The other day I got this really great post card in the mail from a store I shop at frequently. I won’t show it to you to protect the innocent, but here’s the gist:
The post card was beautiful, a gorgeous design. The store was having a special sale for its best customers: hosting an open house at the store, champagne, goodies, special hours, special discounts, giveaways, the whole shebang. Don’t get me wrong, if this store was a client of mine I wouldn’t have told them to do anything different—except one thing, the post card was missing the logo and address! OOPS!
Branding elements help your marketing.
The marketer in me was crushed. Luckily, as a frequent shopper I recognized other branding elements they regularly used in printed promotions. Things like color, fonts, even the tone of the message gave me clues to where this post came from. But just imagine all the people who had no idea where this special event was being held.
You might think, “How could this happen in marketing?”
This store does lots of advertising, so how could this possibly happen? As is usually the case, it was a simple oversight. The store owner wrote down all the event details and zipped them off in an email to a printer to “design” the postcard. The graphics person over at the printer simply copied the information from the email and laid it out in a design. Job accomplished, beautiful design, proofread twice. But a really big piece of the marketing was missing and the whole thing is a flop! Marketers are trained and instinctively know to address the 5 Ws.
- What – CHECK
- When – CHECK
- Why – CHECK
- Where – MISSING!
- Who – MISSING!
Marketing mistakes can be costly.
Now the store really had a problem. The cost of designing, printing, and fulfillment was a complete waste. I called the store to ask if the mailing I received was from them. The surprised, confused, and embarrassed owner hadn’t even realized the error. She was challenged with several costly options: re-print and re-mail, have her employees spend days calling the over 2,500 customers who received the mailing, print signs, send emails, advertise. All unexpected and unplanned for expenses for an event that was more about thanking her best customers than an immediate increase in sales.
And don’t forget the marketing pro.
Here’s a little unadulterated self-promotion: This is why EVH Marketing is in business.
Is it possible to execute a successful marketing campaign in-house, without hiring a marketing firm? Sure. But, if you do, be sure to look at every individual component to your campaign from the customer/recipient’s perspective. Make sure all the details and all the information is easy to find, easy to read, and very clear. Double-check everything and just before it goes out the door check it again.