Like all visitors to the Listening to the Social Entrepreneur conference, my pack included a leaflet from a university research centre. Today it popped up on the top of my in-tray while I was making a concerted effort to clear it. The leaflet is a description of the research centre, but it included a web address, so I visited that website. It contained essentially the same information and nothing else. What was the point of that? I already had their contact details in the attendee list. How much did these leaflets cost?
In general, it’s a little disappointing when you get a “null pointer” from a private company, but it’s particularly annoying from a university. University mistakes like “technology transfer programmes” (that stop software becoming free software available to social enterprises) are justified by a need to get more money – but clearly this particular university has money to waste. How about others?
If there was a way to subscribe to email or blog news of their research publications, I probably would have subscribed. Instead, I’ve just ranted here (without rewarding them with a link) and now I’m going to recycle the flier. I’ll probably have forgotten the three-letter acronym by next week. It’s simply bad marketing. It’s paper spam. Please, if you are putting things into conference handout packs, ask yourself why? What are you hoping to get out of it? How are you going to measure its success?