How to write a good creative brief

Good design is a collaborative problem solving process, as much as it is a purely aesthetic one..

The good design brief, therefore, should clearly communicate a clients understanding of the problem that needs to be solved by your design/communication agency. ‘Garbage in garbage out comes to mind’

It should focus on the specific objectives of the project, on the particular deliverables, rather than on its purely aesthetic or creative aspects, which are the responsibility of your design company. It is against this written document, constructed in partnership between the client and the design company, that the effectiveness of the design solution can be measured. A creative brief is not the same as a proposal document, which is usually submitted to the client by the design company in response to the former’s written request for one. Both documents, however, can be incorporated into the design brief, once the design company has been awarded the project.

No two design briefs are the same. There are, nonetheless, certain questions that should be asked in the development of most briefs.
Here are some of them.

• Why are we doing this project?
• Why are we doing it now?
• What specific outcomes, or results, do we expect from this design project?
• Who are we designing for? Do we have a single target audience, or multiple audiences?
• Who are the client’s key organisational stakeholders in this project?
• What are the phases of this design project?
• How much time should be devoted to each phase?
• What will each phase cost?
• Who are the client’s competitors?
• Who will approve the final design solution?
• What criteria will be used for this approval?
• How will the design solution be implemented?
• How will the results be measured?

The time invested in a well-considered, well-constructed design brief yields great return. It is a road map through the design process. It allows you to track your project, from the creative stages through to implementation, as well as providing a tool for measuring the results of thedesign project. Finally, it acts as a reference document for similar future projects.

How to write a good creative brief