Notice: this post was originally on Forbes.com but taken down, so am posting here.
As a Forbes Contributor, I am tasked with writing five posts per month about "The Importance Of Creativity In Modern Branding." I vastly prefer writing positive posts about work than critical posts, but the last couple months it's been slim pickings.
So instead of blindly looking for great work, I thought I'd take this problem into my own hands. You know, use my blog to inspire you to create a great idea so that I can then write about your great idea on my Forbes.com blog.
Here's exactly what I'm looking for. Or should I say, what I "want."
Want something insightful.
I find the best work teaches us a little something about ourselves. Look at the old Dove "Sketches" film exposing how differently others see us, or the Pampers work "Hush Little Baby" showing that babies bring out the best in us, or even the Donate Life film about Coleman Sweeneybeing an a**hole in life, but redeeming himself by being an organ donor.
These are powerful examples of a brand doing the hard legwork to uncover an insight about human nature that is true and is made profound coming from the respective brand.
So in your next meeting with your agency, don't just ask for great creative work, ask for insightful creative work. I can't wait to reverse engineer it all in painstaking detail for my readers in a future post.
Want something that proves your brand idea.
I personally love advertising that isn't a random act of creativity, but the kind of creativity only your brand can do because of your brand idea. Look at the recent Nike work in China called "Badge Of Honor," Tiger Beer's "3890tigers" campaign, or pretty much anything Patagonia does.
An idea that isn't what your creative team would do, but what your brand would do (channeled by your creative team).
Your brand fans are fans for a reason. They want a new song from your brand. So please give them one. You know, so I can write about it later.
Want creatively unexpected.
Gotta say, I never expected to hear a little porcelain statue of a bunny ask to be smashed because she was trapped in the prison of a bathroom in the Quilted Northern "Designed To Be Forgotten" campaign. I didn't expect the horrific ending to the Sandy Hook Promise film from last year. Nor did passersby think a devil baby would jump out at them from an unattended baby carriage in support of the Devil's Due horror film.
The "unexpected" forces us to take notice, earns a heightened sense of attention, and, according to Heat Advertising, an agency who specializes in surprise, "People in a state of surprise are more open to new information." So there's that.
It doesn't have to be an ad. It doesn't have to be a stunt. It doesn't have to be anything in particular except creatively unexpected.
Help me. Please.
So give me some insightful, creatively unexpected ideas that only your brand can do.
You'll have a great piece of communication working hard for your brand and I will have something to write about. Win-win.
But please know deadlines at Forbes.com are looming. So get on it, will you?