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What Is Creative Consistency and Why It Matters

Shoppers crave consistency. In fact, 74% are more loyal to companies with consistent, high-quality branding in creative content. What exactly does this mean? It’s time for marketing organizations to start thinking critically about their campaigns if they want to move the needle. 

The challenge is how to maintain consistency at scale. Teams are working harder and faster than ever before to keep up in today’s market. With so many internal team members and external partners moving at lightning speed, more people often means more errors. If it wasn’t challenging enough, it becomes an even bigger hurdle when ensuring consistency in global organizations across different countries and regions. 

Although it may sound like a tremendous feat, it doesn’t have to be. That’s why we’re bringing you a short guide to learn everything you need to know about creative consistency, how to achieve it, and where Creative Automation fits in the picture. 

Let’s jump in. 

 

Understanding Creative Consistency

Creative consistency is maintaining brand voice and visuality across every single touchpoint, no matter how big or small. That’s because a brand story is told not through TV spots or billboards alone, but in-aisle, on digital banners, email newsletters, and so much more. Even in the smallest of touchpoints, consistency is everything.

As Leigh Finney, Associate Creative Director at SmileDirectClub said on the Brand-Side podcast, “We’re all digital now. We’re all overstimulated. Design excellence, consistency, messaging, and keeping it simple is the key to really standing out and making an impact.” It’s not about throwing content in front of people and seeing what sticks. It’s about quality and reliability. 

 

The Importance of Modular Design Systems

Defining creative consistency is one thing, but achieving it is another. One of the most effective ways is to rethink creative production. By shifting creative production strategy to a design-first, modular approach, marketing teams can easily achieve and maintain creative consistency. This is because a modular approach allows creative teams to develop just a few templates that can be automatically adapted to all campaign needs with interchangeable components, like headlines, CTAs, product images, pricing, and so on.

Modular design systems are taking the creative industry by storm. In Brand Excellence in a World Where Every Impression Is a Brand Impression, João Paz, Head of Design at MullenLowe U.S., notes that  “It’s important for brands to develop a modular design system that tailors every element to encode their message. This way, as elements are stripped out in order to adapt to smaller formats and different channels, the heart of the brand isn’t lost.” If brands want to ensure creative consistency across the funnel, then modular design is the production strategy to turn to. 

 

Where Advanced Design Automation Fits In

Another way to ensure consistency across thousands of assets is with advanced design automation features. Versioning and resizing assets can lead to errors and is cumbersome for designers, so high-volume and quick-turnaround campaigns need better solutions. Luckily, creative automation offers solutions to create multiple designs from one single source. Here are some of our favorite advanced design automation features: 

  •  Auto-Cropping: Upload source images to generate crops for scaling creatives across multiple sizes in minutes   
  •  Auto-Layout: Automatically adjust layouts and resize creative components to fit different content variations without the hassle of manual editing
  • Auto-Sizes: Build one design template and let automation create the additional sizes to produce distribution-ready assets at speed
  • Automated Text Treatment: Ensure text is displayed properly with a built-in library of standard break rules and custom text rule management capabilities

 

Why Lower-Funnel Marketing Needs Consistency

It’s no secret that lower-funnel marketing is often overlooked. Take dynamic product ads (DPA) for example. We’ve all seen our fair share of boring product shots on plain white backgrounds. When 85% of shoppers are more likely to trust brands with high-quality and well-designed creative content, these lower-funnel ads completely drop the ball. 

Creative consistency matters across every touchpoint, so why does it stop with lower-funnel efforts? Marketing organizations need to break the cycle if they want to maintain brand integrity and drive stronger performance. Here are three quick tips to revolutionize your dynamic product ads: 

  1. Drive consistent branding through modular design production
  2. Take an integrated approach and apply the same look and feel from upper-funnel campaigns to lower-funnel assets 
  3. Think outside the box and try single-product, model, bundle, or lifestyle shots besides your typical product packshot 

 

How to Drive Creative Consistency with Creative Automation

If you’re looking for one solution that can support creative consistency across the funnel, then it’s time to consider Celtra’s Creative Automation. Not only does the platform support modular design, advanced design automation features, and revolutionize DPA, but it drives collaboration and team efficiency. With Celtra, you can: 

  • Effortlessly govern your brand and performance assets on one, cloud-based platform
  • Adopt a modular approach to produce campaign assets with improved brand governance at a lower cost and without the additional work
  • Automate the production of multiple designs from one single source with advanced design automation features
  • Transform Dynamic Product Ads into high-quality, on-brand creative at scale 

Ready to learn more about Celtra? Check out this video or send us a note today!

 

Stay creative and listen to an episode of our Brand-Side podcast, like Building a Company and Brand Through Authentic Storytelling w/ Luciana Rozenberg or Why It Pays to Approach Campaigns w/ a Design Mindset with MullenLowe.