I will be the first to scream from the hilltops that a proposal cover photo or slideshow background color will not win or lose a pursuit, but I do believe that the way your collateral material looks says a lot about your firm. Below are the five reasons why you should take a hard (objective) look at your marketing collateral and ask yourself if it does the following.
- Catch the Readers’ Attention-Like it or not, as human beings we are attracted to visual images/appearances first. This is true in dating, networking, book covers, ads, etc. Visually attractive objects attract our attention and make us read further—the number one reason for marketing collateral.
- Convey the Right First Impression-Our first impression often comes from the visual appearance of objects. Ask yourself, when you meet someone from the first time what you are first thoughts about them pop in your mind even before shaking hands?
- Express your Key Sales Messages-You may be thinking that I am really stretching on this one. Let’s try this. Take five business cards from other firms you have stacked on your desk. Take a look at each and think about what their reception area in their office looks like based only what the business card looks like. Do you think it is industrial with metal and glass, woodsy with mahogany and leather furniture, or institutional with pale gray walls and rows of cubicles? It really doesn’t matter if you’re right. What matters is the impression of that firm you got just based on one business card. If your sales message is to be on the cutting edge of industry technology that provides clients with new solutions, shouldn’t the readers get that impression by how your materials look?
- Strengthen your Brand-This was probably a reason you were expecting me to list. All of your marketing materials should follow your style and editorial guidelines. This is especially true if you operate in many geographical locations and service offerings.
- Develop Better Content-If you have a set of attractive marketing material templates and style and editorial guide you use, it will take less time and effort to develop layouts. Your limited marketing resources can be focused on developing creative, client- and/or pursuit-specific content.
Take action today. Take a look at all of your materials that your clients and potential clients see (website, business card, email signature, etc.) and honestly ask yourself if they are conveying the tone, look, and design that you are striving for. If they are, GREAT! If they are not spot on, think about what is missing the mark and/or consult a graphic designer or branding expert to help get you on track ASAP. If you need any recommendations, please contact me today.