Picasso’s paintings are often very expensive. The most one was priced at 106 million dollar. Every of his line of drawing “draws” money. People spend millions of dollar to own a painting of Picasso. However, except for few professionals, how many people can really understand his message in his drawings? Not important. They pay for the name Picasso, not for paintings.
The creation of art works is different from that of marketing works.
An advertising product, TVC, print ads or billboard, must set an ultimate purpose: the brand core value is creatively well-communicated to customers.
Customers are ready to buy an art work though they don’t understand it. In contrast, customers will not buy a product if they don’t get the value the product brings to them. That’s the reason why the creativity in marketing is sometimes more “difficult” than in arts. Those who play around brand creativity should both “fly” with “out-of-box” ideas and keep a realistic mind to “stand on the ground”.
That’s the reason why branding or advertising agencies need the combination between “strategic mind” and “creative thinking” when brainstorming creative concepts. The imbalance of this would result in a creative product which customers find it hard to absorb. It may become a confusing art works like Picasso’s works – artistic but not “eatable”. On another hand, it is a boring ads like a bread – eatable but not artistic.
It’s a common knowledge that the creativity makes difference. A great difference. However, some marketers tend to complicate the creativity and make marketing product become “art works” that is too far away to be understandable to clients.
Creative people are tempted to create strange and confusing creative products for customers. You surely happen to stand in front of a poster or watch a TVC without getting its message. Then you are reluctant to “digest” a kind of “art works” from marketers who try to become artists. They are passionate to find the abnormal (instead of difference) and forget the ultimate purpose of marketing creative: serving the customers. Unlike in the gallery, Picasso’s paintings like Nude, Green Leaves and Bust are bought at over 100 million dollar. I bet that if these paintings had not been signed by Picasso and sold on the street pavement, would people buy them at several ten of dollar.
Another common trap of creativity is to complicate everything. Creative language should be sublime and ornate and imaginary should also be hard to understand. Big mistake! The nature and challenge of creation is to simplify complicated things and describe abstract issues by easy-to-understand words.
Great creators are not necessarily the inventors. They are capable of speaking and doing what everyone already knows. But no one knows how it works before they speak out and do it. Once Christopher Columbus asked his friends to put an egg in its vertical side without falling. No one knows how to do while he calmly lightly beat the egg without breaking it and put it on the table.
“The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.” (Albert Einstein)
“Logic will get you from A to Z; imagination will get you everywhere,” added Einstein.
Sound great! But marketers should “beware”, don’t “fly everywhere” with winged words.
Those who work in art only need great imagination to create creative works of aestheticism. Marketers; however, need both: imagination and logic. The imagination helps them come up with “out-of-box” ideas while logic plays as an invisible string which prevents them from flying too far from the destination: serving the customers.
Nguyễn Đức Sơn
Brand Strategy Director – Richard Moore Associate