Advertising Development

Advertising Development

Advertising development involves five essential stages, which include Planning, Preparation, Placement, Monitoring and Evaluation.


Advertising is not the result of haphazard creativity. Rather, it is the product of careful thought planning. Consequently, a planned approach is necessary to ensuring that correct goals are set at the right time and that the best possible action is taken to ensure their actualization.

To ensure that all persons concerned in any advertising development are on the same agreed plan, it is necessary to;

a) Pinpoint the single selling idea, the specific consumer needs the brands satisfies

b) Create the most effective compelling expression of the idea

c) Find the most effective media to communicate the idea

d) Eliminate uncertainty, as far as possible at each stage both before and after the exposure of the advertising.

Each of the above four distinct areas of responsibility provides one perspective of the advertising problem the Agency will be required to solve. These perspectives depend upon one another for significance and no single one has any real importance or significance except in relation to the other three. The development of an advertising campaign begins with a Client or advertiser who explains his requirements to the Agency in what is described as a BRIEF.

Sometimes, the Client will be very clear because he knows what his problems are. At times, he will be less explicit and in some occasions, the client may be the type that simply says, “I do not know what I want but I certainly know what I do not want”. In that case, the Agency will simply have to take the initiative to uncover the Client’s problem, a not too desirable situation.

Implicitly, the Client’s fears, dreams and ambitions are contained in the Brief, which constitute the cornerstone of the advertising. It follows, therefore, that the Brief should be written down as simply and concisely as possible in order that the foundation of the advertising is firm. If the foundation is not solidly firm, the end product is bound to be ineffective. Hence it is often said that an advertising campaign is only as good as the Brief from which it is developed.

Ideally the Brief should be clearly set down on one sheet of paper and presented verbally with full opportunity or discussion and, if desirable, subsequent revision. The problem, which the advertising is meant to solve, determines the content and style of the Brief. Nevertheless it should be creatively challenging to provoke the creative personnel’s interest and give the assignment in hand a feeling of importance. It is, therefore, recommended that the Brief should open with a statement of selling the excitement and importance of the job in hand. Thereafter, the Brief should contain the following basic elements.

a) The marketing and advertising objectives, which should be stated competitively as possible

b) Full marketing history, Brand name, usage; its clear characteristics, its unique qualities, e.g. size, shape, smell, other special features; market share; and previous advertising if any.

c) Statement of what the competition is doing

d)  Distribution patterns, strength and weakness

e) Available research information

f) The Advertiser’s marketing plans, how the company aims to sell its product or services, timing priorities, promotions, and test market

g) The brand’s Advertising Positioning Statement, which should indicate the weapons available to reach the objectives and show the required balance for the deployment of those weapons

h) The target of the advertising detailing the primary target group and if any, the secondary target group in as human terms as possible;

i) The appropriation for the campaign

j) Agency action with an agreed and viable Data Plan.

The style of the advertisement will depend, largely, on the information provided by the Client as detailed above. Clearly, a new brand I the market will demand a different approach from an old one. An advertisement which aims to change habits will be more challenging while one which means to consolidate consumer behavior will be more reassuring.

Therefore, a statement indicating the required style and mood of the advertising should be included in the Brief. A well-articulated Brief enables the Agency to;

(a) Develop a Copy Strategy, which covers all areas of communication and pulls them together as a package

(b) Create a concept and develop a media strategy to make an integrated campaign

(c) Produce all final materials, print, audio-visual, promotional and public relations; execute all media plans and ensure that nothing of the original creative intention is lost in the process.

The successful execution of the above action points depends, largely, on the Client Service person, The determining factors include his interpretation of the Client’s BRIEF, the questions he asks, his own Brief there from to the Agency’s Creative, Media and Production Personnel and his ability to guide them aright in the development of the copy and media strategies.

The Copy Strategy

Each strategy will obviously be different from the other depending on the input from the Brief and the answers to the questions asked by the Client Service person. Each will however, have some things in common. It should be clear, concise and creative.

The strategy document is prepared by the Agency and experienced clients (advertisers) usually insist on its preparation and approval before an advertising proposal is executed. Generally, the copy strategy considers;

(a) The Advertising Objective – there are five steps in the advertising chain from unawareness to brand patronage i.e. Unawareness, Awareness, Conviction, Preference, and then Action. The product and its positions in the competitive market determine the advertising objectives. These may come as short medium and long-term business/social objectives.

(b) The Target Audience – The people the advertising is aimed at

(c) Desired Brand Image – How does the advertiser want the consumer to see the brand? The is aided by proper definition of an Advertising Positioning Statement (APS)

(d) Consumer Benefit – The benefit the advertiser wants a consumer to feel he has derived from the brand. This may be either emotional or functional.

(e) Supporting Evidence – Product or brand attributes and formulation that justify the benefit to the consumer

(f) Unique Selling proposition (USP) – Unique attributes of the product, service or person that differentiates it (him/her) as a brand from competitors. The differentiation may be in terms of pricing, delivery, packaging, customer service, technology, customer well-being, safety, quality or some other attribute the target customer can clearly identify and associate with.

The copy strategy developed by the Agency from the Client’s Brief enables the creative department, to produce relevant copy, which it further translates into visuals. The production personnel on their part translate relevant copy into pilots or their simulated versions of commercials for presentation to the Client.

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