The Anchor: 5 things young talent should do before drafting a brand idea

23 Jan,2012

By K V Sridhar


#1 Listen to the client: Listening to the clients at various levels of brand management will give you a deeper understanding on the issues facing the brand. It is important to know where the problem or the challenge lies; at times the symptoms can be misleading and point towards the advertising while the issue could be availability of a certain pack size or erratic distribution. Remember, communication is only one of 10 things a brand does.


#2 Listen to peers: Listening to peers in the Industry or within the agency will give a good intuitive outsider’s unbiased perspective. I believe perceived problems are more dangerous than real ones. Hence the check.


#3 Listen to the consumers: Listen to their life views and then their views on consumption of various product categories, before you probe into yours. People are passionate about life, not products or brands, hence talk to them as people, not as a specialist trying to run an experiment.


#4 Listen to your mother/ wife: Often they give a selfless view on brands and their behaviour, they do not hesitate to use harsh words if required to describe the reality. This may even help you to get newer or deeper insights into life and the category.


#5 Listen to yourself: Having listened to everyone, you have won the right to listen to yourself, use your intuition to come up with a solution which in your judgment will answer the issues or meet the challenge. In the final analysis you need to be convinced about the idea, which can potentially solve the problem. This conviction is what the clients are looking for or paying you for.


Contrary to popular belief, this profession is all about listening, thinking and making a judgment call – rather than talking and then thinking while talking.


KV (“Pops”) Sridhar is the National Creative Director of Leo Burnett, India.


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