One of my earlier pieces was on Design being a key differentiator. And I mentioned the Art Directors in the industry as champions of this thought.
This piece on Playing with Design is for the rest of us. The non-creative disciplines in agencies.
Increasingly, we are realising the difference the rest of us in an agency can make in our work and relationships, with a good sense of design. Technology has made design accessible, experimental and possible. We see its impact on social media. Where we are different animals altogether. Spending time and effort on tools and Apps that make our uploads and updates look visually striking.
It is therefore a pity that we limit art and design tools, equipment and thinking to a department and not make it a way of life, when it comes to work in the agency.
It is a greater pity to see an Account Management person or a Planner struggle to get a creative team’s time for a “template” or even a word document that needs a few pictures to elevate it visually. And to wait for hours to get this done, if lucky. And yes, it is a struggle because this cannot be a priority over campaigns and layouts.
As a result, we often end up with mundane documents and power points slides, with the audience really perking up when the creative slides or layouts come up on the screen.
The funny thing is, most of our non-creative colleagues are quite happy relegating the “design” to the creative team.
The story is different with design houses. I have seen design house presentations where every piece of engagement is a visual delight. Each point sinks in, each word makes a mark.
We all need design. To communicate effectively. To hold attention. To make our point.
In my mind, while agencies are bending backwards spending on digital training, this is what is more important. Having the right tools. Learning the basics of making whatever goes out of the agency, pleasing to the eye. Conducting sessions on Design, Design Thinking Skills, as an induction and incubation.
What makes this so critical is that we are in an age of ideas versus scripts. An idea presentation sometimes makes all the difference between even winning and retaining a business. The traditional process of brief, strategy, creative, activation does not necessarily work in that pristine order.
Injecting design into our lives will make our jobs more imaginative, more interesting.
Appreciate and evaluate creativity with confidence.
Create a talking point. Make content share worthy.
Be playful in the midst of formality.
Feel more a part of creativity that defines our jobs, our business.
After all, as someone said- Design is intelligence made visible.
The views expressed are the author's independent views as an ad professional and do not reflect the organisation's viewpoint.