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The Unconventional Guide To Content Management

Unconventional guide TO Content Management

I think every marketer has experienced it at least once. You look for an important piece of firm information, but it’s not readily available. Or at least, it’s not where you think it should be. So, you spend more time than you should trying to dig it up.

It’s not uncommon for even the smallest marketing department to deal with thousands of electronic files. Even if you have an information/content database, you will still have thousands of electronic files.

So, it’s important to set up a file structure that makes it easy to quickly find the files and information you need.

One of the biggest wins you can set yourself up for in the marketing game is easy and quick access to your information.

The Two Rules Of Thumb For Marketing File Organization

There are two general rules of thumb when it comes to organizing electronic files.

  1. You should be able to get to any file within 3-4 clicks.
  2. You should have no fewer or more folders than you need.

For example, one person might set it up like this:

Proposals/Construction Management/P0101 Brayard School Library Renovation

Another person might set it up like this:

Proposals/Schools/P0101 Brayard School Library Renovation

You wouldn’t want this:

Proposals/Construction Management/Schools/Renovations/Middle Schools/Libraries/PA/P0101 Brayard School Library Renovation

That does seem organized. And sure, you’ll be able to find the Brayard school proposal quickly (if you know it’s a middle school library renovation project). But not everybody potentially looking for that file will have that kind of knowledge.

So, you need to be careful to walk the tightrope between not enough organization and too much granularity.

Using these two guidelines, you’ll be fine.

Project Photos

Regarding project photos, you will eventually have a lot of them. While at first it will be fine to use a simple file structure (like outlined above), ultimately I think you want to use a photo management tool that can draw from one shared library.

Apple Photos can do this. I also believe Google’s photos desktop app works like this too. There are many desktop apps out there that do this.

If you have your photos, properly tagged, in a trusted system…they’ll be easy to get to.

People Will Disrespect Your File System

Here’s another important note. I promise that someone will disrespect your filing system. Someone will throw a file in the root folder. Or they will make a new folder and misfile something in it.

One way to deal with this is to restrict writing access to the root folder. But that can get tricky. A better, but more time consuming approach you can do is have someone look through your files once a month and properly file any outlaw files or folders.

Like anything else, if you let your file system become the “wild west” without a sheriff, it will be too time consuming to clean things up after a few years. That’s what happens to a lot of firms.

Now let’s hear from you. Leave a comment and tell us what’s the best way to manage your firm’s electronic files?

How To Gain The Courage To Be Different

How To Gain The Courage To Be Different

One of the most interesting questions I’ve received is, “How can we gain the courage to be different?”

That’s a great question. Many of our problems in business and life come down to fear. Fear protects us and, unfortunately, it limits us.

Most of my readers now recognize that “different is better than better.” But it can be frustrating when you or the people you work with aren’t willing to take the steps necessary to step out and be different.

So let’s look at what it takes to be different and how we can muster up the courage to be our unique selves.

On Being Different

Looking at it from a sociological perspective, our society both shuns and glorifies those who are different. Our society is kind of bi-polar that way.

You can love Kanye West’s music, but also think he’s a completely insane person. You can glorify some of the ways he is different and vilify others.

You can walk into any high school and see just how those who stray from the norm are treated.

When you think about it, being different is a minefield! Why would anyone take a chance and try to be different?

So, when you walk up to an architect and say, “we need to be completely different than any other architecture firm…”

…He or she will probably agree with you on principle.

But ask that same architect to do something wildly different and she/he will probably decline.

It’s actually been drilled into our head not to be different.

So, Where Do You Get The Courage?

You test being different. And you test in “Low Consequence Environments.”

For example, if you want to test being different in your proposals…

…test it when the odds aren’t in your favor.

If you are an engineer that wants to be better at networking…

…test it at a networking event where there are no possible clients.

In Low Consequence Environments, if you fail…there’s no real consequence.

Once you test it, ask yourself, “Is this what I’m afraid of?”

Like anything else, once you do it a few times, it’s not that scary.

Now it’s your turn. Submit a comment and give us some examples of people being afraid to be different.

The Hogwash Fact About Extraverts and Selling That Everyone Thinks Is True

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In a recent post over at ENR, Scott Butcher talked about the dark cloud that hangs over the concept of selling in our industry. Let’s dive deeper into that and look at a huge misconception that may be affecting your business. One of the biggest complaints I hear from executives in our industry is that […]

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Should You Expect Failure?

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Isn’t it the worst? You try something new, but the result is less than spectacular. It’s frustrating because you see others try the same thing and it seems to work flawlessly for them. What’s going on? Why do things look so easy for everyone else? Are these people just better or smarter than you? The […]

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How To Justify Hiring New Marketing Staff

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One of the questions I always hear is: “How many marketers should my firm have?” That’s a very good question. And there are different rules of thumb used to answer that (like one marketer for every 20 people). I’m not sure if any of them are valid. I think the real question is, “How do […]

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Is Marketing Professional Gambling?

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Remember how you felt the last time one of your marketing initiatives worked? We’ve all experienced that. It feels tremendous. It feels like you are in command of destiny. But they don’t all work, do they? Every marketer has experienced the feeling of failure when one of his or her campaigns or pet projects underperforms. […]

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You’re Invited To Our First Meet Up Meet Up 2015

Yes, the Help Everybody Army is having its first meet up in conjunction with the SMPS Build Business Conference. And you are invited. So, if you are in the LA area on: Wednesday, August 19, 2015 from 07:30 PM to 10:00 PM Come meet your fellow Help Everybody Soldiers at: Big Wang’s Bar 801 South […]

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The Actual Word-For-Word Scripts I Use To Get Meetings With Extremely Busy People

I think we can all agree that getting meetings with busy people, let’s not mince words, feels impossible. But ultimately, it’s not. It’s just that 99.99% of people go about it completely the wrong way. That’s why today I’m going to show you exactly how I’ve arranged meetings with busy high-level officials and business owners. […]

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Video, Drones, And Marketing, Oh My

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In this episode of the Design and Construction Marketing Podcast we talk to Dana Lancour of Barton Malow about everything video marketing. Dana shares with us her experiences as they relate to using video marketing at your firm. Depending on where you are reading this: you can listen to the podcast below, at this episode’s […]

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My New Book Is Out (And It’s Not What You Think)

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A while back, I sent an email discussing two potential books I was working on. But then I decided to ask myself a very important question. What projects on my list are the most challenging and have the most potential for impact? So, I put those books on the back burner for the time being. I […]

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