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7 Top Tips for Preparing a Brilliant Brief

By 4sdl, Nov 7 2013 10:30AM

Are you ever surprised that the design proposals you get don’t seem to match what you wanted?


Do you ever wonder why?


Maybe it’s the designers....or maybe it isn’t. Maybe the main reason is the quality of the brief?


Many briefs are incomplete, or not thought through. If you don’t say what you want it’s hard to get it right first time!


So, just what are the 7 Top Tips for Preparing a Brilliant Brief?...



Tip 1 – Get the Basics Right

Where is the event and when?

What is your stand size and is it space only or shell scheme?

Which hall and where is your stand in the hall? Which direction do you want to face?

Who are the organisers and who is your contact?



Tip 2 – Describe the Bigger Picture

How does this event fit into your marketing plans for this year?

Will the event be supported by other media like advertising and PR?

Is it a single event or part of a programme of activity?

Why an exhibition? What will this do for you?



Tip 3 – Determine What You Want To Achieve. What Will Success Look Like?

Set objectives (for example – to launch product X; to promote our new range; to pay for the event from extra sales)

Set clear targets (for example - £1m new sales; 50 hot leads; 4 articles in show dailies; meet with top 10 key customers)

If you’re not absolutely clear what you want to achieve, don’t be surprised if you fail

Ask yourself this – ‘after the event, when someone asks me if it was a success, how will I know?’ That’s your target!



Tip 4 – Mirror, Mirror On The Wall…..What’s your Identity?

Every company has an identity – Logo, font style, graphics, colours – you must tell your designer all these details

What type of company are you? Conservative? Leading edge? Taking the market by storm or set for steady growth? Dynamic, global, serious, fun………the list is endless and you know your company’s personality better than anyone else

What type of people are your audience? Young movers and shakers? Senior executives? People who want information or an experience?



Tip 5 – What Do You Need? And How Will It Work?

Product displays, meeting rooms, reception desks, literature displays, TV screens, hospitality area, storage, double deck, telecoms, office, kitchen....just list what you need so designers can make sure the space is planned efficiently and the budget is right

How will the stand function? What is your sales process? If designers know that you will want the sales team on the stand to be able to take visitors on a tour and finish up in a semi-enclosed meeting area with your latest product strategically placed in full view while you’re having a coffee, they can provide it for you - if you tell them!

That way you get a stand that not only looks fabulous – it also works like a dream!



Tip 6 – Be Specific About Your Main Message

Every stand has one main message, the focal point, the reason for being there. So what is it?

Evaluate the various competing messages and pick the one that is the most important, the key to driving you to achieve your success criteria

Do you mainly just want visitors to see your name and remember it?

Or do you want to tell everyone about your latest acquisition, newest range or change of logo/identity?

Think, what exactly am I trying to say?



Tip 7 – Make The Ground Rules Very Clear

Budget (you knew this was coming up!) –tell your designers how much you want to invest. You’ve allocated a budget so why keep it a secret? Designers can’t do their best work if they’re playing guessing games about your financial commitment!

How will you make your choice? What criteria do you use to select your design and build partner?

What presentation style do you prefer? Can prospective designers present in person? How long do they have to prepare? Please not 2 weeks, that’s just making it hard! No one can create a brilliant design and get it properly costed in such a short time

How many companies will you invite to tender? You don’t need more than 3 carefully selected companies. That way you will get a successful design – and save a huge amount of time in the process



To Summarise...

The better your brief, the better your result!


Invest your time before you invest your money. And if you need help creating a brilliant brief – 4sight Design can help you with that too!




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