Friday, December 31, 2010

Your next client: Diagnosis

Diagnosis (from ancient Greek διάγνωσις = discernment) is the identification of the nature and cause of anything. Diagnosis is used in many different disciplines with variations in the use of logicsanalytics, and experience to determine the cause and effect relationships. In systems engineering and computer science, diagnosis is typically used to determine the causes of symptoms, mitigations for problems, and solutions to issues.

Some thoughts about engaging your next client. Entering into a client relationship presents opportunity, new understanding and often prestige as your organization attracts profile business that reflects on who you are and your company's reputation and leadership in the market. 

Navigating through the sales cycle and winning new business is a rewarding process.
Here's three areas that have an impact on how you bring onboard new clients and build successful relationships: diagnosis, voice and pain relief. Starting this week with...

    The diagnosis begins when we're asked to evaluate our client’s unique requirement, define the mandate and eventually present. Depending on how this unique dynamic is cast, the effort sets important ground rules for secure relations and proper engagement or unfortunately, unfolds with a pass. What is evident along the way and from years past, another "ship" will sail to port. 

    The movement online has shifted the playing field. The web universe, which has been disruptive in many business segments extends opportunities to leverage client brand. Online offers new distribution channels, expansion of market presence and global awareness. The transition for many organizations requires a renewed emphasis on leadership. The online universe is a crowded space with lots of noise and mixed signals. Careful review of the client's service line will validate how to proceed online and what social utilities should be adopted.

    Empathy and Authenticity
    Diagnosis includes review of emotional factors and how these elements are integral to the user experience combined with functional engineering of online technology. What level of focus has been placed on the organizations language and choice of words? What is the nature of personality conveyed within the existing messaging? Has the choice of words written aligned with market demographics, stakeholders and audiences? Aligning properly with the client organization requires an understanding of their unique attributes and the emotional drivers regarding their identity in the market. Qualifying this, is a crucial step for effective strategic counsel and brand building.

    Functional Performance
    A diagnostic of the client organization may result in questions about search engine optimization, conversion versus bounce rates, multi variate testing, the lowering of "cost of acquisition". The intent here is to validate where opportunities reside that will ensure greater value to your client. The function of any online solution relies on stable engineering, analytics and performance measurement. 

    The path forward requires a map or framework that outlines a reliable program around guidelines of cost, delegated authority, level of expertise from within and amount of time required taking the product to market. 

    Empathy and authenticity goes to the core of successful introductions and long term relations. Understanding the organization's voice as a construct of brand, combined with diagnosis of existing technology and related platforms, finally, bringing leadership through effective management will support long term client relations. 

    Next in the series... Voice

    Sunday, December 5, 2010

    Design and Filmmaking Teams

    Starting out in early December with two teams underway working toward client design objectives. 
    Two gordongroup teams have been underway all weekend carefully managing and navigating through critical paths for the days ahead.

    Residential Design & Brand

    One team includes our Creative Director and Senior Design lead. We’re engaged on real estate condominium brand and marketing. The second team with Senior Producer / Project Management support is embarking on a documentary filmmaking tour, celebrating the leadership among the James Bay Northern Quebec Crees.

    Branding property development has been a tradition among our team for a number of years. We love having conversations with the Architect, Marketing Executives, Asset Managers, Owners of developments as well as other stakeholders who give us their perspective in order to define the essence of what makes properties outstanding within their unique community. Conversations about how the envisioned development can utilize design and timeless brand to create aspirational response from future residents who will call the location home. 

    Clients who understand the value of design and how world-class design leverages their investments partner with our team. The collaborative effort is actually momentous to witness as conceptual notions and design thinking transforms into market outreach toward stabilizing the property. We witness the property come out of the ground as the team effort drives a surge in sales or eventual leaseholds ensuring the covenant is met. The result is a change in the city scape with new dwellings adding to the community.

    We're currently engaged with a visionary developer here in Ottawa and the leading Real Estate marketing enterprise nation wide. The launch takes place later in the week, at what promises to be the first of many great Q West events to come.

    Our proprietary approach to developing identities by extension crafting stories and delivering marketing tools is sharpened from experience naming and branding real estate nationally. Another partner Bentall Investment Management of Vancouver engaged gordongroup during 2005/07. We developed identities and online brand solutions that contribute toward making their portfolio of homes in Canada unique.

    "The denser we make our cities the more we can sustain ecosystems", 
    Bruce Mau, Phaidon 2004

    Preservation and Filmmaking History

    Our second team comprised of Film Director and Crew depart this week to record stories and personalities on locations in James Bay Northern Quebec. We're filming individual’s who were trailblazers and exerted great influence during the 1970 and 80s. period. The Crees at that time built a foundation for growth for future generations. We’re preserving their memories for the future and for people interested in Canadian Northern Culture. The intent is to deliver empowering, educational and leading perspectives from interviews from people who witnessed  the transformation and impact of development in their lands. Unlike anything experienced in Canada’s north, perhaps unlike anything internationally the Crees asserted their Rights four decades ago and ensured governments upheld commitments. As a result today the Crees have extraordinary rein and leadership. They have protected their traditional way of life which is  largely unknown to most Canadians. The James Bay Crees are using innovation and digital recording to ensure their history is preserved and depicted authentically.

    "Each of the four wind persons resides at one of the four points of the compass, and each has specific personal characteristics related to particular seasons, weather and animal patterns, hunting conditions, and success".
    Harvey Feit, McCelland & Stewart 1995