my previous post How To Write A Killer Creative Brief, I provided some guiding principles on how to approach crafting briefs for creative teams and agencies to make them more focused, insightful, and geared to delivering highly effective and cut-through assets, campaigns, and programs. However, pulling all this together into a document that's not overly complicated and convoluted can be a challenge. A creative brief needs to offer all the necessary background, considerations, and criteria, whilst also being easy to consume and comprehend. The One Page Creative Brief template below provides a framework for marketers to outline the necessary direction and inputs for their campaigns and programs, whilst giving the creatives and planners scope to ideate and innovate so they can deliver great work.

I've experienced a lot of instances where a brief needed someone to explain it so that it could be fully understood. This is a useless exercise as it ends up like the game of Chinese Whispers...whoever you've 'briefed' has to pass that information onto others who'll invariably be the ones who actually do the work. You're reliant upon the middlemen/women to not only understand where you're coming from and what you're trying to achieve, but also to be able to represent that effectively to others. The key is to have a creative brief that's thorough yet also simple and concise so that it's easy to consume and understand without the need for further explanation.

The One Page Creative Brief template achieves this by forcing you to be focused and disciplined. Having to keep everything to only one page means that you have to really consider what should be included and, crucially, what shouldn't. One page is intentionally restrictive to promote simplicity and clarity. Every word is important. It forces you to be specific in what you articulate, and how you do so. Thereby, it makes it easier to consume for others, and then for them to share in a way that breeds wider comprehension and buy-in.

The One Page Creative Brief Template

Download your PDF or PowerPoint (PPT) template by clicking on the button below. You'll receive a blank template for you to use, together with a prompt sheet as a reference when crafting your creative brief.

Creative Brief Template

The One Page Creative Brief template contains the essential building blocks for teams to construct an effective marketing campaign or program. These building blocks break down as follows: 

Campaign Outline

This provides the key information on the make-up and parameters of the campaign:

What are the key dates and deadlines that need to be met:

  • Brief Date – when the brief is submitted / due to be delivered to the people or teams who need to act upon it
  • Brief Response – when the provider needs to deliver a response, i.e. when they need to feedback their proposals, concepts, designs, or work etc.
  • Campaign Live – the to / from dates for when the campaign needs to be in market

How much spend has been allocated for:

  • Development – the budget for upfront strategy and planning; the thinking work that needs to go into the deliverable
  • Creation – the budget for asset and content creation or production
  • Execution – the budget for media and amplification; the in-market spend to deliver the asset or content to the audience

What are the specifications for the required outputs / deliverables from the brief:

  • Format(s) – the form, composition, or arrangement that's needed, i.e. are you specifically wanting a video, written blog post, podcast, etc.
  • Length(s) – the time / page / word count etc. required
  • Variants – the number and type of different executions that should be delivered

Campaign Goals

An outline of what the campaign is looking to achieve strategically (Campaign Goals), and in terms of specific metrics (Key Performance Indicators). The Key Performance Indicators or KPIs should be expressed as both the current status and target at the end of the campaign.

It's also important here to provide a Context, what's the background to the activity? How have you got to this position? Are there any environmental factors (cultural, political, etc.) that will impact the campaign’s development or performance? This should give your goals a grounding and help the recipient of the brief to understand why you need to achieve them. 

Target Persona

A detailed picture of who you’re targeting with the campaign:

A description of who the target audience for the campaign is with a breakdown in terms of demographics, sociographics, firmographics, geographics, psychographics, behaviours, and technographics, etc. 

Any specific insights, observations or learnings about the persona that would be relevant for the campaign's development. Is there anything that the creatives or planners can use as a hook or stimulus to solicit an action or reaction from the audience?

How does the persona relate to the problem or want that you’re solving for? What are their specific needs as they pertain to the product or service that's being offered?

Key Messaging

This section provides the key messaging that you want to communicate to your target persona:

What's your value proposition?
What's the value that you're delivering to your intended audience? How are you solving their specific problem and meeting their need or want? Why is your solution better than what they're currently doing or using, or versus what else is out there including any potential competitors? What evidence do you have for this? How are you remarkable and why should they care?

What do you want the target persona to take-away?
What do you want them to think about your brand / product or service as a result of being exposed to the program, campaign or activity? What's the one-thing that they should believe? How should they feel?

What's the call-to-action?
What do you specifically want them to do as a result of this activity? What action do you want them to take?

Are there any mandatories to include?
Are there any imperatives that you need included such as logo, a specific brand strapline, website URL, contact information, legals, etc.?

Over To You...

Crafting an effective creative brief that leads to a great marketing program or campaign requires time, attention, and thought. If you put the effort in up front, you'll significantly increase the chances of producing something that meets your vision and requirements, and delivers the results that you're looking for.

Let me know how you're using the One Page Campaign Brief template and how it's working for you.