Selling creativity


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On 19 June 2012 at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, Landor CEO Mary Zalla gave two workshops to packed crowds on how to creatively sell creative work.

We all work hard to produce creative and, ideally, effective solutions. But we often don’t pay as much attention to how we share those solutions.

Getting the best and the most creative work produced is not just about selling. It is about inspiring your audience to see potential.

The first thing we need to do is to truly understand our audiences, empathize with them and their situation. We then need to have a few things at our disposal:

• Appreciation for the power of story versus plain facts
• Understanding of the confirmation bias
• Courage versus daring
• Awareness of the Asch Effect
• Fortitude and determination

Check out the deck from Mary’s Cannes presentation and read her article on a similar topic, “ Eight principles of creativity.”

Published in: Design, Technology, Education
  • I am creative and I used my creative imagination that produced new ideas that challenged traditional way of doing things. I applied them when I was an engineering estimator, in our production plant that solved long time problems without any cost for my employer, in my sales of high value machines, on my business development activities to promote a brand, in my personal life. Really CREATIVITY MAKES A DIFFERENCE, A BIG DIFFERENCE. - Thank you for sharing, I downloaded it. - AlVis of the Philippines
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  • wow, alot of hard work went into that presentation. Thanks for sharing it.
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Selling creativity

  1. rich history
  2. bright future Be ijing C h icago C incinnati D u b ai G e ne va H am b u rg H anoi H ong Kong Jakarta Lond on M e lb ou rne M e xico C ity M ilan M os cow M u m b ai N e w York P aris S an F rancis co S e ou l S h angh ai S ingap ore S yd ne y Tokyo 750 p e op le , 23 office s , 1 7 cou ntrie s
  3. hello, let’s chat Section 1 The truth about creativity Section 2 The power to influence I. Rapport II. Confirmation Bias I. Story Versus Facts II. Asch Effect III. Fear and Courage IV. Fortitude and Determination Section 3 Creativity in action
  4. the truth about creativity
  5. Our clients needcreativity morethan ever
  6. What iscreativity?
  7. creativity“The capacity to bring togetherknowledge and imagination”Frank Barron, Psychologist
  8. “Original ideas that have value”Sir Ken Robinson, Education and Creativity Specialist, author and speaker
  9. Principlesof Creativity
  10. Forget titles, job descriptions, and hierarchy—creativity is notCreativity a skill set; it’s a mindset, an opportunistic orientation thatis in Everyone resists habitual thinking and invites courageous exploration. To be human is to be creative.
  11. The contradictions of creativity contribute to the mystery surrounding it. Creativity is intelligent, yet requires a willingness to ask questions andCreativity be open to possibilities. It is inspired by playfulness, butis Paradoxical disciplined toward an end. Passionate but objective, energetic but reflective, individual as well as collaborative—these are just a few of creativity’s contradictions.
  12. Creativity is generative, productive and open to many alternatives.Creativity But at its heart, it seeks to make a difference. Creativity values andis Constructive celebrates imagination and mandates the practical application of its output.
  13. Creativity values imagination over image. It requires a willingness to let go of certainties and think expansively; it also demands aCreativity strong dose of determination and self-belief. History proves that newis Courageous ideas and concepts are often met with apathy, ridicule or even hostility. This is why courage and creativity are brothers.
  14. Seeing and perceiving are two different things. Sight is visual and concrete; perception is individualCreativity and interpretive. Highly creative people have a well-developedis Perceptive ability to see things in new ways, detect patterns and make connections that others may miss.
  15. Environments that allow the freedom to explore, exposure to stimulus and time to reflect inspire individual and collective creativity.Creativity Imaginative thinking can becan be Inspired suppressed by excessive rules and regulations, siloed thinking,or Suppressed stigmatization of failure, hyper- focus on efficiency and the elevation of conformity over originality.
  16. Children tend to be less self- conscious than adults and this natural naïveté leads them to ask more questions and think more laterally. Adults’ experience, andCreativity expertise can lead them to prematurely shut down new routesis Childlike of thinking. Creativity is often served when we “think like a kid,” unfettered by all the reasons something might not work but inspired by what could be.
