At Stafford we always work in a problem/solution formula with the business case first. What is the problem? We want to understand the problem fully as there is always one to solve, and we must approach the business side before we use creative to solve it. We don't believe in producing creative that doesn't have a clear line to support what it is we are selling.
With this process, listening is our best friend. We listen very carefully to what our clients want to achieve, and we ask lots of questions so we can create solutions that are directly tied to those goals and objectives. For clients who have larger budgets, and longer time tables we are able to mine data for segment augmentation and community insights about subject matter. From there we build our foundation for a well crafted plan, creative, and distribution.
At the very end of this, we use good old common sense and what we call the power of why!
While this may seem simple, it always surprises us how many multi-million dollar campaigns fail to answer these obvious questions. At the end of the day, great creative without any direction, and a lack of execution is worthless. While amazing execution and account management with poor creative is unmemorable. We have been in business for over a decade because we create, execute, and manage based on the process above.
An example of our process is a branded entertainment piece we created and produced for Virgin America under our Virgin Produced service contract.
When Virgin America needed to create a new safety video we went through the challenges and problems of the business first. They wanted to engage with their elevate users who were not active as well as create some noise through what is typically a boring part of airline travel...THE SAFETY BRIEF! With no media budget the campaign would have to live solely on earned media building brand affection to garner more sales.
We knew in order to garner that kind of earned media, we would need to create something that would go viral on social media.
Virgin America had mandates for other small projects at the same time, one being labeled “Viral Video” with less than a $100k budget. Thankfully, we had forward thinking marketing executives who took a chance on our suggestion to let us create one campaign that would be of quality and hopefully achieve as many of the goals that they were wanting to achieve versus several fragmented pieces that would be underfunded and fall short. Despite their name and size they have very small marketing budgets requiring extreme discipline in solutions.
Given their brand and using customer data, we knew music and dance would be a key medium that would resonate with customers, and carve out space from their competitors.
We created a music video/musical called the Virgin America Safety Dance which doubled as a major advertising campaign as well as the inflight safety video. We strategically cast dancers who had strong social media followings, and even got granular into who their friends were to maximize leverage on social media. Our goal was to get enough social trend to trigger earned media syndication.
We built good architecture based on LISTENING to our client and then executed with financial and creative discipline.
- Executed the most successful campaign in Virgin America history
- 1.5M views on YouTube in less than 24 hours
- 11.5M views on YouTube to date
- 727M media impessions
- Over $75M in earned media
- Sales increased over 15% during the next two quarters