Best lesson I ever learnt: Know your audience
It’s always painful when an idea you ‘know’ to be outstanding, fails to live up to its billing. In uncovering what’s gone wrong you might spend days analyzing the execution, revisiting copy or graphic work to see how it might’ve been done better, or considering how alterations to color or length or headline might have achieved better results (indeed in the digital world, such iterations can be tested very quickly).
As anyone in the business of being creative can attest, looking for such minute alterations can oftentimes be far easier to accept than admitting any original concept might not have been on the money to begin with.
A winning campaign ultimately boils down to how well the idea – at its core – resonates with the audience that sees it, and such resonance depends on the accuracy of the insights you’re working with – your knowledge of your audience, and the often-subtle nuances that define them.
However good you think an idea might be, take the time to validate your assumption with its intended audience in mind (or even better – in person if possible!). Social data, market research, even anecdotal or in-house agency wide research (as a minimum) can help flesh out a multi-dimensional persona and help you spot any potential bias that could be affecting your judgement. Start with your target and build towards them.
David Willet, Weber Shandwick MENAT