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Planners and the idea

January 28, 2009

Most people try to explain away the role of planners as brief writers or insights people. Folks at the agency charged with bringing heaps of fresh insight by the pound into the agency, freshly minted and ready to inspire creative work.

Sometimes it works just like this, most of the time it doesn’t. The process isn’t perfectly linear, nor should it be. In an ideal world, it should be about continuous conversations, with planners regularly thinking of new ways to add something.

Years back I remember a planner at Mullen telling me how they came up with the Monster.com campaign. In a discussion about the brand, some planners mentioned having done groups with kids for Disney where questions about future career choices were a part of the discussion. The creatives mentioned they would like to see the tapes and from that viewing, this idea was born.

Anyway that’s the folklore behind it, if anyone one knows anything different, please let me know.

The point here is that planners have to do the research, write great briefs, but they also need to remain part of and contribute to the creative conversation, knowing all along just what it takes to get to an interesting idea.

Posted by Ed Cotton

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