Production decoupling is the separation of creative production from creative ideation and media buying. This is without
doubt the way forward in advertising, with many marketers following suit in recent years.
Historically, creative and media production were departments in advertising agencies, which served as one-stop-shops
for clients looking to create ads from scratch. Separating creative ideation from production allows brands greater
efficiency, transparency, and control. Through decoupling, clients can gain a clearer understanding of production
costs and minimise them through production consolidation.
Nowadays, brands experience high demand for digital marketing content, with videos driving the most consumer engagement.
However, budget constraints often result in agencies being pushed to produce more with less. Production consolidation
puts economies of scale into the production process and reduces the cost of producing engaging content.
Production decoupling offers clients the ability to develop creative ideas independently of production. This means
that ideas can originate internally or externally from an agency or other source. Through this process, each stakeholder
can focus solely on their area of expertise, raising the overall quality of the final output.
Some advantages to decoupling production include:
Specialisation: A primary reason that production decoupling is utilised is that many production services require expertise,
as well as high demands. Since production houses focus solely on, well, production, they have a great deal of technical
experience in managing production requirements on global levels. Specialists also have the expertise to build better
platforms and be more robust and innovative about their distribution strategies. They are more aware of current
technologies and updates, so they are at a better position to give reliable advice on measures to be taken, or what
is just the latest passing trend.
Faster to market: Again, specialist houses are well versed in best practices in a given industry in terms of communication
and distribution. Therefore, their efficient processes allow for quicker execution in bringing campaigns to markets on global or local levels.
Transparency and control: Agencies often employ third-party distribution teams to manage deliverables, creating high
costs for brands. Production decoupling approaches can avoid utilising third parties for production work once effective
procedures, visibility and tracking, communications channels and KPIs are all properly put in place.
Creative freedom: Production decoupling allows the agency of record to focus on creative development, ideation and strategies.
Once the production work is left to specialist houses, the creative agencies can spend time fleshing out creative
concepts instead of dealing with campaign particulars that don’t require their expertise. In addition, production
decoupling also gives marketers the freedom to choose the best in class when seeking creative development. They
can employ their agency of record, production houses and even user-generated content in order to extract the highest
quality and most relevant content required for their campaigns.
Consistency: Because brands often run multiple campaigns over several regions and languages, inconsistencies may arise
across different platforms or markets. Employing a centralised production house for all production work can offer more
visibility and consistency when delivering assets and also during distribution.
Competitive pricing: Consolidating all production work under one roof comes with the benefit of a consolidated cost.
Because many houses use a rate card approach, it also allows for greater visibility on pricing and less hidden overhead charges.
Global scale: Generally, production houses also have the added benefit of accessing a global network, and understand
the nuances of the language and culture on the local scale. This better ensures that master assets resonate as best
as possible with the campaign’s target audience.
Sharing assets: Sharing assets across markets is made more efficient through the use of an asset library for storing
all finalised assets from all markets that are serviced. This provides multiple benefits for local marketing teams:
- Assets don’t need to be built from scratch, a ‘create less, adapt more’ philosophy.
- Easily choose existing finalised artwork from other markets and localise it.
- Assets are sorted and tagged so they can easily be found.
- Save time, money and resources during the creative development phase.
- Provide a single “source of truth” repository for assets, maximising reuse and avoiding duplicated work.
- Ensure brand integrity and consistency across content projects.
- Local usage rights are handled in the tool in a transparent way.