  17. Human beings do not like ambiguity; it makes most people uncomfortable. The hallmark of a creative thinker is a willingness toCreativity accept ambiguity, embrace discomfort, and focus on theAccepts Ambiguity promise of possibility. Rather than rush back to what is familiar, the creative mind lingers, trading comfort for potential.
  18. The Truth About CreativityIt would be nice if great work always sold itself.Sometimes it doesMore often it doesn’t
  19. The Truth About CreativityAll of us spend a great deal of our lives tapping into,driving and building our capacities for creativityWe invest in it so that we can harvest it for our clientsWe spend hours, days, nights and weekendsgenerating great creativity, brilliant ideas,winning strategies, beautifully executedcampaigns, designs, promotionsWe often spend very little time thinking abouthow we are going to share this creativity
  20. This is notjust aboutselling
  21. This is aboutinfluence
  22. It’s about inspiringyour clients to see thepotential in the workyou have generated
  23. Imaginethe future
  24. Application versus ArroganceIf you think about it, there’s arrogance in the notionthat clients should be able to “see” the brillianceAnd again, sometimes it is obviousBut when it’s not, you need to be as creative abouthow you present the work, as you were in itsconception
  25. creativitycourage & creativityThis session is all about armingyou with the knowledge andstrategies that will put you in aposition to more effectivelyovercome the obstacles thatcreativity faces
  26. the power to influence
  27. Rapport you must work to truly understand your client(s) you must have empathy for them and their situation that means suspending your own agenda and thinking about their central issue
  28. “When you have rapport with someone,they are paying attention to what you haveto say. Without rapport they are not”Stephanie Palmer, “Good in a Room”
  29. Without rapport,it is very hard toinfluence othersIt would be easy if we couldsimply tell people what to doFacts are seldom enoughReason isn’t always enoughBrilliant work isn’t evenalways enough
  30. Creativity is Not EnoughCreative thinkers mustnavigate dynamic socialnetworks in the driveto actualizationThese dynamic networksare easier to navigatewith rapport
  31. Great workis not sufficientIt must get producedAnd getting it producedtakes guts and a lot ofinfluence
  32. Connections must bemade to get great workproduced Creativity isThe more revolutionary Constructivethe work, the moreimportant the connections
  33. obvious mandatories to getting great work producedMeets project objectives Competitively strongGrounded in consumer Meets success criteriaunderstandingRelevant to intended Beautifulaudience
  34. Unfortunately, evensurmounting all of thesehurdles is seldom enough Connections must be made
  35. Others need to feel andbelieve in the influenceof the work Others need to believe in you
  36. Stephanie Palmer, “Good in a Room”
  37. “When someone with a great idea doesn’t present iteffectively, it not only hurts them, but all of us as well.Why? Because mediocre ideas will get purchased andproduced if superior ideas aren’t pitched well enough”Stephanie Palmer, “Good in a Room”
  38. “My point is not that pitching is everything. Rather, it’sthat good products deserve good packaging and greatideas deserve a great pitch”Stephanie Palmer, “Good in a Room”
  39. rapport and likeabilityLikeability is a crucial ingredientin building rapport“Quick! Someone save the cat!”
  40. PredeterminationPredispositionTo determine, decide orestablish in advanceNone of us walks into a roomwithout firmly establishedideas and opinions already inour headsWe come in with knowledge,experiences, biases andopinions
  41. predeterminationPeople are biased toward confirming their existing beliefsPeople regularly display a phenomenon called confirmation bias,first noted by Francis Bacon almost 400 years ago. As he noted,“The human understanding when it has once adopted an opinion ...draws all things else to support and agree with it.”This is a type of selective thinking whereby one tends to noticeand to look for what confirms one’s beliefs and to ignore, not lookfor, or undervalue the relevance of what contradicts one’s beliefs.
