Rush jobs: more pre-thought can give you great payback

Today, marketing communication finds rush jobs are now par for the course. In fact, we can even consider them as a given.“If I want it tomorrow, I’ll order it tomorrow.” This is not a real statement from a client, but many times, it feels that it may as well be.As the pressures of making do with less resources hit harder, businesses are doing with less people. Many are wearing several hats and juggling more work at the one time. Multi-tasking is now a given at most workplaces.So, you need a marketing communication and what do you do? Prepare the job on the last day before, or worse, on deadline.Sound familiar? It’s no joke.Last October, I got a call on my mobile from a client who wanted an ad prepared. I asked him when he needed it. “This afternoon,” he said. I apologised that I was unable to help, I was out of town. I also did not bring a computer. But, even if I did so, my files are on my desktop computer, an Apple Mac, in one of several external drives.It’s hard to bring all of those files around when travelling. But, I digress.Careful thought and planning will payback bigtime in making a marketing communication work.And, I don’t mean about getting the photos, background material and so on, but on more basic things. Who do you want to influence? What is the message? What do you want to achieve? This sort of thing.Sometimes just preparing the message is the objective, when one should really consider, why the message is needed in the first place.Are you after a simple reminder about your products or services? Do you want to start a sales campaign? Maybe, a corporate ad campaign? A one shot offer?Whatever you want to achieve, has to be front of mind before doing anything. The message that is developed is based strongly on the purpose of the message.If you booked an ad, which is due soon, or worse, now due, is not the reason for an ad. A better reason is the one you had when you booked it in the first place.An old printer friend, many years ago once told me: “Price, quality, speed. Pick two.”I’m not saying that you can’t have all three, but usually if you are in a hurry, you should allow for something to give. Quality may suffer, or be prepared to pay more for a rush job. Or, wait a while, but take advantage of a less costly job. You get my drift.If you brief a marketing communication practitioner to help with a job, plan your brief. Make sure you cover all bases. And, give him time to execute the job.A good practitioner should be able to fill in the blanks when receiving a brief, no matter how sketchy. But, think of how much better a job you will get if you give him a better brief and enough time to do the job.And, it won’t hurt to step back and consider the why’s and wherefore’s. In the end, a different communication piece may be called for. Or, maybe not required at all at this time.Worth considering, isn’t it?

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