Pop Quiz

1. What would be the typical budget for one basic 30-second local TV commercial?

2. What would the budget be for a national campaign with a marquee director?

3. About how much would it cost to book an hour at a recording studio for a radio spot?

4. How much can you expect a decent voiceover talent to charge for an hour?

As a junior creative, you'll never have to answer these questions. You can easily let your creative directors and producers deal with the numbers, while you and your partner go to Starbucks and come up with the big ideas.

But be aware that your ECD does know the answers to these questions. So does your CD. And your ACD. And your client.

Do you really want to be left out of the loop just because you're "a creative"?

TRY THIS: Early in my career, I kept a file full of old invoices for projects I'd worked on. I knew how much illustrators charged per frame, and what a normal lighting overage was on a shoot. It didn't take any extra brain power and it didn't turn me from a creative guy into an account man. It just helped me understand our industry a little faster.

You don't have to be an account person to be smart about the accounts you work on.