never time to do it right; always time to do it over

An advertising mantra from years past. What it means is one or more of the following:

  • We have moved up the deadline and we have to go to press /print / online / tweet / etc. tomorrow.
  • We ain’t got the budget to do our original idea, so we’ll go with something no one likes.
  • I (the client) know nothing about advertising so I’ll give you $4,000.00 up front and you design something that may drive clients to my small, rented office space.
  • My small, family owned company has been in business for more than a century and we are the sole providers (sole means no one else does what we do!) of a service to the United States Government. You will not find that fact anywhere on our new and improved web site.
  • What we publish and sell to our clients is incomplete and replete with errors, but they don’t know. They still pay us and our staff still sends it out the door. What’s to worry?

The World B.I. (Before the Internet)

At one time many, many years ago in a mighty land there were three established ways to get your message (individual or corporate) out to the masses. They were print (newspaper,magazines, etc.), TV (three major channels) and radio (primarily music based which lent itself to 30-second commercials only.) And people believed in and used professionals like Mad Men to get out their message to those fawning masses.

The World Now

There was nothing wrong with Mad Men. Watch the show. They are a team. A team with major dysfunctions at times, but a team nonetheless. They helped each other. Bounced ideas off one another. Took grief from one another.

“But I have web access and Adobe and a blog and a cloud and I can write anything and draw anything and send it to anybody and….”

If you are a lousy artist and have “state-of-the art” software, what you will produce is really lousy art, real fast.

The Team’s the Thing

To play on the words of Shakespeare’s Prince. And it’s the thing because unless you are a Picasso you probably can benefit from the input and advice of others. You’re in an insurance company. You need to have an on-line presence. So you have a web site. It’s pretty passive. Sure, download a form, submit a question, but it’s passive.

Brainstorm! Let’s have a company blog. Who will write the post? Assign the roles and responsibilities? Monitor the subscribers and replies? And do your full-time day job?

A Better Way to Blog

The company has a number of employees  (Subject Matter Experts) in various departments such as sales, marketing, personal lines (of insurance), commercial lines (of insurance), claims and processing. So form a team. Set up a blog with free hosting, develop a plan (also called an editorial calendar) assign roles and responsibilities and with a little work and some time passing the company could have an active, multi-channel presence. The company could have their own social media team! Their own Mad Men!

Think about it. Go it alone and curse every time you have to write for that stupid blog, or be part of a creative team, a team with dysfunctions at times, but a team nonetheless. That helps one another, bounces ideas off one another and takes grief from one another. But a team that gets the job done.

With a team of responsible people, decent tools and a grasp of the needs of your audience, a body could do worse than starting a collaborative blog. Think about it.

Comments welcomed.


About Bob McCarthy

Originally from the Northeast, I now call Southwest Florida home. I have been a professional copywriter and editor since 1979, both freelance and in house. I have had article published in regional, national and international magazines. Plus, a video for which I wrote the script won an industry award as Best Training Video.
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