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Sometimes Old Is Just Old

Does your company have marketing materials that have been sitting around for years? We do and sometimes you find out they are being used out of the blue.

I recently received a “brochure” that was 29 pages long. The book – at 29 pages it’s hard to refer to it as a brochure – was almost entirely text with maybe 25 small images in total. Block fonts, full justification, disoriented information, no branding, no context and no flow. It was a marketing package by name only and would likely cause us to lose more projects than win.

The material was at least five years old, likely originally drafted 10+ years ago. During that time rules and legislations have changed, how money is made available has changed even the services we deliver to the market segment has changed. Did the brochure show any of that? Nope.

After some back and forth we agreed that creating new material is the way to go. Our internal processes allow for a quick turn around and the finished product will be something staff will be proud to share. The interesting part is how we got here in the first place. Unfortunately there is not always an easy answer.

In this example, key team members all have updated materials and work with marketing regularly. They had engaged another person in the company but didn’t share with them the materials and so without asking any questions, these “newbies” found a brochure on an old server and started using it. There was a communication breakdown for you sure however should they have known better? Yes. Should they have been told where to find materials? Yes. Once it was known that they were using the materials should someone on the team have told them to stop? Absolutely!

Over the years our firm has moved to a central repository for materials from a local office specific server. This makes it easy to control what is available and ensures staff access only up-to-date materials. However, there is little control on the local servers and so materials can live on forever if unnoticed. It certainly reminded me that we need to stay in the face of our staff regarding how we market or all the work we put into building our brand may quickly be eroded by an overzealous staff member.

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