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January 7, 2021  By Celtra

Illustration: Tereza Prepadnik

With content consumption on the rise, marketers are racing to take advantage of it. Although the chase brings excitement and newfound discovery, it requires a great amount of time and effort. From exploring new ways to target audiences to keeping up with growing shopper demands, it can be difficult for marketers to sustain brand growth. That’s why we decided to take a closer look at the creative challenges that marketers face today.     

Celtra conducted a survey with Regina Corso Consulting in Q4 2020, targeting 250 US-based marketing professionals director-level and up at a brand with at least 250 employees. This survey explored the creative issues marketers are experiencing at the moment and what to do about it. Let’s dive in.   

Designers need more time  

Creativity doesn’t just happen overnight. It takes time to fully work through the creative ideation process in order to find the hidden gems that make it to production. When your team has time to thoroughly develop their ideas, creativity can flow freely. That’s why almost nine in ten marketers (86%) say that their creative team needs more time to devote to the creative process. Time constraints add an additional layer of stress that can stunt overall creativity and negatively impact brand marketing. 

A disconnect between consumer expectations and creative content 

Sometimes the most damaging issues are the ones hidden right under our noses. As marketers, we know how important it is to research and understand our target audiences. Unfortunately, there is a quiet pitfall fracturing the consumer-brand relationship. During our study, we found that one-third of marketers (34%) say that high-quality design and/or layout is what first catches the customer’s eye, while 29% say an entertaining story and/or message is what grabs their attention. If we know that customers want to see exciting creativity, then why are marketers reporting a lack of creativity in the digital advertising world? We found that the majority of marketers (69%) say, when they see creative assets from brands, such as ads, promotions, and social media, that they find them to be repetitive, and almost two-thirds (63%) say very few brands are doing creative ads right now. This disconnect between the creative content that brands are producing and the creative that marketers know customers want to see ultimately creates a rift in the consumer-brand relationship.    

Production pains and how to solve them  

Shoppers grow tired of seeing the same ads over and over again. To avoid inundating them with repetitive designs, marketers need to find new creative strategies to optimize their campaigns. One effective method is to create a variety of different storytelling approaches so that audiences experience a wide variety of content. In fact, 92% of marketers say that their teams use this method. However, with increasing content demands and limited means of manual production, it becomes challenging for creative teams to keep up with producing content variety at scale. That’s why so many teams are turning to automation solutions. We found that the vast majority of marketers (88%) say that their creative teams leverage automation tools to streamline creative development. Different automation software have varying ranges of capabilities, which typically means that marketers have to compromise on their needs. Thanks to Celtra, now they don’t have to.

Celtra’s Creative Automation is the one comprehensive solution that makes it easier than ever for marketers to conquer these creative challenges. It cuts down production time by streamlining the entire process from start to finish, from content scaling to review and distribution. This means marketers can quickly and efficiently scale creative variety so that they can boost their marketing plans and experiment with various creative strategies. 

Here are the survey highlights in a nutshell

  • Creativity doesn’t happen overnight: 86% of marketers say their creative team needs more time to devote to the creative process. 
  • 92% of marketers use a variety of storytelling approaches so customers do not see the same ad and/or creative over and over.
  • Creativity is suffering: 69% of marketers say that creative assets from brands, such as ads, promotions, and social media, are repetitive and 63% say very few brands are doing creative ads right now. 
  • Automation for the win: 88% of marketers say their creative team leverages automation tools to streamline their creative development.
  • Creative variety is the main priority for 34% of marketers, followed by production efficiency (32%), faster time to market (18%), and improvise remote collaboration (16%). 
  • Eye-catching design wins: 34% say that high-quality design and/or layout is what first grabs shoppers’ attention, followed by an entertaining story or message (29%), brand recognizability (26%), and a lucrative offer (10%).
  • Memorable messaging is key: Almost all marketers (97%) say an interesting story and/or message is what makes brand creative memorable
  • Marketers want shopper engagement: 73% of marketers use Facebook and/or Instagram the most to engage with their customers, followed by email (55%), Twitter (35%), TikTok (12%), and Snapchat (8%). 

Interested in learning more about Creative Automation? Check out this video and then send us a note at marketing@celtra.com