  42. Research shows that providing reasons for change to those who disagree with you only serves to entrench them more deeply in opposition to what you are proposing. —Francis Bacon’s Confirmation Bias Charles Lord and Stanford University on capital punishmentStephen Denning: “The Secret Language of Leadership”
  43. Why are people seemingly so unwilling to reevaluate their positions even when presented with credible, factual evidence that would seem to refute their views? It would seem that a rational, clear– thinking person could be influenced by credible evidence Drew Weston and Emory University studyStephen Denning: “The Secret Language of Leadership”
  44. typical presentations We typically start meetings and presentations by: Defining the problem Analyzing the problem Recommending solutionsStephen Denning: “The Secret Language of Leadership”
  45. typical presentations “This is a rational appeal to reason and, if the objective is to share information with an audience that wants to hear it, this is effective. “But if the objective is to get people to change what they are doing and act in different ways...[or be open to different solutions] doesn’t tend to work as well.”Stephen Denning: “The Secret Language of Leadership”
  46. story versus factsStory can help you overcome the confirmationbias in a way that facts alone seldom canMost business people persuade via conventional rhetoricIt is intellectually based and cases are builtusing facts, statistics and credible referencesThis is rational, but not creativeDefining the problemAnalyzing the problemRecommending solutionsStephen Denning: “The Secret Language of Leadership”
  47. presentation storyA creative presentationshould start with more thanfacts. A more powerfulmethod of persuasion isuniting an idea with anemotion, and the best way todo that is through acompelling story, arousingemotion and energy.Storytelling is creative,insight-driven andimaginative and a great wayto deliver your idea.Robert McKeeThe Storytellers InternationalStorytelling Center
  48. presentation story“Stories can help people Even if you do mange to Facts are often pushedlearn, absorb, remember and persuade your audience, out, but stories can pullshare information and ideas. you’ve done so only on an people inStories motivate, persuade, intellectual basis and people But, your story and theinform and inspire” are not inspired to act by way you present it must beYou need facts. You can reason alone-remember the truthful fMRI studiesuse facts and they are and Truth is more than factualcan be persuasive. accuracy Robert McKee The Storytellers International Storytelling Center
  49. Truth is more than factual accuracy“Seven hundred happypassengers reached New Yorkafter the Titanic’s maiden voyage.“It’s the authentic truth, includingeverything that’s relevant to fullyunderstand the story”Stephen Denning: “The SecretLanguage of Leadership”
  50. Story is a powerful pullstrategy of influence. Ifyour story is good enough,people of their own freewill come to the conclusionthat they can trust you andthe solution you bringAnnette Simmons, The StoryFactor: Inspiration, Influence andPersuasion Through Storytelling,
  51. Get AttentionDefine the Problem Inspire Desire forAnalyze the Problem ChangeRecommend Solutions Reinforce with Reasons Stephen Denning: “The Secret Language of Leadership”
  52. Solomon Asch
  53. The Asch ExperimentGregory Berns: “Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently”
  54. “Most subjects caved “When asked how often they went along with the group, to group pressure at even the most conformist of least 1/3 of the time” subjects underestimated the number of times he went along with the herd.” “Without the group giving “We know what we see, the wrong answer, 95% of we know right from wrong, the subjects performed but with enough social without a single error.” pressure, we give in to the fear of standing alone.” With the group, only 25% “Conformity is exerted at were able to maintain this the decision-making stage perfect performance in a capitulation to the majority”Gregory Berns: “Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently”
  55. “A willingness to take risks...and the capacity forindependent judgment...are commoncharacteristics among highly creative individuals”Frank Barron, psychologist, 1988 “Putting creativity to work.” In Sternberg (ed) The nature of creativity.
