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Introducing CaaS: The Better Way to Get Quality Creative on Demand and on Budget

Fredrik Thomassen
PublishedFeb 26, 2023
What is Creative as a Service (CaaS)? - Superside
8 min read
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Creative is the most important variable for driving marketing performance.

Companies like Nike, Red Bull and others get it—and their fan bases (and stock prices) show it, too.

Up to 75% of campaign performance is determined by the quality of the creative—and the need for compelling creative has never been greater.

Modern marketing teams don't just need high-quality creative, they need it in increasing volumes and with fast turnarounds. With more channels, niches and competition than ever, creative fuels the marketing engines needed to drive growth.

But, there’s an all-too-familiar problem:

Creative teams are continually overwhelmed by the volume and speed of requests. As a result, priority work is rushed, lower-urgency work is delayed and there's no time for more strategic projects.

Outsourcing is a logical response. But, agencies and freelancers are piecemeal stopgaps rather than long-term solutions. Because—to put it simply—they just don’t provide the speed, scale and flexibility needed to drive growth.

The risk for marketing and creative leaders is accepting all of this as the status quo—leaving unclaimed revenue on the table.

The good news:

There's a better way to get the creative you need to reliably drive growth: Creative-as-a-Service (CaaS). The inherent scalability and adaptability of this solution will help you seize opportunities and keep up with even the most unpredictable creative needs.

When You Can't Get the Design You Need, You Can't Grow

How do you equip your teams with the assets they need to perform without burning out your creative team? Let’s look at what’s happening and how you can empower everyone and finally free yourself from creative gridlock.

How Creative Bottlenecks Block Growth

An image of a droid frozen on a task, symbolizing the inertia of a bottleneck.

Research shows that design-driven companies grow revenues at nearly twice (2X) the rate of their competitors and that nearly 75% of campaign performance is linked to the quality of the creative.

Although marketers and creatives share similar frustrations with design bottlenecks—they experience them from different perspectives. 

Dysfunction occurs when creative teams, no matter their size or structure, are treated like short-order chefs—with the expectation of Michelin-star quality.

The backlogs created by this misalignment have consequences that reach much further than missed deadlines. When you can’t produce strategic, quality creative quickly and at scale—you can’t push any other revenue-generating activities forward either. 

  • Digital ad testing and optimization suffers when your performance marketing team can't get the hundreds of ad and other design assets, sized and formatted for varying platforms.
  • Integrated campaigns are weaker when the creative concepts have been rushed and the development of assets such as ads, content, emails, landing pages and corresponding elements are delayed.
  • You're less likely to stand out on social media when you don't have time to try new tactics, such as investing in video for TikTok or YouTube.
  • Branding efforts stall because there's not enough time to give developing guidelines or exploring a refresh the attention they deserve.

Name a marketing activity or team and the theme repeats.

As bottlenecks worsen, tensions rise and morale drops—along with the quality of the creative concepts and designs themselves. Requesting teams feel frustrated, and the creative team feels each miss just as strongly. With the extra mental and emotional stress, everyone becomes less invested in solving problems and earning those much-needed wins.

Creative Teams Are Overwhelmed

An infographic that states: 82% of Internal Creative Teams Say the Sheer Volume of Design Requests Continues to Increase—all at the cost of strategy. Two thirds of creatives feel they can't be more strategic due to being overloaded.

"Agile, responsive creative is a must-have for big, complex and rapidly evolving companies like ours. A CaaS solution offering really hits the nail on the head for us."

Tatjana Milnovic
Tatjana MilnovicGlobal Brand Strategist, Infobip

Even when creative teams have hired versatile and strategic talent, aligned key performance indicators (KPIs) and implemented as many efficiencies as possible—the demand for creative services still exceeds what they’re physically able to supply.

As a result, nearly two-thirds of creative teams find that all of this comes at the cost of strategy, quality and key business objectives.

Creative Teams Can’t Just Hire Their Way Out

"The CaaS model is a great fit for growing companies that appreciate talent density, yet prefer to be agile and maintain a low headcount. It feeds perfectly into our test-and-learn loops, and we are thankful to have found Superside's solution."

Kimberley Losey
Kimberley Losey CMO, Rapid Robotics

In tough times, hiring is impossible. In the best of times, it's slow and expensive. Even with additional headcount, you can’t hire for every creative capability you’ll need—and it’s equally impossible to predict what skills you’ll require six to twelve months from now. With these challenges, it's no wonder outsourced capabilities are an essential lifeline.

Outsourcing Design Services is Essential

Hybrid models are the new normal, with internal teams becoming more strategic about which creative needs they keep in-house and what they outsource to design services partners.

Based on creative needs and the team structure, companies may focus on outsourcing production work, key strategic projects where they have gaps, or a mix of both.

