The elegant coffee table book
“A brand is a voice and a product is a souvenir.” – Lisa Gansky
Picture this: You have been invited to a meeting at some big office or the other. You were raised right, or at least, you went to a school whose harsh discipline master thoroughly acquainted you with the value of time; other people’s time. As such, you make your way there in good time, to be exact, half an hour before the time slated for the meeting. In short, you keep ‘European time’ as your old folks used to say.
Now, first impressions count. Old magazines are a no-no. In your mind, you are clear that they belong to haphazard salons and barber shops. Certainly, this organisation got the memo on this and you give them a thumbs up. The reception area is spacious and airy, the reception staff amiable – they even offer you coffee which you politely decline/accept – another plus for them. Plum couches…
The centrepiece of the reception area? This polished mahogany coffee table embossed with the company’s logo in gold. The whole spectacle inspires confidence in the company and you are more than sold that you definitely should do business with them. Which means that the meeting you are going to have shortly with the general morning is more of a formality regarding the terms and conditions of engagements between your two organisations.
Meanwhile, here you are thumbing through the various magazines and newspapers on offer courtesy of the coffee table. The Daily Conjurer, Reach to Rich, The World in Five, The Weekly Orchestra… meaning that in 30 minutes, you are thoroughly intimate with the financial markets and business and political happenings at the local, regional and global level.
The meeting with the general manager goes well. He is on time, friendly, knowledgeable about industry specifics and such like. You give them business. Half an hour later, you realise what that nagging feeling was all about as you frantically go through their website to find what they are all about. They seem legit alright, you conclude. They really have invested on their website.
But still, what if you had?