Wednesday, 20 August 2008

When big is too big

SimonYoungWriters is doing a couple of jobs for large organisations at the moment, and I feel a real sympathy for anyone involved in corporate comms.

Marketing has it slightly easier - they get to be all strategic most of the time, while comms have to know both strategy and detailed tactics.

Comms people have to keep in tension three big factors: the overall business goals, each department's competing goals, and finally the needs of the reader/viewer/consumer of the content they're producing!

That last one can be quite tricky. Not tricky to understand - just spend a day in your customer's shoes - but tricky to translate into strategy that all the competing elements in your organisation understand.

I'm not sure I have an answer. One could be to think small - I used that phrase when talking about advertising, but perhaps that thinking applies to other areas as well. Think entrepreneurial, while leveraging the scale of your organisation. That's what Air New Zealand and TVNZ are trying to do, and they seem to be doing pretty well with that. (By the way, check out our interview with TVNZ's Jason Paris on Jump In, where he goes into that aspect of TVNZ in some detail)

And then there's what Deloitte calls "Services Thinking", which I heard a podcast about this morning. Similar in concept to Service-Dominant Logic, but with an operational focus instead of marketing. Worth a listen.


Adrian said...

I think the service issue is a worthwhile avenue...

Think of the disconnect between the State story we love in the ads [JIT services, helping and supporting us in our daily lives] and the reality of call centres, unhelpful staff, complicated policies that benefit the insurer first.

That's where the think small: one customer, and services thinking can work for big companies.

It's always about the market of one.

Simon said...

It always has been, too. It's just that now social technologies are amplifying customer discontent to the point of discomfort for corporates.