It’s the pretty stuff that does the heavy lifting

You’ve searched. You’ve critiqued. You’ve conversed. You’ve prayed, studied, and assessed.

Finally, you’ve hired your agency. 

Hiring your agency of choice is not the end of a long process, it’s the start of an exciting journey. Now that you’ve chosen a trusted partner in your fundraising efforts, you will soon begin receiving reports, joining status calls, collaborating on strategy, evaluating data, and, of course, reviewing creative.

The last, in my humble opinion, is the best part of the whole deal. Because without any physical or digital deliverables to place before your prospects’ eyes, you have nothing. No invitations to partner. No ways to further your cause. No hope for raising the very funds that first inspired you to seek an agency.

The creative, my friend, is your bread and butter. It’s the good stuff – not to mention, the pretty stuff. (We may or may not know about at least one client framing their newsletters to display on the wall.) It’s the best part about having an agency who cares just as much about your results as it does the means through which those results are achieved.

Reviewing your creative

Headlines, teasers, copy, alt text – oh my! What about iconography, typography, and photography? Or colors, placement, point size, and design?

When it comes to reviewing these creative essentials, along with many others (including emoji selection 🤯), you are entering a world where writers and designers live. Every day. The choices they make are based not on personal preference but on years of experience. They are based on results, past and present. 

Past: what has worked not only for you, but for other clients. 

Present: what’s trending (and therefore attracting attention) NOW.

We’re not afraid of being bold, of hearing from you these three little words: “It’s so creative!”

But if those three little words morph into, “It’s too creative,” we want to know what you mean.

Clarifying your reaction

What’s striking you? 

Best tip obtained while pursuing my undergraduate art minor: “Don’t just say you like or dislike it. Explain what led to your opinion.”

(And all the parents clink their glasses and say in unison with twinkly eyes, “Use your words!”)

If your immediate reaction is, “It’s off brand,” then we have a problem. We never want to violate your brand. We want to honor your brand and further it in such a way that current and prospective donors are moved to give. This is every designer, writer, producer, and creative director’s pledge of allegiance.

It’s why, as you onboard with us at Masterworks, you’ll be asked for your client brand and style guide. As much as these documents serve your organization well, they serve us as an extension of your organization. We need to know what makes you, YOU! Your green lights and red lights. Your must haves and your absolutely forbiddens.

Contrary to popular assumption, as much as we love hearing those three little words, “It’s so creative,” what we love even more are the results proving the effectiveness of the creative. 

We’re in this with you. We want your creative to shine, and we want it to convert. Viewers, readers, recipients – what we actually love is seeing each of these convert to donors. Your donors.

So please. Roll up your sleeves and jump in. Let’s put your good looking and effective creative to work!