Are You in a Creative Industry?

We do our best work working with companies that are in a creative industry, like the following:

  • Advertising and marketing
  • Architecture
  • Crafts
  • Design: product, graphic and fashion design
  • Film, TV, video, radio and photography
  • IT, software and computer services
  • Print and Electronic Publishing
  • Museums, galleries and libraries
  • Music, performing and visual arts
  • Toys and Games

Creative industries are often characterized by seven economic properties:

  • Nobody knows principle: Demand uncertainty exists because the consumers’ reaction to a product are neither known beforehand, nor easily understood afterward.
  • Art for art’s sake: Workers care about originality, technical professional skill, harmony, etc. of creative goods and are willing to settle for lower wages than offered by ‘humdrum’ jobs.
  • Motley crew principle: For relatively complex creative products (e.g., films), the production requires diversely skilled inputs. Each skilled input must be present and perform at some minimum level to produce a valuable outcome.
  • Infinite variety: Products are differentiated by quality and uniqueness; each product is a distinct combination of inputs leading to infinite variety options (e.g., works of creative writing, whether poetry, novel, screenplays or otherwise).
  • A list/B list: Skills are vertically differentiated. Artists are ranked on their skills, originality, and proficiency in creative processes and/or products. Small differences in skills and talent may yield huge differences in (financial) success.
  • Time flies: When coordinating complex projects with diversely skilled inputs, time is of the essence.
  • Ars longa: Some creative products have durability aspects that invoke copyright protection, allowing a creator or performer to collect revenues.

Creative industries are therefore not unique, but they score generally higher on these properties relative to non-creative industries.