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“Having a Voice Unleashes the Best Results From a Creative”

The Influencers 173 Add to collection

Woodblock creative director / MD Fabian (Pit) Pross on flattening hierarchies to build true brand partnerships and produce better work

“Having a Voice Unleashes the Best Results From a Creative”

With an ever growing appetite for digital content, created by ever-progressing digitisation across all industries, brands and (digital) content creation studios are moving closer and closer together, establishing in depth and ongoing relationships. 

But where does that now leave the role of agencies?

Bigger brands have an especially strong focus on visual storytelling and in-house creative teams have always been reaching out to studios, sourcing visual assets directly from the creators. But nowadays, with communication becoming more and more visual and digital content creation being more accessible, a growing number of brands are looking to strengthen their connections with creators and feed their urge to talk to artists directly without being filtered by a third party.

Why? Because it’s a better, more direct experience for both sides. And in most cases, it results in more creative, higher quality, on-brand results. In our experience at Woodblock, in-house creative teams have less fluctuation than agencies which is an important factor to consider when looking at establishing long term relationships with content creators. 

The longer that brands and studios work together, the less they have to focus on learning the ropes from each other, and the more that they can put their energy into just creating the best content - with both sides feeling valued and understood. It all results in a more efficient and creatively driven process.

So what does that mean for creative studios like Woodblock? For us, it meant (re)learning that our input was in fact needed and valued. Transforming from a service driven task towards a creative driven one, where we are expected to actively participate in shaping a vision. Looking back, that needs some experience and confidence, but in return we get to have a voice in what we achieve with our work. Something every artist expects or dreams of and which can be very frustrating if you don’t.

But let me be clear on something - we still very much appreciate the work of agencies. It’s just about (re)defining responsibilities. Creative studios should be seen as equal partners in content production, while in many cases they are stuck as the last of many layers of voices. We’re the experts in creating audio visual experiences and we can deliver the best when we’re heard and acknowledged.

We are obviously very passionate about our craft, so it is only logical that we stand up and try to create the best possible channels for it. By establishing ongoing direct to brand relationships, we feel our creativity being unleashed... and it feels great, empowering us to act more confidently by also working with agencies. 

In the end, agencies have something we need - overarching campaigns, media planning, strategies. And we have something they need - high end content creation and audio visual storytelling expertise. So we’re looking to bring our relationship to agencies to the next, logical level that’ll make us all happy: Equal partnerships with mutual respect, involving us early in their thought process and perceiving us in the same way that brands do: an opportunity and partner to bring tons of value to their efforts in building rich visual storytelling.

The industry is fast changing and the best work is being created by those who are able to think and handle processes differently. Let’s become unstuck from the slow and outdated structures that are holding us back. Let’s move forward, sitting around the same table and valuing each other for our core skills with trust and transparency. Think outside the box and enable each other to push things forward.

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Woodblock, Fri, 11 Mar 2022 09:56:58 GMT