  56. But many people Especially those withlack a capacity for less than well-independent judgment developed creative capacities
  57. There is a fear/stressresponse innate in allof us, and it usuallyserves us quite wellMillions of years ofevolution haveproduced a very activestress system that canactually override everyother system in thebrain (amygdala)Gregory Berns: “Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently”
  58. “The stress system is not rational. It reacts whenprovoked, and the reaction is powerful enough toderail even the most innovative thinkers out there”Edward de Bono, “Lateral Thinking: Creativity Step by Step”
  59. The inability to tamethe stress response, isa design (innovation)inhibitorFear can paralyzeaction and inhibit newthinking and responsesto new thinkingGregory Berns: “Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently”
  60. In this context, it is easy tosee why “decision-makers And to see thedisplay a strong biastoward the status quo” challenges that new ideas, designs,Stephen Denning, innovation faceThe Secret Language ofLeadership
  61. “Think of fear like alcohol. It impairsjudgment. Don’t make any decisionswhile under its influence”Gregory Berns, Iconoclast: ANeuroscientist Reveals How toThink Differently
  62. familiarityHuman beings are comfortedby the familiar. The humanbrain comes to like that withwhich it is familiarFrom the perspective of thebrain, it’s not that familiarthings are more pleasurableor rewarding; it’s thatunfamiliar things tend to bealarming and potentiallydangerous.Familiarity quiets theamygdalaGregory Berns: “Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently”
  63. familiarity–the mere exposure effectIn a famous 1960‘s experiment,Dr. Robert Zajonc proved thatfamiliarity influences what welike. He flashed pictures ofirregularly shaped octagons totest his subjects, but the pictureswere flashed so briefly, thesubjects were cognitivelyunaware of having seen them.Gregory Berns: “Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently”
  64. He then asked his subjects two questions:Gregory Berns: “Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently”
  65. How confident areyou that you’ve seenthis picture?Gregory Berns: “Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently”
  66. How much do youlike this picture?Gregory Berns: “Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently”
  67. People sometimeshave skewed viewsof what couragereally is
  68. Courage is sometimes confusedwith daring and/or impulseDaring is often lack of attentionto likely outcomes“There is a big difference betweenrushing ahead blindly and knowing thedanger and acting anyway.”“Action upon reflection adds aseriousness to courage that impulsefails to demonstrate.”Dr. Robert Terry
  69. courage and creativity are brothers “Creativity requires the courage to let go of certainties” Erich Fromm “Creativity requires taking what Einstein called ‘a leap into the unknown,’ putting yourself on the line as you ‘suffer the slings and arrows of ridicule.’”
  70. Courageously bring Courage can andpassion to the presentation should be sharedof the workCourage requires “Fear extinguishesauthenticity (truth) and leadership; courage ignitesinvites action (actualization) leadership.” Robert Terry
  71. creativity/invention/design can facegreat adversity
  72. You will be fortitude questioned & determination You have to have stoic resolve and unwavering determination to do what needs to be done to actualize the best workYou will not Barron analyzed ego strengthalways be and defined it as the “powerpopular to rally from setbacks and hardships”
  73. The application ofgreat creativityFortitude and determinationNot short-term focusedIterative and many chancesalong the way to lose resolveBut creativity is committed toeffecting positive outcomes sothe struggle is worth it
  74. Creativity requiresTenacity
  75. “There’s too much waste in banking.Getting rid of it takes tenacity, not brilliance”Carl Reichardt, former President of Wells FargoFrom Systems Thinking to Systemic Action by Lee Jenkins
  76. Sometimes the ideas come fortitude naturally or & determination easily; other times not Sometimes the work sells itself; often it does not. Hopefully you now feel better equipped to help shepherd your work through what can be a maze of challengesCreativity isnot for thefainthearted Now for some real-life stories
  77. creativity in action
  78. Many famous people have changedthe course of history. Some weregreat orators, others used their ownspecial skills to persuade theiraudience. What’s important is thatyou find your most compellingcharacteristics that help you topersuade your clients to buy thekind of work Mary has talked about.So what lessons can we take fromthese great persuaders?
  79. Martin Luther King was the youngestperson to receive the Nobel peace prize.Few people can forget one of the greatestspeeches of all time, which started withfour simple words: “I have a dream”. Hewas a great, passionate speaker whoshowed people a vision of the kind offuture they aspired to.But not everyone is as powerful a speakeras Martin Luther King. In contrast, BillGates is a something of a geek, with littlestage presence. But he has turned that tohis advantage. A very sincere man, mildmannered and totally committed to hiscause, he displays deep emotion and is sopassionate about his subject that it is hardnot to be won over. The point here is thatyou should never try to be someone youare not. But rather to think about thequalities that will help you influence andpersuade when you need to.
