Client: Compaq Computers, multinational IT company
Assignment: Analyze communication products for appropriateness of length, tone and effectiveness. Recommend changes.
- Find consensus on communications goals within the communications department
- Develop a departmental process for assigning and reviewing copy to ensure consistency and quality
- Develop a particular tone-of-voice that will strengthen the company’s brand image
- Develop communications templates that will help ensure consistency among pieces
- Develop a strategy to promote company-wide buy-in of the new templates and tone of voice
Our report to the company outlined specific strategies for achieving each of these goals. In addition, we worked more closely with the company on points one and three.
After talking to the communications department to get consensus on how it wanted to change, we rewrote several communications pieces to show how these could be made shorter, more customer-focused and less repetitive. The company used our examples to guide their communications products for use across Europe.
Text rewrite example one
In the following example of a text rewrite, notice how we 1) shifted the emphasis from the company to its customers 2) moved the case study to a box to give it more emphasis [and make it more consistent with other case studies in the brochure] and 3) made the lead half as long as in the original so it had more punch.
Original text: “Why do inspired people and companies come to [company] for solutions? They say it’s because we deliver technology that solves problems, opens doors, reveals opportunities and fuels innovation.
Whatever your requirements –from supercomputing to home PCs – today you need us to do more than just supply technology to bring your ideas to life. That’s why we’re moving beyond mere information technology…to Inspiration Technology.
Inspiration Technology is a way of transforming your great ideas into long-term, successful realities. After all, technology never comes up with a great idea…people do. For instance, the people at Bloemenveiling Aalsmeer, operator of the world’s largest horticultural auction, had an inspired idea – and asked us to work with them to develop their Internet trading solution. Today, the Netherlands-based site sells more than 17 million flowers and 2 millions plants every day worldwide.
Let [company] help you thrive on your inspirations, reach your goals and go further than you’ve ever gone before.”
Text rewrite: “It takes more than technology to bring your ideas to life. It takes inspiration as well. That’s why at [company] we’re moving beyond information technology…to offer you Inspiration Technology.
Inspiration Technology solves problems, opens doors, reveals opportunities, fuels innovation. And transforms your great ideas into long-term, successful realities.
Let us help you thrive on your inspirations, reach your goals and go further than you’ve ever gone before. “
Text rewrite example two
In the second spread of the brochure, we took a rather fuzzy text, shaved off more than 100 words, brought the text back squarely to the “Inspiration Technology” theme and focused it, once more, on customers.
Across the spectrum of Internet usage – from the simple needs of school children to the exacting information demands of a stock exchange – online access to very specific content anywhere anytime has profoundly changed communications and computing. And, the trend is accelerating with the rapid growth of wireless Internet access, the convergence of the IT and the telecommunications industries, and the demand for rich, personalised content. All this is accompanied by an extraordinary phenomenon: it is not just IT and telecommunications that are converging; our personal and business lives are also merging. Technology expectations are therefore high…
It’s a changing world where analysts predict there will be 500 million people on the Internet, in less than three years, boosting e-commerce from $111 billion to $1.3 trillion. As these exciting developments unfold, we must continue to focus on enabling you to get the information you need – how, when and where you need it. The Internet infrastructure, with its ever-expanding processing power and scalable storage capabilities, is making increasingly larger volumes of knowledge available to us. That’s why we are formulating end-to-end solutions that enable our customers to access, store and interact with information reliably, securely and conveniently.
We’re doing everything we can to improve the entire experience of accessing information, bringing this vital resource closer to people — to a place we call “the edge of the network” –so that our customers can locate and use exactly what they need, swiftly and easily.
Your success in the 24×7 e-business world depends on the best infrastructure, access and services that build the winning solution. With these tools, you can set your sights higher and focus on achieving your goals.
The seeds of your inspiration: the Internet
The state of communications and computing make new realities possible every day. With great opportunities in e-commerce and information access. Perhaps you’ve already been inspired to capitalise on trends: the rapid increase in wireless Internet access, the blurring of our business and personal lives and the demand for rich, personalised content—to name but three. Or wondered how to use the ever-expanding processing power and scalable storage capabilities of the Internet infrastructure to gain access to increasingly larger volumes of knowledge, anytime and anywhere.
Helping you solve your challenges
The Internet, and the 24 X 7 economy it allows, also bring you challenges. For example, the challenge of getting the right information to the people who need it. And of meeting extremely high technical expectations. At [company], we want you to use all the inspiration you derive from the Internet—without having to sweat the technical stuff. So we help you to build the infrastructure, access and services that guarantee your success. And that free you to set your sights higher and focus on achieving your goals.