Marketing Concept Brief

The importance of a marketing concept brief

When working on a marketing campaign, one of the key issues is alignment of all stakeholders: is everyone from the client (workers and decision-makers) to the agency clear on exactly what the goals of the project are, and other key information like understanding of the audience. Getting this wrong can lead to increased costs and missed deadlines down the road, for instance if ads are created and draw major changes in the review phase.

Enter the marketing concept brief: a document that can help keep all stakeholders on the same page.

While it can take some time upfront to build out, the payback comes later in building out the creative aspects of the campaign. The document should not be lengthy but rather crystallize elements like the goals of the campaign, and background on the client.

To break this down, here are the elements contained in a good brief:

  1. Background:
    • Provides context about the product, service, or brand that is the focus of the marketing campaign
    • Includes any relevant information about the market, competition, and previous marketing efforts
  2. Objectives:
    • Clearly states what the marketing campaign aims to achieve
    • May include both primary and secondary objectives
  3. Target Audience:
    • Defines the specific group of consumers the campaign is intended to reach
    • What are their problems and what aspirations do they have
    • May include demographic, psychographic, geographic, and behavioral information
  4. Product/Service Overview:
    • What are the key features of the product/service that need to be called out
    • How exactly do the features benefit the customer
  5. Messaging:
    • Outlines the key messages the campaign will convey to the target audience
    • Ensures consistency in messaging across all marketing channels
  6. Marketing Strategies:
    • Describes the marketing strategies and tactics to be used to achieve the objectives
    • May include information about marketing channels, such as social media, email, print advertising, and more
  7. Creative Requirements:
    • Specifies any creative requirements or guidelines for the campaign
    • May include information about branding elements, such as logo use, color schemes, and typography
  8. Budget:
    • Details the budget allocated for the marketing campaign
    • May include a breakdown of costs for different activities and channels
  9. Appendices and Supporting Documents:
    • Includes any additional information, data, or documents that support the marketing concept brief

Stating this core information in one easy-to-consume document helps guide marketing campaign success. The marketing concept brief is typically signed off by the client and handed to any agency partners involved in building out the marketing campaign. Occasionally there can arise questions when creative gets reviewed, with a client suggesting changes that run counter to what was documented in the brief. Having this document can help resolve these, for instance for an agency to make the case for more budget for another round of reviews.

The marketing concept brief should also be a living document, updated based on fresh information, such as insights on customer pain points that might come through after a marketing campaign runs.

Using AI for a marketing concept brief

Generative AI tools have a role to play in constructing a brief:

Getting started on a marketing concept brief

Here’s a template that you can use for building out a marketing concept brief.

In filling this out, in can help you identify what you don’t understand about the project. This document can also be useful to guide discussions in a design thinking workshop.

Consolidating key information into a marketing concept brief can help campaign run smoother and ensure alignment across all stakeholders on the project.