Why companies age badly

Can you remember that company who still looks the same? Me neither.

A chronicle cause of forgottenisitis in businesses, new and (specially) old.

Well, companies age. They do. CEOs change, founders die, they get bought, merged, or seemingly abandoned and forgotten. They update their website once in a while but probably never, and it still has that 2000 copyright at the bottom of their page. You literally can’t find them anywhere and let’s be honest, no one has a yellow page book anymore.

Companies like exist. Some are even fairly new. How can you avoid it happening with yours?

It’s not just that old engineering company that ages badly, online businesses age badly too. And sometimes they are just a teenager company, but still look old. In a perfect world, they are like Benjamin Button, start looking old and progressively looking younger and more modern as it grows.

Companies that age badly simply look abandoned and not active anymore. And if the reality is that they still are active… YIKES.

Because they don’t care to keep up with the global market

Granted, the engineering company might not care about their website simply because their market is local, or it is a tight group and network. However, even those markets are (slowly) changing. But if for a local business like it shows a slight lack of leadership and care, for an online business it screams it.

And yes, there are cases of online marketplaces who “forget” to keep up with the changes on how people buy, simply because they are scared of change (to more efficient methods of marketing).

Because they are unreachable

The CEO of that engineering company even has a Linkedin, but he never visits, and the only method of communication is an outdated contact form that sends you a “failure of delivery”/bounce email. Social media accounts? They might even exist but are outdated or entirely empty.

Social Media is strong, but they don’t use it or do not use it properly

Because even the engineering company can benefit of Linkedin and YouTube, at least. For an online business, it is more likely they will have it but the usage is either mixed up with the CEO’s personal life (no curation of content) or is full of terrible, uninteresting content that absolutely does not connect with the audience.

Their website still dates 1999 or 2004

That’s a big yikkie. Non responsive websites, with that old look and the footer still show the old age. Worst then an ID.

Even if you opened a year ago, update the copyright age.

They don’t make their content for the right audience

Or they don’t make content at all.

Informative content, things the audience can download and being consistent about it show that your company cares, and that you are always paying attention and trying to give something back to the industry.


What to do instead:

  1. Do something that is not industry standard — be the purple cow
  2. Find a social media that speaks to your audience and stick to it.
  3. Find consistency in one SoMe (social media) before exploring another one
  4. Update your website — professional and responsive websites go a long way for a positive perception
  5. Make content intended to your audience, not the mass — short videos, written content, podcast. Curate in your industry.

Bonus: Branding

A well done rebrand can help an old (or new) business reposition their offer in the market.

Branding will help create a better connection between business goals and the audience the business wants to reach, taking in consideration the industry standards, global markets, trends and new technologies. It is not all about Design, but good Design is good good business, nevertheless…

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