How to Make Your Creative More Courageous

by Kendra D. Croft, Copywriter, Kastner & Partners LA

Presented by Shane Santiago, President and Chief Experience Officer at Bravely, attendees gathered to learn about what it takes to make their creative more courageous. He walked the audience through a presentation on ways to push what you are already doing and how to activate your creative ideas. “The most courageous creative, are the ones that move people to act,” said Santiago. 

Below are a few tips and tricks to inspire you to push your creative to be more courageous through activation.

Use Technology to Tell Stories 
Technology is no longer the way of the future, it is the now. Choosing not to use technology to tell your stories will only leave you left in the dust. Technology is also a direct connection to activation, so shaping your creative around an experience that invites a direct action is a win every time. Check out the Snapchat x Air Jordan Release.

Break Stuff
No matter how much we read, we will never know the answer until we test and learn. We don’t know how things are going to turn out so we have to get out of our comfort zone and try things. A great example of this is Simone Giertz, the queen of useless robots.

Play time is one of the cornerstones of the creative process. Also knowns as the incubation phase, this time allows for subliminal processing. Unplugging from the work consciously allows for our subconscious to continue working while our conscious mind is occupied. Find time to play. 

Mandate Diversity
“If you don’t have diversity, you don’t have good creative.”  —John Boiler, Creative Co-Chair Founder of 72andSunny

It’s as simple as that. Although many companies like to act like they don’t see the value in diversity, it is absolutely necessary from beginning to end of the creative process. “Diversity wins, especially in the creative industry.” 

Resolve to Create Conflict
You’ve got to push up against something to move people to action. Passive creativity doesn’t breed action, it just becomes mere entertainment. 

 Here’s how to think about finding that conflict:
  • Zeitgeist: What’s popular? What are people talking about? What is in public consciousness?
  • The Right Context: What is the right context for this messaging or conflict?
  • What do you do well? As the agency, and the people of that agency, what is it that you do best? Remembering what you do well in the face of conflict only works in your favor for success.

A great example of using these three tools for creativity is McCann’s creation of "The Fearless Girl"… but sometimes we must create our own conflict.

Connect Courageously (and Personally)
Consumers are constantly looking for something that connects and speaks to them specifically. From who they follow and what they like, the more you can connect with the digital audience the stronger your creative engagement. 

Expect Failure (and Be Okay With It)
Operate with the expectation of failure. The expectation of failure allows you to be free in your creation. Within every failure are numerous opportunities, but if we hold back we may never tap into a new opportunity. 

Santiago leads his own team to live Bravely every day by these four principles:
  • Testing & Learning.
  • Using principles of design to solve problems.
  • Diversity in leadership experiences
  • Diversity in brands.

You can find more about Shane Santiago and his agency here. (They even have some dope shirts for purchase!) 


About Kendra Croft
Posted: June 2018