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Unarmed & Dangerous

In the business world it’s often very easy to get carried away with an idea and run long and hard with it. And it happens more often than you might think. Why? Because ideas are seductive. They’re attractive. And if you have what you think is a good idea, it’s very easy to convince yourself that it’s the be all and end all that’s going to make your brand famous and build your business to astronomical heights.

But what if the idea turns out to be wrong. What if it simply sails over everybody’s head? What if it doesn’t do the job you thought it would do? What if, instead of being the be all and end all that you convinced yourself it would be. It turns out to the torpedo that ends up sinking your ship?

The Strategic Imperative

The smarter companies out there in the business world are not the companies that are prone to falling blindly in love with ideas that fly in out of the blue, or even ideas that feel like they could be right from the outset. No, the smarter companies out there have a little three word exercise they go through, before they even start thinking about ideas and their execution. It’s called “Build The Strategy”.

One of our writers had the honour of working for and getting to know Canadian advertising and marketing legend Jerry Goodis. “Jerry had a rather large plaque on his desk that was beautifully engraved in brass on a fine wood base. It faced out at the creative people who sat across from him in meetings and it simply said. ‘You’re not going anywhere without a strategy!’”

Obviously all of us at Rapport feel very much the same way. And that is why we have formalized the strategic development part of our business, with unique processes like The Rapport Marketing Map and The Essential Message.

These strategically focused processes do three very important things for us at the beginning of any relationship or major project:

  • They allow us to work with our clients to examine the opportunity from a purely strategic point of view.
  • They allow us to develop both a rapport with our client and a deeper understanding of the challenges being faced.
  • They equip us to create ideas that are going to be most relevant to the target groups we are addressing, and therefore be able to promote the clients product and or service in the most responsible and ROI-oriented way possible.

Armed & Dangerous

Every product or service in every market has a certain set of properties that appeal to certain segments of the B2B or B2C community. A very important first step in the development of any communications is to identify those key benefits, the reasons why those benefits are believable and the target groups to whom communication supporting those benefits mean the most.

On the surface it all sounds a little dry and academic. But ideas, especially hard working business building ideas don’t come out of nowhere. They come from exactly the type of strategic analysis that we have made a part of our development process here at Rapport.

We like to think that these processes are great learning opportunities for us and for our clients, especially those who are running entrepreneurial businesses and tend to carry much of this information around in their heads, but may often have a difficult time communicating it to the people whom they have chosen to help them with their marketing.

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