Inspiration on a Dime

Do Lean Budgets Impede Creativity?

When the going gets tough, the tough get more creative, a new survey suggests. 40% of marketing and advertising executives polled said campaigns become more innovative when budgets are lean. 26% felt that tight spending had no effect on creativity levels, according to The Creative Group.

Advertising and marketing executives were asked, “In general, do you think advertising and marketing campaigns become more or less creative when budgets are lean?” Their responses:

Much more creative
9%

Somewhat more creative
31%

No change
26%

Somewhat less creative
24%

Much less creative
8%

Don’t know
2%

“In a challenging economic climate, businesses rely on their marketing teams to develop campaigns that resonate with consumers who are more selective in their spending,” says Megan Slabinski, executive director of The Creative Group. “Firms that lack the resources to support traditional marketing initiatives may be willing to go out on a limb and try something different.”

Slabinski noted, however, that not all belt-tightening fosters creativity. “Our research shows that tight deadlines are a top source of creative blocks,” she said. “Consequently, marketing teams that are stretched too thin may have trouble generating quality concepts.”

The Creative Group offers the following five tips for promoting creativity among employees:

  1. Find the focus. Help staff members prioritize projects so they have sufficient time for the most important tasks. Eliminate less critical duties, or delegate them to other personnel.
  2. Surround your team with ideas. Ask staff to post any designs, artwork or quotes that they find inspiring on a wall from which everyone can draw inspiration.
  3. Brainstorm in the morning. A separate survey by The Creative Group indicated that the morning is the most creative time for a majority of professionals, so hold meetings intended to generate ideas in the early hours.
  4. Bypass burnout. Bring in freelancers during your busiest periods to prevent workers from becoming overburdened.
  5. Don’t forget to have fun. Find inexpensive ways to celebrate successes and bring levity to the job.

The Creative Group specializes in placing a range of highly skilled creative, advertising, marketing and web professionals with a variety of firms on a project and full-time basis. They also are HOW’s official career partner.

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