Brand Debate

Return on Investment? A very dry couple of words

Is that Roy there?

It’s something Finance Directors bark when they’re a little bit skeptical about the latest BIG IDEA from those wacky kids in marketing. Or so the cliché goes.

They’re a divisive couple of words. If you’re not careful they can build walls not bridges. If you shorten it to ROI it turns into a weapon – the WMD of the corporate world (weapon of marketing destruction). The bark that banishes every new idea to the Graveyard of Ideas – and no one wants to be in the GoI.

They’re a dead end couple of words. If you don’t have the exact answer to the ROI question sands shift and you are sucked down as food for the giant Beetlejuice sand snakes.

ROI: I’d like to rebrand it.
Let’s make love not war. Let’s use it as a cooperative tool – the veritable dove of the corporate boardroom. When done well, ROI can be the panacea that gets everyone on the same page.

ROI should be seen as a collaborative process. One where the focus is on what the organisation wants to achieve. Where people work across the organisation to build metrics that people buy into. The aim should be to build an ROI model with a blend of hard and soft metrics: senses that focus on the future of the organisation.

Let’s say ‘roy’ not ‘ROI’.
If ROI were a coffee it’d be British Rail coffee – a coffee that burns your hands, your mouth, throat, feet, the bin: molten lava. It’s got a hint of alchemy to it while being blunt and abrasive.

Wouldn’t life be much better if we could say: “are coming to the roy workshop?” “How do we roy that?” or “yes, we royed that and we just couldn’t see the value” or even “What does roy think of that?” while sipping a skinny cappuccino with some indulgent topping.

Roy becomes someone. Someone approachable. Someone anyone can talk to. Someone who cares about the future of the company. Someone who explains the future of the company. Someone progressive. Someone who occasionally let’s their hair grow too long but knows what they’re talking about. But above all Roy becomes that rare person who brings people together to focus on what matters.

What do you think? Roy or ROI?


2 thoughts on “Return on Investment? A very dry couple of words

    • I’m sure Pat would work well with Roy. With Roy looking to the future and Pat validating progress (or lack thereof) I think they’d be a team to be reckoned with.

      Thanks for your comment Robin.

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