This is why more and more companies are looking for an outsourced design partner who’ll help produce quality creative at scale, making the most of the time and money invested.

Agencies and Freelancers Are Only Partial Solutions

Infographic showing that ,unlike agencies and freelancers, only Creative-as-a-Service (CaaS) is purpose-built to scale design and fuel growth.

Traditional outsourced creative partners, like agencies and freelancers, work well for specific projects requiring niche skills.

For example, you might hire a brand design agency for a brand refresh, then hire a web designer to apply the new brand to your website and engage yet another agency to bring your new brand to life on social.

Disjointed solutions like this are not only cumbersome and expensive—they also require copious amounts of precious time to ensure everything comes together.

It’s literally like working each project piece by piece—instead of solving the whole puzzle.

Both also require significant time investments for sourcing and management. First, you have to find the right agency or freelancer. Then you have to onboard them. With every request, you’re almost starting over each time.

Enter CaaS—A Creative Subscription Model Built for Speed, Scale and Quality

CaaS liberates you from the shackles of overtaxed in-house teams and helps you move quickly with infinite scale.

What is CaaS? It’s the natural evolution of what’s needed to meet today’s design-driven needs—a singular combination of talent, technology and flexibility, ideally suited to drive growth.

All CaaS solutions have the same basic components:

  • Remote talent: By leveraging geographically distributed creative talent, CaaS offers a comprehensive range of creative capabilities and round-the-clock coverage.
  • Collaborative online technology: Requests, projects and feedback take place within online tools. Depending on the provider, various levels of support are available. 
  • Subscription pricing: Similar to Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), CaaS is provided through subscription-based pricing. (This is why you’ll sometimes also see CaaS referred to as Creative-as-a-Subscription.)

CaaS brings you the best of the agency and freelancer models—without all the limitations and hassles.

Allowing for greater flexibility and agility alongside predictable planning and transparent budgeting, it's the fastest, most efficient and cost-effective way for marketing and creative teams—or any team—to get creative done.

Putting CaaS to Work for You

A rocket ship illustration, representing Creative-as-a-Service (CaaS), breaking through barriers.

"Superside's CaaS model covers us from a myriad of angles and helps our creative team achieve more with less."

Corey Pomkoski
Corey Pomkoski Director, Creative Operations, DocuSign

When Superside was founded in 2015, we knew there had to be a better way to get creative done.

Existing outsourcing models were ripe for transformation. The entire process—from how design requests were received and briefed to how they were sourced and delivered—was broken.

Since then, we've worked with customers, like Amazon, PointCard, Salesforce and many others, to bypass design bottlenecks and fuel growth—completing more than 70,000 creative projects in the past three years.

An infographic that explains that Superside's CaaS model drives growth through creative that performs, greater agility and responsiveness, elevated teams, cost-effectiveness and time-savings.

Superside not only sets the standard for CaaS—we define it.

We've pioneered the CaaS model, building the best all-in-one outsourced creative solution that lets you:

  • Get compelling creative that performs: Our global talent pool represents the top 1% of design talent worldwide that provides a comprehensive range of creative services and exceptional expertise, including strategy and concept development.
  • Be more agile and responsive: Seize opportunities instead of sidelining them with flexible subscription plans purpose-built for unlimited scale—including turnarounds in as little as 12 to 24 hours.
  • Elevate your creative team (and every team): We give each customer a dedicated creative project manager and creative lead that makes it easy to take things off your team's plate, ensures work stays on brand and provides a continuous source of inspiration.
  • Make the most of every dollar: Rather than piecing together solutions, you can save time and rely on Superside for creative projects of any size—whether strategic, production-driven or both—at scale.

You can't afford design bottlenecks that leave revenue on the table. That's why we've made sure there's a better way to get the creative you need—on demand, on time and on budget. We're here to chase the sun and bring you the moon so that everyone—from marketers and creatives to human resources and stakeholders of any kind—can access world-class creative.

Goodbye, Blockers. Hello, Growth!
Goodbye, Blockers. Hello, Growth!
Is CaaS a Fit for You?

Goodbye, Blockers. Hello, Growth!

Tell us what’s getting in the way of scaling your design and we’ll tell you how we can help. We’ll explain how our Creative-as-a-Subscripion model works and how it will work best for you.

Fredrik Thomassen
Fredrik ThomassenCEO
As co-founder and CEO of Superside, Fredrik cares deeply about leveling the playing field for creatives around the world. His vision is to find, onboard, and upskill top talent, connecting them with opportunities where they shine. This recruiting strategy coupled with Superside's collaborative tech platform gives rise to a subscription service focused on delivering reliable creative performance — one that consistently earns a whopping 95% customer satisfaction (CSAT) score.
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