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Start the new year with the best tools for giving creative feedback

Dec 2022

7 min read

Effective feedback is essential to ensure that your creative projects achieve their goals. Read on to explore several things to think about when giving creative feedback and tips for each stage of production.

Ask questions 

The article ‘8 ways to give better feedback to creatives‘ explains that in a creative scenario, asking questions leads to enhanced collaboration and often a better end product. As they say, there is no such thing as a stupid question! 


Here are some example questions from our creative team: 

1. Can you explain why you think this style will work best for our video?

2. What are the time and budget implications of making this change? 

3. What are the implications of re-designing the assets for Instagram? 


Put yourself in your audience’s shoes

Take personal bias out of the equation and put yourself in your audience’s shoes to ensure the end product successfully hits its objectives every time! 


Here are some questions you should ask yourself:

1. What will the audience feel during this scene? 

2. Will the audience understand this scene? 

3. Is my feedback based on my aesthetic preferences?


Think why?

Explaining why you would like a change to be made can help to understand the problem better so that the creative team can hit the nail on the head the first time!


Instead of ‘I don’t like the font’. Think about why you don’t like it, or even better, why it may not suit the audience; this can help the creative team to find a suitable solution. Instead, you could say, ‘The Serif Sans font is too formal for our audience; can we try another font?’ This provides crucial details for the creative team; they know A) you would like to change the font and B) you would like to avoid a formal style. 


Give examples 

It is challenging to articulate exactly what you would like to see; as creatives, we are always thinking of visual solutions to problems. Giving examples of other work, a visual style, narrative or even a soundtrack will help to demonstrate what you like and dislike. 


Creating a mood board is an excellent way to align your thoughts with your colleagues and gather inspiration and ideas. Take a look at this article by Vectornator to find out ‘What is a Mood Board & How Do You Create One?‘. The creative team can take these examples and make precise amends to shape the piece into something you are really happy with.

Pinterest mood board

Post pitch

Re-clarify your brief

Once you have chosen a creative team to collaborate with, it is a good idea to re-clarify your brief, adding extra details and filling in the gaps. You may have received interesting ideas throughout the pitch process that have altered your thinking, let the creative team know this. 


Check out our blog ‘How to: the brief‘ to find seven questions you should ask yourself before shaping the perfect brief.


Outline the objectives, goals and target audience

Ensure you have set out the three vital pillars before your campaign’s production begins: 

1. The objectives

2. The goals

3. Target audience


These will shape the campaign and are helpful to refer to when giving feedback later on.


Feedback on your script can be made using the comment tool in Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat PDF reader; this means that you, your team and the creative team can easily collaborate to ensure you are happy with the script before production begins.


Script sign-off

Agreeing on internal feedback and script sign-off early means the creative team can design a concept and storyboard. If significant script changes are made during production, this could impact the overall concept, and the creatives may have chosen a different approach if these changes were presented in the beginning. Of course, small text changes can be made at any point throughout production. 


For more tips on how to write a script, check out our blog post ‘How to: script writing


Similar to providing feedback on the script, you can use the comment tool in Adobe Acrobat PDF reader to collaborate with colleagues and make notes on a storyboard. You can find more insights on storyboarding in our ‘How to: storyboarding‘ blog.

Consolidate and align internal feedback

The storyboard often passes through a large team to make sure everyone is happy with the concept before illustration and animation begin. Colleagues can share their expertise from different areas within the business. However, this is sometimes presented to the creative team as a mixture of opinions and contradicting ideas from many people. 


The article ‘8 ways to give better feedback to creatives‘ outlines that consolidating feedback is a valuable tool. It is helpful if one person from the client team consolidates and aligns internal feedback, presenting this in one concise document. 


The individual responsible for collecting feedback from colleagues should give clear guidance on the type of feedback sought, e.g., ‘We are looking for feedback on the visual metaphors used and whether they are accurate to our approach’. This avoids confusion and means the creative team can execute the amends successfully.

Draft render

Reviewing a draft render is an exciting stage in production, as you can see your project come to life. This is an opportunity for your team to collaborate and give feedback on the draft render, which can be done by reviewing the video on Vimeo and adding time-stamped comments. As discussed in the storyboarding stage, it is essential to align internal feedback and present the creative team with consolidated notes, which can be actioned effectively.

Draft render feedback: ‘Sabika’s Story

Analysis not opinion 

Good feedback means giving analysis, not opinion. Everyone is entitled to their own tastes and in the article ‘How to give feedback‘ by Seth Godin, it explains why analysis is harder to give but is more effective as feedback.


Instead of commenting on aspects that you don’t like, focus on analysis, where you are thinking about the audience, objectives and aims of the project. For example, ‘Our audience is diverse and this scene doesn’t represent this, can we change this?’

Final supply

Understanding the type of feedback

In the final stages of production, it is essential to understand the type of feedback you are giving to ensure budgets and deadlines are met. Blocking feedback can be provided, including changes that must be made before the work is released. For example, if the work doesn’t meet the brand’s guidelines. On the other hand, advisory feedback can be given depending on budgets and deadlines. This feedback would be nice to implement but isn’t pivotal to the work’s overall success. 


Wash-up call

Once a project is wrapped up, it is helpful to have a wash-up call with the creative team to discuss what went well and how things could have gone better. This is valuable feedback that will enhance future collaborations. 


Here are some things to reflect upon: 

1. Has the campaign hit its initial aims and objectives? 

2. Does the work resonate with the target audience? 

3. What could your team or the creative team have done better?

Final thoughts 

Giving creative feedback can be tricky, but we hope this blog has given you the tools to give productive feedback so that a creative team ace your brief and produce exactly what you are looking for! 


Check out our other blogs for tips, advice, and how to guides.  

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