Is your marketing collateral a lot like that old Sesame Street game that went,

One of these things is not like the others,
One of these things just doesn’t belong,
Can you tell which thing is not like the others
By the time I finish my song?

I’ll bet that if you walked into a conference room with samples of your collateral — business cards, brochures, flyers, posters, eBooks, case studies — and placed them across the length of a table, you would discover that many things did not look like they belonged. And that is a problem. Your marketing collateral is a customer-facing representative of your brand story. Each piece needs to share a high level of consistency with every other piece. Otherwise, you are telling a fractured story.

This was evident to me during a recent trade show we attended where old and new business cards mixed with old and new brochures and banners — all in the same booth — over and over again. It is tough to let go of collateral, I understand, but if you are concerned about the environment, recycle the old materials that do not match — and stop printing so much stuff in the first place!

Because the worst thing that could happen is that prospects see your lack of consistency as a lack of focus or caring.

What do you think?