Time for businesses to get their ducks in a row

How to ensure business success through communications

July 14, 2020

As a Brit one Americanism that I actually find quite charming is the idiom ‘get your ducks in a row.’ And as the world faces the Covid-19 crisis I think this saying is very pertinent. Ultimately there is another side, when the world does open up again, people start shopping, eating out and travelling to other countries. Yes, if you are stuck in your home under lockdown that may seem distant. However, the companies that will survive need to be making the right moves now to position themselves – getting their ducks in a row.

Whether your company is B2B or B2C or even Z2Z (OK I made that last one up!) now you need to be taking a good look at how you present yourself to the world. What do your premises look like, are they tidy or a mess? Do you use consistent branding from your signage, letterheads to website? Does your automated telephone system just create confusion to callers? Maybe it’s time to get those ducks quacking in perfect harmony.

Ultimately it all about communication, be it visual or of a message. As a professional writer over the last few days I have been researching some potential articles and I have been struck by a number of things. Increasingly websites have become the first point of contact with many companies and this is even more so under our current situation. While looking into final mile EV solutions I was surprised by how bad many company websites are.

After spending quite a few minutes on one website I was none the wiser what the company actually did! It was full of generic waffle and I really wasn’t sure who they were targeting and what they could do for them. One way around this is by producing case studies or profiles of successful projects. This shows what your company does and how it benefits the customer.

With another website it talked about forecasts for EV sales in a certain country by 2020. Well I have news for you, it is already 2020 and this year bites! The website seemed to have been created in 2017 and the public face appears to show the company has done absolutely nothing in the last three years. A simple solution would be to have a news section where the company can place updates on progress being made on the project – very useful if they want to get media coverage or find investors!

While a European EV producer had done quite a good job putting their website into English it was obviously not done by a native speaker and in places created unnecessary confusion. If you put your website into another language, even if you have employees that speak that language very well, you still need help from a native speaker. This may simply be just a matter of a bit of editing but your message will be so much the better for it. And this goes even more so for those tempted to go the machine translation route. While it can be quite amazing what Google Translate can produce – that ‘amazing’ is not always in a good way. Generally the more different the original language is from the target language the worse the result.

What can I do for you? Well if your website has design or structural problems I cannot fix them, however I can put you in contact with some very good web designers who can. But ultimately content is king, and that is my forte. I can provide content such as successful case studies, employee profiles or other news stories to boost the profile and understanding of your business. I can also edit or proofread your website – even if your employee is a native English speaker the chances are there are still probably mistakes with your website.

My areas of expertise lie with anything to do with transport, education, the tourism industry and food and drink. Having written about many other things I can probably also help you if your business doesn’t fall into one of these sectors. Let’s talk. Now is the time to act for when the world returns. Let’s get your ducks in a row.

Examples of my work can be seen on my website https://www.markeaandrews.com/ As you will see I have written for many well-known newspapers and magazines across the world. In addition I have helped companies such as Lancôme, Geely, Lenovo, Lincoln, AXA-Minmetals, Lenzing, BuroHappold, Schuco, and Kone with their communications needs.

Mark Andrews has written about everything from Japanese houses to heli hikes on New Zealand glaciers, test drives of Chinese cars to bar and restaurant reviews. He currently specialises in travel articles and reviews of Chinese cars plus articles about the Chinese auto industry.

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