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December 21, 2012

Make Every Page Count

December 21, 2012

"Make Every Page Count" will be SmallBox's rallying cry in 2013. If we do this one thing it will fundamentally evolve, and change, the way this company works.

What is a page? It is a piece of content. It is a web page. It is a blog. It is a design. It is an email newsletter. It is a tweet, a Facebook post. It is any one thing we publish for ourselves or our clients.

How will we make every page count?

Above all, pages must support their organization. As much as possible, they must be fully owned by the organization and spoken in their language, coming from their distinct culture. Not from our language or culture- they should not look, sound or feel like SmallBox.

This is why organizational health is so important. An unhealthy organization has an unhealthy voice, no-one wants to listen to an unhealthy voice.

A healthy organization trusts and empowers their employees to be brand ambassadors. In doing so they activate a formidable army that crafts and carries the organization's message out in to the world. But many organizations are not ready for this "new" way of marketing. It could do more harm than good to activate an unhealthy army.

So until an organization reaches this threshold of health the old ways of marketing must be used to support the organization while it heals. We must exercise extreme humility when we work to heal organizations knowing that we still struggle with our own health at times. No-one is perfect and no organization is 100% healthy. We must openly share our struggles as much as we share our successes. We must enlist trusted organizational health partners when we get out of our depth.

I have said in the past that we don't serve our client we serve their customer, I was wrong. We need to serve our clients first and in doing so they will better serve their customers. I have seen this with SmallBox. The healthier we are the better we serve our clients.

So to better serve our clients we will focus on making every page count. This is a very tangible thing, something we can measure. A page that "counts" will create measurable value and have a distinct purpose. It will always start with understanding its "why" before moving to its "how" and "what". We must challenge each page's existence- why do we need this page? What is it adding?

Every page must be spoken in the voice of the organization it supports. It will mean we spend more time getting to know an organization, collaborating with them to find their voice and then training them on tools to speak in that voice across all platforms. We will move from fishing for the client to teaching them how to fish.

We will look to have our client's "graduate" as we fall into a supportive, consulting role. We will encourage client's owning their own marketing efforts. We know that a healthy organization's voice should come from within the organization not from the outside. Although we hope to always provide value to clients we will be happy and proud to see the training wheels come off and the organization begin moving forward on its own.

We will not be able to make this pivot overnight. It will take time. The key is focus and persistence. We must completely commit ourselves to it.

But I am 100% convinced that if we can make every page count we will produce work that truly serves our client's organizations and that we can be proud of.

This post is part of Think Kit by SmallBox
Today's prompt: “Write a mantra for the year ahead - how you'll approach it, what you wish it to be. How'd you arrive at the mantra?"

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