How to: Write a Marketing Campaign Brief

Creating a compelling marketing campaign is… not easy.  And too often we try to make a campaign appeal to everyone and promote everything we sell.  The result is a wan message that goes nowhere.  Instead, allow me to introduce you to the marketing campaign brief.

Marketing campaign briefs are an essential investment in your demand gen strategy.  Use the template below to tease out the specific persona you’re targeting, your unique promise to them, and the evidence that makes it believable.

>> Related: How to Plan and Launch a Marketing Campaign <<

No matter what, pick the single most important thing (it’s hard, I know).

If you’re new to marketing campaign briefs:

  • The first one is the hardest.  Just get in there and start – soon asking these five questions will be a reflex.
  • Don’t fret about writing paragraphs or finding the perfect turn of phrase. Be specific, not poetic.
  • Start with the easiest questions.  I usually find why are we doing this, who are we talking to, and how can we make this believable the easiest to answer.  The real strategy is in the relationship between the persona insight + what we’re promising.
  • Create a unique campaign brief for each product, messaging pillar, persona, industry, etc… It’s normal to have ~4 campaigns running at once. If resources are tight, layer in a new one each month or quarter.
  • Don’t try to squeeze extra differentiators or personas in here.  Campaigns are only compelling if they’re specific.
  • After drafting your campaign brief, convene your team and get their help editing and honing.
  • Use this template for campaigns big and small, from a simple display ad to a multi-year omnichannel behemoth.
  • Share the brief with everyone who touches the campaign, including designers, PR agencies, copywriters, email marketers, and social media managers.
  • And refer to the campaign brief every time you’re evaluating creative, copy, tactics, and channels.  If it doesn’t suit the strategy, it’s a nonstarter.


Real talk: hope is not a strategy! This 42-page campaign planning workbook helps you comb through stats, coordinate the team, and answer marketing’s toughest questions: What worked? What content do you need? And what can you afford?

template for annual marketing planning

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