  80. Elizabeth I used her powerful skills ofpersuasion in a different way. A woman wholaid the foundations of the British Empire inthe 1600’s, she had a hugely skepticalaudience to win over. She was brilliant atrecognizing her troops’ fears and addressingthem head on. She acted thoughtfully when itmattered most and said to them whenpreparing for battle in 1588: “I know I havethe body of a weak and feeble woman, but Ihave the heart of a king, and of a king ofEngland too.”Nelson Mandela provides us with greatlessons in inspiring enormous trust, beingcompletely honest and clear in stating hisobjectives. He took people with him,whatever their persuasion—even reachingout to those who had kept him in prison for27 years. What he does best is appeal topeople’s innate sense of what is true and justthrough his personal experiences andbecause people are interested in the humancondition, this technique can help buildrapport and empathy with your audience.
  81. And finally, Steve Jobs, who is probably going to go down as one of the greatest CEOs of all time. He did all of these things at different times. His great gift was to know when to be personally humble and when a situation required great showmanship and magic to be most compelling. He learnt to be a great storyteller at both Apple and Pixar. His other important quality was total obsession with detail and preparation. (Just think about how often we end up preparing for an important meeting in the taxi on the way to the client’s offices.) He created a cult in every possible way, and he walked and talked the talk better than most. People couldnt wait for his next presentation and the queues to get into any one of them used to form days ahead of time. In complete contrast, his address at Stanford University displayed enormous humility and a completely different approach (he had already been diagnosed with cancer by then) when he simply said: “Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. Thats it. No big deal. Just 3 stories.” Think about how you make sure your clients feel the same way: excited about what you will bring them next time.Image courtesy of creative commons member acaban
  82. Finally, 3 examples of differentapproaches to clientpresentations that created thekind of theatre that was trulyinspiring for our clients:One where we created thedrama in a meeting room at ouroffices. One where we found anauthentic setting in which tostage the presentation.And one where we had neitherof these luxuries. . .
  83. Captain Morgan is a greatexample of displayingcourage and creativity inpresenting work to a longestablished and client for atraditional and somewhatconservative brand.We created the Captain’sTable aboard ship to bring tolife a dark tale that inspired awickedly clever bottle. Wehired candelabra, featherquills along with inkwells, andwe created beautifully foundpersonal writing stations foreach client.
  84. Telling the story of Espolòn meant telling thestory of Mexico. But consumers were tired ofhearing the same boring old stories frompremium tequila brands about heritage andthe distilling process. So we took them on ajourney. Telling the story in a way thatbrought the work to life, this time we found areal Mexican restaurant as the stage uponwhich to present our work.Legend says that on one bright morning inMexico, the shrill crowing of Ramon therooster was heard throughout the land. Inhomage to the brave men and women whofought fiercely to create a free andindependent Mexico, we created charactersinvited by the original posada engravingsthat tell stories of the struggles and joys ofeveryday life in Mexico. Each bottle labeldepicts a scene that captures a particularmoment in that colourful history.The brand launched on Cinco de Mayo 2010and the results have been maravilloso.
  85. Three world famous London Hotels are the subject of our next case. If you cant get the client to come to you, and hiring a restaurant just isnt going to hack it, and the client has no time, and the odds are stacked against you, thereAt landor we is still no excuse. You create the mood virtually. The CEO had to see the work immediately at her offices, and she only had 10 minutes for us. So we had to findbelieve a way of bringing the idea of “nocturnal” to life as quickly as possible. Why nocturnal? Well, hotels are pretty standard during the day, but it’s at night that they become charged with sexual possibility, an air of mystery, eventhat our heritage danger and thrilling discoveries. So we needed to bring that sense of romance to life—and quickly. We placed a perfectly formed chocolate truffle in her mouth, seated her in a sensual and sleek brown suede chair and then weis our future blindfolded, painted the perfect picture of what pure and unadulterated luxury would feel like and taste like...for the Maybourne Group of Hotels.
  86. At landor webelievethat our heritageis our future
  87. thanks
  88. AnyQuestions?