The G.U.M.B.Y. Solution for Effective Creative

Creative is the heart and soul of any organization, and can act as the powerful catalyst that evokes an emotion, and influences a purchase, donation, or action. But how can it be developed in an effective and efficient manner?

“We have big goals. Brand goals, organizational goals, fundraising goals,” said Kevin Limongelli, Senior Director of Creative & Design at PMX Agency, speaking at the 2018 Washington Nonprofit Conference. “We also are armed with more information than we have before.”

Organizations are also facing a range of options for how to tell their stories. “A lot of what we’re doing is storytelling. But those stories are told across a really big canvas,” added Limongelli. That canvas is not just channels, but devices and formats. There are so many things that creatives have as a canvas to tell stories, but there’s no formula for great creative.

To create something like a formula for creative development, where organizations can take the data and inject in into the creative process, he determined the key is collaborating across the departments – marketing, creative, fundraising – to make that happen. For effective collaboration, Limongelli presented the G.U.M.B.Y. solution:

  • Goals – Identify your main objectives, which are different from what you want created or designed. What story do you want to tell? Additionally, what are your fundraising or sales goals? Try to simplify these goals.
  • Users – Who are the audience you’re designing for? Creatives use a user-centric design approach. “This is really about empathy, an outside-in approach to think about the user and their experience,” said Limongelli, who shared the recently re-designed website for the Boys & Girls Club of America. The custom pathways present the right options for all of the site’s visitors, including donors, members, and employees. The redesign delivered an increase in traffic and decrease in website bounce rates.
  • Material – This relates to content, context, and format. “A lot of time there are already assets that are out there, but are pushed aside because they are on another platform,” said Limongelli. A canvas of available materials allowed the Global Emergency Response Coalition to revamp their paid social campaign, placing more effective photos and videos on display on the Facebook newsfeed, instead of being siloed off on different platforms.
  • Brand – The first rule of branding is “Do No Harm.” This means not compromising the brand in pursuit of short-term goals. To do this, make sure you have brand guidelines available to share with partners, and that you speak with a unified brand voice across channels. “We always want to make sure we are harmoniously aligned with the brand standards.”
  • Yardstick – Providing a baseline or historical performance metrics can help to set KPIs to measure the project or initiative success. Ultimately, you should continue to iterate and evolve these KPIs as you hit or miss your short-term goals.

Using this system can help you develop creative that doesn’t come from a one-size-fits-all approach. With smart creative testing across different media platforms, this system can be the start of a collaborative working strategy across teams that aligns fundraising, marketing and creative objectives.

See the original post here on the official DMA blog.

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