What kind of a question is that?
Ugh. I hate the invasion of the west coast American buzz words and irritating intonation, it’s pervasive. Anyway, this isn’t a rant about cultural identity, I’ll do that another time: this is a short post on a mini-marketing campaign I came across in one of those non-descript business hotels just off a motorway.
I was there for a board meeting. A room had been hired. Teas, coffees, biscuits. The hire fee wasn’t exactly cheap, but wasn’t going to break the bank either. And the place was happily convenient for a group of people all coming from different directions. So far so good. Board meeting went off without too many terse exchanges between warring factions, which was also good. And then I went to the loo.
Trapped in a cubicle forced to look at the advertisement on the back of the door: What’s not to like? it demanded. Asking for a ‘like’ on the wretched Facebook.
I wasn’t in there long (only a pee, thank you very much) but long enough to think about the poster.
As you know I don’t like Americanisms (I just told you that at the beginning, come on concentrate!) – what’s wrong with good old Anglo Saxon? (Ok – don’t be so nit picky – with Latin, French and a bit of Greek thrown in for good measure.) So my heckles were already up.
Well, here’s what was not to like:
- The room was barely clean – the chairs were not in place and there was an old presentation on the flip chart from someone else’s meeting
- There weren’t enough cups for the places round the board table (had to get up and get more)
- The coffee was weak and cold
- There was not enough milk (had to get up and get more)
- The biscuits were nondescript things wrapped in cellophane you needed your teeth to wrestle open
- The room was down one of the longest corridors in the world and there was no signage to direct.
OK so the pencils were plentiful, there was paper to write on, there were sweeties on the table, the chairs were comfy (always a blessing for board meetings) and there were enough bottles of water on the table. The service at reception was delightful, personal, warm. The offending ‘ladies’ was clean, sophisticated and had nice posh hand cream, fresh flowers and a full length mirror. Oh and little soft-as-a-cloud individual hand towels.
But I wasn’t asked what I liked about the room, I was asked what there wasn’t to like – so that’s where my attention was directed.
See my point?
Where do you want to direct your customers’ and clients’ attention? To the things you do wickedly well? Or the things you may not have delivered on 100% this time?
If you think it’s smart to pick up a buzz word or phrase and plaster it all over your marketing materials then make sure it’s working FOR you and not AGAINST. Don’t take stuff at face value – think before you splash negative rubbish all over the place (loo doors, business cards, leaflets in reception).
What’s not to like (ughhhh) about this marketing?
Rant over, normal service will resume shortly.