Over the years I worked for countless brands in the social media and online marketing space. Those brands ranged from products that have been in almost everyone's fridge at one point in their lives or have been used to pay at any given store every now and then. You may also have worn their clothes or shoes. Or you’ve been one of the people who’ve been to one of their shows?
Who knows, but the point is: The list is long and it included very short and very long brand names. I am talking brand names made out of 3, 4 or sometimes even more words.
In the past year, I stopped working for that many different brands and started focusing on those, that I really loved. That’s when I discovered the tiny detail that is subject to this very articles headline.
I often referred to clients names in self made short forms or nicknames. Not only in conversations or emails, but also in the thousands and thousands of files that had to be named.
Back then I didn't think anything of it. There was a lot of work to be done, a lot of time pressure and often without the benefit of a client's feedback. There wasn't always a direct, close relationship to the client either, so for the sake of saving time, for the sake of relieving a bit of stress and probably also because it was just how agencies always did it, short forms were being used.
“It was the creation of something that they have found meaningful.” -Nico Schweinzer
These days I don't have any less pressure, there’s not any more time in the day than before, but and that's a BIG BUT: I have a close relationship with my clients and they show real appreciation for all the extra effort that I put in for them. And because of it, I started honoring their names.
I honor their names also, because back when those brands were founded, when the initial spark for their great ideas ignited, the founders had a magical moment. A moment that lead to the work and collaboration that I am lucky enough to be a part of today. It was the creation of something that they have found meaningful.
“Knowing is not feeling.” -Nico Schweinzer
With every xyz_v3.jpg that you send and every other shortform mentions that you write, you potentially making your client kind of anonymous and ridicule its name. Now don't get me wrong, I am aware that you still know what your shortform means. But knowing is not feeling.
I want to feel the brand with every contact that I have with it. If I name a file or mention the brand name in an email, I write the full, long, form of it. I do it for some reasons:
- Every Time my inner ear hears the full name in the same way my clients customers would hear it, when they get advertised or simply read the brand name somewhere.
- Everytime my inner ear hears the full name, I ask myself “is what I am sending them worthy for what this brand represents?”.
- Everytime my inner ear hears the full name, I think a little bit of the history of that brand and, lets be honest, of the name on the bill — because a paid bill means a lot more than just money. It means “thank you” and “we trust you” as well as “your work is worth that amount to us”.
I encourage you to try it. It may sound like I am making a big thing out of nothing, but the reality is that its a small, daily habit which is very easy to learn. It takes almost no energy other than typing 1 or 2 seconds longer. It will make you feel better about your work, when you’re commiting to writing not only your name but the clients name under it and last but not least, you’ll have an easier time searching for that 5 months old file that someone suddenly needs.
Dont think your clients will realize this detail about you and dont expect anything from it, other that your own way of thinking and working is changing slightly to the better (or not). For me, it did.
Thx4reading (or should I say: Thank you for reading?) :)
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