May 19, 2021

A successful marketing agency focuses on so much more than the creative side of a project.

When visiting an agency’s site – ours included – the first thing you’re likely to see is their portfolio; the best visual assets pulled from the collective minds of the design time alongside project information, to show its returns.

But while strong visuals and the creative journey of the brief are incredibly important to show off, we think it’s essential that your agency of choice should also give prospects and clients a look behind the curtain at what goes on behind the scenes.

Because becoming a trusted, highly-effective agency isn’t just about creating images and videos that look nice.

It’s about handling the logistics of the project, too, to get from initial brief to launch as seamlessly as possible – both keeping the client in the loop at all times while, simultaneously, taking any and every burden from their shoulders.

How TAKEOFF handles logistics for each and every creative project

The success of every project we undertake is heavily tied to the feasibility stage. This takes place at the beginning of each project, where we consider and plan every logistical element possible.

We go as far as we possibly can during the feasibility stage to keep on top of logistical planning. Tight logistics have a huge impact on lead times and – most importantly for the client – budget.

So, how exactly do we do it? When a project starts, we enter the sampling phase, where we source the right suppliers, artists and materials that we think will really bring the final product to life.

Once each element has been through the approval phase, we begin the production phase. Time is against us here, and we need a first sample for each item we need to create for the project.

Imagine that’s a press kit – we make foam cut-outs of each item and element, and build the box around those samples to guide the creative process and help us create something brilliant.

The fulfilment stage is next. We receive the actual items we’ve created for the project from our production specs. This is, arguably, the most sensitive stage of the process, and why the feasibility stage is so important. 

If we’ve made a mistake at the sampling process and got our materials or measurements wrong, then it could throw the whole project into jeopardy. Confidence in our initial logistical planning is crucial, so this doesn’t happen.

Once we’re happy, all items will be packed to make the opening experience as unique and magical for the recipient as possible. Then, we focus on packaging everything up. This stage also allows us to make refinements if necessary.

It’s here we focus on delivery; on prepping paperwork for shipping; on arranging collection and distribution with international partners, and more.

When people think ‘logistics’ they usually think of general things like the weight and size of the final package alongside distribution and delivery logistics.

Those larger logistical considerations are, of course, essential to the wider process – but it pays to sweat the smaller stuff, too.

Batteries, for instance. Are they involved in the product? Are any other electrical power systems involved in, say, a diorama or limited edition? If there are then customs delays are possible and it’s likely a bit more paperwork will be filled out.

Consider destination, too. Is the final product heading to America, for example? If so, then we need to consider FDA regulations if any possible hazardous materials are present in the product.

We’ll take each logistical element into account, no matter its size or significance. Everything is a race against time; we have to get the major and minor logistical challenges spot on every time. 

Fail to prepare, prepare to fail

Let’s talk about logistics in a more traditional sense, too. Model creation and packaging for limited editions, for instance, is something else that we’ve recently written about, and how important precise logistical planning is to a smooth product launch.

An amazing limited edition can take upwards of a year to complete, from initial brief to global delivery. As many of the parts will be constructed in China, then it’s incredibly important to take their national holidays, shipping times and more into account for seamless delivery.

Logistics also have to be considered at exhibitions and events, more-so than ever in light of the Coronavirus pandemic. Questions need to be asked about the space available to you to work with, how long it takes to activate the stand, delivery distance, customs, packaging requirements and more.

Take our Giant Drake statue, for instance; as fantastic as it looked at PAX West in 2017, it was also interactive. People could climb on it to have their picture taken – something that we had to consider in the design and activation of the statue.

How safe was it? How could we make it safer without making it less fun? How long would the giant statue take to activate without compromising on both time and safety? Was every single piece of the drake safe while making best use of the space available to Warner Bros.?

Creativity and strong visuals are great, but having all your bases covered in a logistical sense is just as important, acting as the strongest foundation possible for the creative to flourish from.

A trusted, respected creative agency will cover all logistical requirements, while injecting an enormous amount of creativity into your wider brand.

Find out more about the importance of tight logistics and how they impact any and every creative project by speaking to the TAKEOFF Team today!