Pennies Saved Means Dollars – and Message – Wasted

My husband works for a huge company – one of the largest corporations not just in Chicago, but globally. You would think that such a company would be extremely smart about their branding, both internal and external. You would think that they would spend exactly what should be spent – not a penny more or a penny less – to get their message across completely, without flubs and without too much fanfare.
Just yesterday, he received an envelope in the mail from his employer. That envelope contained a CD about the company’s new benefit program. And it was split into three pieces.
Because of the lack of quality in that envelope, the fact that there was no stiffness to the paper stock or stuffing to make it rigid, the CD was now completely useless. A penny or two was saved on the envelope and that destroyed the message, wasting the dollars spent on the program. Tony asked his co-workers about their CDs and every single one of them received it in 3 pieces.
The message sent now? That their employer is not careful, that they miss the details, that they are willing to save a penny or two at the risk of sacrificing the much bigger picture and bigger dollars.
The message businesses should take away: Pay attention, run a sample, find out what condition your marketing efforts will be in when they arrive in front of your audience. Does it still reflect what you wanted it to say? Does it make a positive statement about your company? Will it urge your audience to read, to think, to act?
It would have been nice to see that CD, to know just how those new benefits will help this company’s employees. But unless this is some radical new form of data encryption, a key to which will arrive in today’s mail, those employees will never know.