My Creative Hack is a series of articles that introduces tips, practices, techniques and know-how that our experts use every day in their work to come up with new ideas, pinpoint the best ones and foster team work, etc. Here Lorraine Fittall, Senior Account Manager at Southpaw Communications Ltd., U.K., explains how brand immersion leads to creativity that moves people.
We tailor our solutions based on the client, category, audience and brief, but the values and attitude we apply remain consistent. As a creative agency, we use the science of emotion to help build brands. By using neuroscience and effectiveness research methods, we deliver creativity that will have high emotional impact on behalf of our clients. We call this “creativity that moves people.”
A key part of my role as the client service lead is to create the right conditions for great work to happen. One of many ways to ensure greatness is immersing myself and the wider team in our brand and client worlds. Immersion in our brands is paramount to success, and here’s two ways that inspire us:
Once we’ve received the brief from the client, it’s our job as client leads to interpret and deliver that brief to the team internally, in an inspiring and thought-provoking way. We strongly believe that in order to get the best out of people, you need to set the conditions for greatness.
Eurotunnel, an underground shuttle that transports people between the UK and France, is a great client example of this. Our client lead (Ben) was looking to brief the creative team in an immersive way, and with only 50% of the team having been on the Eurotunnel, he decided to take them on a road trip to France using the Eurotunnel shuttle to get them there.
In order to get the full experience of the service, he booked premium tickets which gave him and the team the full experience of the guest lounge at the terminal before departing, and a private lane when boarding. On arrival in France, they drove 30 minutes to Boulogne-Sur-Mer and over a team lunch discussed the journey and the experience, before finally discussing the creative brief. A great example of an immersive creative briefing session, that led to some fantastic pitch-winning ideas!
We believe the best work happens when there is a true agency/client partnership, so a key part of our role in the Client Service team is to encourage positive behaviors on the account, both internally and with the client, to support the creation of the best work and ensure we become that trusted partner. Demonstrating our genuine passion towards the brand has a vital role to play in achieving a true partnership, we do this by being ever curious, creating the right conditions and always thinking throughout the creative process how we can stand out against other agencies.
As part of our company culture, at every (appropriate) opportunity—whether a meeting, a brief, a seasonal occasion, or the like—we do our best to present what we call a “Southpaw Surprise.” This is an initiative that does exactly those three things: drive curiosity, create the mood and give us “stand-out.”
One example that springs to mind is for our dairy alternative client, Koko Dairy Free. Post a fantastic pitch win, we wanted to continue delighting our client at the campaign kick-off meeting. We asked some colleagues to voluntarily bake some sweet treats using the Koko Dairy Free products, milk, cheese or yogurt. Presented on the table when the client walked in were three amazing cakes that looked like they could be part of The Great British Bake Off! The client was overwhelmed with the effort that we had gone to and they loved the taste of them so much, they asked for the recipes so they could put them on their website. Not only did this create a talking point in our meeting, it sent warm signals back to the rest of the Koko office and showed our genuine passion for their brand.
These two creative hacks have not only proved successful for us, but most importantly driven creativity that moves people, something which as an agency we always aim to achieve with our creative output.