How many times has your team worded and re-worded the same claims across all of your promotional materials? If it’s a frequent occurrence, and if it’s accompanied by problems finding the right references, you may want to utilize core claims documents. 

The idea of core claims documents has been around for a while, but if your team hasn’t been using them, here’s how to get started.

What is a core claims document?

A core claims document (CCD), also known as a claims compendium or a brand book, is a central location for all claims a product’s promotional materials can use, along with references for each claim. When your team creates new pieces, they can reference a CCD to find relevant claims. 

The benefits of using core claims documents

There are three main benefits to keep in mind when deciding whether CCDs are right for your team:

benefits of a core claims document

CCDs provide clarity
If you don’t currently use a CCD, your team may be making the same mistakes across their promotional materials, leading to extra review time to resolve issues. Your team may also be resolving issues differently, which creates inconsistencies across materials. A CCD solves this problem by making it easy to check how a claim should be worded and what references to use. In other words, a CCD provides clarity, and clarity lessens the likelihood of mistakes, increases consistency, and helps maintain compliance.

CCDs help onboard new team members
The centralized location of CCDs also makes knowledge transfer easier when your team changes. For example, if you’re onboarding a new reviewer, you can use a CCD as a resource to provide education around the claims you use, along with rules and reasoning for your decisions.

CCDs make reviews faster
The biggest benefit is that CCDs can significantly reduce review time. When copywriters have a CCD to reference, they don’t have to write new claims copy or dig for references for every promotional piece, which makes preparing for review faster. Also, by creating a CCD, your team members agree to the claims you can make ahead of time, which simplifies and speeds up approval times.

Despite these benefits, CCDs need dedicated time–both to develop a first version and update it over time. Keep this in mind as we walk through the steps on how to create one.

How to create a core claims document

1. Set up a team
Decide who will create and review the first version of a CCD. This may be similar to the review team you’d use for a specific product’s promotional pieces. Also, decide who will be responsible for maintaining the CCD long term. This role is critical to making sure the CCD continues to be your one source of truth.

2. Decide on a format
Decide how you will organize the information. Usually, companies will have one CCD per product. But do you also need to consider region-specific CCDs? For example, will you create one CCD for global use, and separate region-specific CCDs? Or will one document, maybe with countries specified for each claim, suffice? Similarly, how will you specify which audience a claim is approved for?

3. Create your CCD
Gather the claims you plan to use, along with references. You can start this process from scratch, but if you have a product that’s already launched, you can use the claims in an existing promotional piece as your starting point.

In addition to the claim and its references, include any rules on how the claim should be used. You can also consider including notes on how decisions were made around claim usage, which may be useful when you re-review a CCD in the future.

Include wording variations of a claim to support all types of content. For example, you may want to use a shorter or longer-worded claim depending on whether you’re creating an advertisement or a web page.

4. Review and approve your CCD
Have your team review the CCD. Gather feedback, make revisions, and finalize the document. Then let everyone know it’s ready to use. Moving forward, content creators can leverage your CCD to expedite their approval process and get content to market faster. 

5. Set a schedule for ongoing maintenance
Decide how frequently your team should review and update the CCD. Review frequency will vary depending on how long your product has been around. If your product was recently launched, available references are likely still growing and changing, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to refine your CCD. However, if your product is mature, you may already have a set of established references. 

Assign one person to lead the re-review process and schedule. Remember, a CCD is only useful if the team can trust that it’s up to date.

And that’s it—you’ve set your team up for success with your first CCD.

How Pepper Flow helps you manage CCDs

When you add CCDs into the Pepper Flow Library, you provide your team one central location to search for and view CCDs. This one source of truth means it’s easier to find the latest guidance for the claims you need.

Adding CCDs to Pepper Flow also allows you to take advantage of other features that help improve your process. For example, Pepper Flow makes it easier to find promotional documents that need to be updated after you update a claim. 

Interested in learning more about how to improve your promotional review process? Check out some additional content and resources. If you’re ready to learn more about Pepper Flow, check out our demo video or contact us for a personalized demonstration.