Today was spent looking through a very interesting and challenging client brief. Take something jaded, out of date and indeed out of favour with their core audience and ‘sell it’ through a new website.

Great, a new website should fix all the problems with the product – shouldn’t it?

So where to start?

Firstly – what are we really trying to achieve here?
The starting point is to refine the brief and dig deep to uncover the core aims

Secondly – who is this ‘jaded’ target audience and what is it they really think of us? (and equally important is what would we rather they think of us?)

Next! – Well having completed points 1 and 2, this is starting to look easy – what is the gap in either knowledge, understanding or opinion?
Point 2, minus point 1 = gap (it’s as easy as that.)

Fourth – what can we say that will help fill this ‘gap’?
The point here really is about what do we have to say that is meaningful to the audience and offers real benefits, not what do we do. Ironically, this is where the client brief began, and it made me realise just how often we hear clients eulogising about themselves with scant regard to the needs, desires or benefits of/to the customer – It’s all me, me, me nowadays isn’t it?

Having done points 1 to 4, point 5 seems straightforward.

What tactics are best deployed to achieve what is required to ‘fill the gap’?

Whilst there is an ever increasing array of tactics to choose from, as a seasoned professional in this game it is clear to me which are the most appropriate. The definition work done in earlier stages makes it fairly clear cut that although the client ‘wanted a new website’, the content of the website, the messaging and the opportunity to exploit Google’s desire to feed relevant information back to their users was going to be more important than the vehicle itself.

So now it’s clear. I know what we are trying to achieve, who the target audience groups are, what we need to say and do to cause a positive reaction and how best to achieve it.

Job done you might say?

All that’s left to do now is to show the client the methodology, the science if you like, and the creative interpretation that the team have devised using the newly refined brief – oh, and of course deliver it. But then again, that’s the easy bit…… now!