No Details, No Creativity

creative-paint-brushesEveryone likes stunning slogans, ground-breaking events and big, break through ideas. However, few people think through the details when speaking of creativity. We pay more attention to details at the execution level, but what is oft overlooked is the importance of details in the creative process. In contrast to my Madison Avenue colleagues, I largely work on multinationals in China, interpreting and promoting their brands in a meaningful, market-sensitive manner.

My role, and that of Ketchum China, is to serve as a bridge between Western culture and Eastern culture. To establish, promote or re-launch an international product or brand in the Chinese market, we need to maintain global brand positioning and messaging, while localizing everything to ensure that it works on the ground. Creativity follows the same rationale.

Details Are at the Core of Success for Creativity

The Hilton Huanying Program (which translates to “welcome” in Chinese) is a global, long-term program, which serves as a paradigm of this concept in Ketchum’s work. To meet the growing needs of outbound tourism from China, a tailored experience for Chinese outbound travelers was created on the premise of extending authentic Chinese experiences . From slippers to the selection of Chinese tea to a traditional Chinese breakfast, Hilton focuses on the details.

Since launching in 2011, the Hilton Huanying Program has more than doubled, growing from 30 participating hotels in 13 countries, to 70 hotels in 23 countries, illustrating how the details are at the core of creative concepts’ success. Through successful events in San Francisco, Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, we secured massive media coverage internationally and locally. Effective program creation and execution also led to numerous industry awards.

Creativity Craves Localization to Let Details Shine Through

Looking towards the future means looking beyond localizing press releases or brand slogans. It means looking towards creation—how to better localize a global campaign/idea from its inception. It’s all about the details of local culture, consumer behavior, sales channels and local competitors. To truly embody the creative spirit, we must begin with the details of our break through ideas. In short, details are king in the PR industry; details determine our success as creators and executors.

This post first appeared on The Holmes Report.

George Gu joined Ketchum Shanghai in 2011 and brings more than 12 years of experience working in public relations and corporate communications. He specializes in corporate branding & communications, corporate social responsibility and sustainability, issue and crisis management, media relations, and new media strategic planning. Currently, he oversees the corporate & brand practice of Ketchum Shanghai, providing strategic counsel and managing public relations programs for Ketchum’s key clients in China market.