How To Be Crazy Creative…And Still Look Like an Expert
What’s your first impression when you see a man in a pink tux? Is he quirky,creative, fun or professional? Maybe a little bit of each? Is it a little hard to imagine that he’s an expert in his field?
Balancing originality and professionalism is like being on an imbalanced teeter-totter and trying to keep it level in the air.
Creative professionals are hard pressed by their superiors (and/or their own inner struggles) to construct an elite brand. Debates between these creative types and their analytic counterparts can ensue as the team tries to agree on what “elite branding” actually is.
This is especially true as they enter creative, somewhat relaxed arenas like online videos and blogging.
One of the best words I can think of to describe forward moving, intelligent branding is EDGY. The word “edgy” makes me think of creativity, leadership (being on the “cutting edge”) and risk-taking. These are all attributes that describe thought leaders and influential brands like Apple.
Who would have thought that the computers known for being preferred by designers, video editors and all creative types would be branded (successfully, I might add) by a simplistic piece of fruit? A fruit devoid of bright colors, I might add!
There are some takeaways here, and we will get to that. But first, let me relate this to YOU. How can you, the highly creative video professional, craft a credible, innovative and edgy brand?
At Gbox we see our top video creators and note that they truly are both creative and highly professional. We have tried to figure out how they do it.
It has something to do with their language, their look, and their balance. Let’s dissect this a little bit.
Ever read an article by someone who was obsessed with big words and overused them? Yeah…not professional. Annoying at best.
On the other hand there are writers and on-camera talent who attempt boldness and humor by using curse words or dirty language. I argue that neither of those methods is creative (and usually not effective, either).
If you’re attempting to use language and syntax to create the main attractive quality of your scripts/blogs/articles…stop now! Your thesaurus is your friend…but creativity lives much, much deeper.
One of our star Gbox creators, Joey with MmmmTastic, has hit the sweet spot with fun and effective branding for his cooking show. He agreed to let us showcase his brand and what he’s doing right.
Being a good sport, he also allowed us to take a stab at some of his masterpieces and imagine major creative mistakes he could be making. I hope you get some laughs at the outrageous things he could be doing wrong.
A Story to Tell
Creativity isn’t achieved through language alone, but it is a pivotal tool in your endeavor to convey a unique story.
When thinking about your favorite movies or books, you remember the storyline. Think about this as you write your next script or post. Where can you draw interesting anecdotes or examples? How can you convey them in a clear, simple and fun way?
By packing your content with interesting stories, you will be a step ahead of your competition, who might just be spurting out recycled information and adding colorful language to spruce it up.
Joey uses his kids in many of his videos to add a fun and interesting twist. He let’s them come up with ideas and experimental cooking. Their learning process becomes an impromptu story.
Joey found that by doing this, he broadened his audience to kids, who are likely to be encouraged to watch the cooking shows with a parent and spend time trying out their own concoctions.
Intelligent, thoughtful content will win over marketing gimmicks. Every time.
The key takeaway is this: make sure you have a riveting story to tell, and make sure it is one your audience wants to hear!
Let’s get one thing straight: Colorful does not equal creative. Nickelodeon gets away with it…but that doesn’t mean you will (And to their defense, they actually do have a pretty consistent focus on one color, orange).
Colors are a tool and they should be used, or not used, based on your product or video style.
If you do have a whacky kid show or very bright on-camera personality, you should certainly use color to accentuate your branding. Just be careful – there is a fine line between using color to highlight your content and relying on it to make the content.
Big brands like Apple or Bentley let their innovative, creative genius speak for itself. In the same way, we have noticed that successful Gbox creators don’t rely too heavily on graphics and multiple colors in their branding.
Just like language, when it comes to the “look” of your brand, being truly creative boils down to story.
Why has the simple Apple logo been so successful? It’s not for one reason alone, of course. At first, someone might think choosing a common fruit to brand a computer is random and even boring.
But it is a cause for speculation, at the very least. It sparks curiosity. I myself have spent time pondering and coming up with several reasons a marketing team, on the brink of innovative history, might choose an apple as the item that marks their brand (I think I’ve figured it out…but I’ll let you speculate for yourself!).
Your logo and branding won’t tell a story literally, but they do say something about your brand. To be creative and still effective, think of a twist! Surprise your audience a little, while still making a clear statement about who you are.
Joey decided to brand with a twist. He used a tree to indirectly relate his brand to earthiness. Since food comes from the earth, he is literally telling a story with his branding and provoking his audience to think.
As a video creator, it can be said that you have more room for creativity than some artists.
If your videos feature on-camera talent, you have the added creative opportunity afforded by fashion! Costuming and designing the colors within your brand should be a well-thought-out part of your pre-production process.
Just like our advice with the colors – make sure your choices add to your ultimate creativity as a highlight. Think of ways to accentuate your clothing. If your brand is very earthy, you might take on an indie look with hats or accessories. Just remember, everything in moderation.
A natural choice for Joey is the chef hat and apron. No need to overstate these – he simply uses them to speak clearly about who he is.
Here is a checklist for creating your “look:”
- Pick the most simple, consistent color scheme that works for your brand
- Insert stories in written content (scripts, blogs, e-books…)
- Thoughtfully consider how your logo and branding can spark curiosity and/or tell a story
- Use the same themes in both fashion and branding
Remember, everything in moderation! Let the language and look of your brand represent you without drawing too much attention. Professionals always allow their work to speak for itself.
Your best chance at standing out as an elite AND creative brand lies in putting together the right team.
We all know “that one guy” who seems to be good at everything…but even that person simply can’t do the work alone. A professional, edgy brand is all about balance.
Remember the teeter-totter analogy? Let’s think of the teeter-totter as having five legs instead of only two. Think that would be even harder to balance? Not if weight is distributed evenly!
Each leg of this teeter-totter has a seat, and each seat represents different types of intelligence amongst your team.
We suggest taking skills-tests related to your business in order to find out who is good at what. Then, create teams of people with different skills.
Is your writing good but not funny at all? Send it to the funniest person you know and ask him/her to throw some ideas at you! If you are the storyteller but your analytic knowledge is lacking, ask a counterpart team member to look over your work and help you optimize it. If your graphics come out cheesy and you know it, reach out to an expert!
The next part is the hardest part…listen. Listen to what other minds think and try your best humbly weave their ideas and insights into your work.
When everyone gets on the teeter-totter with equal weight, you will find you are well on your way to an intelligent, crazy creative brand.
One Last Note
If you have not yet given your videos a true home (i.e. your own web address and a platform you own), you will have a very hard time getting to the level of professionalism you are reaching for.
Owning your own video space is a foundation for building a legitimate business.
Gbox is a free platform developed specifically for that purpose, so that you can craft the brand that you want to without the rules and regulations of other video hosting sites. In addition, your Gbox can help you earn the revenue you need to build your creative team and produce solid content.
Tags: content marketing, content selling, creative expert, creative expertise, creative professional, creative video, creativity, Gbox, sell digital content online, Selling Online Videos, video creators, video marketing, video sales, video selling