Remanufacturing is the process of disassembly and recovery at the module level and, eventually, at the component level. It requires the repair or replacement of worn out or obsolete components and modules. Parts subject to degradation affecting the performance or the expected life of the whole are replaced.


Typically, a used product's components are dismantled, cleaned, and dust and corrosion are removed. Through the process the parts are either restored or replaced.  Remanufacturing is an accepted practice because of energy savings and reduction in raw materials.  And while a popular practice in product care, it's one that is also relevant in business process.


When I managed a marketing communications team we worked to be agile, efficient, and revenue contributors. But in our work we lost focus of the core components and competencies required to run such an organization.  We started to slow, errors increased, and it was evident we weren't producing our best work because we didn't have the analytics to reinforce our efforts.  It was time to dismantle, clean, and repair our worn-out marketing practices.


We weren't alone in this exercise.  Many marketing organizations recognize a need to reevaluate practices and identify improvement opportunity.  This is such a common problem that it spurred a year-long discussion on our community site, consisting of 98 contributions, and it still continues today.  Below are 17 remanufacturing practices for your marketing organization.


  1. Benchmark, develop data dictionaries, and naming conventions.  Develop, document and automate governance for privacy policies, global email policies, and data and reporting standards.
  2. Think beyond demand generation. Nurture with educational content and engage through the customer lifecycle.
  3. 2 dimensional thinking wastes time for the perceived quick buck.  Ensure all stakeholders have an understanding of implemented manufacturing practices and tools, as well as the value of each.
  4. Use data to provide guidance on resource allocation and develop customer relationships
  5. Take advantage of other training and communities. You'll be faster, more effective, and a better marketer if you know how to use tools.
  6. Remember you're not just marketing across multiple channels, but also to multiple audiences with unknown spheres of influence
  7. Share the knowledge.  Don't be the only person trained or working with a system at your company.  36-Remanufacturing-an-Item-Sometimes-Costs-More-2.jpg
  8. Conduct a digital audit.  Identify channels not tied to marketing or sales programs.  Find opportunity outside of traditional digital channels, like customer support databases, to build a universal profile. Include these channels to better engage and gain insight into behaviors.
  9. Map out a campaign on paper.  It's amazing what a little paper and pen and also a little writing out of campaign logic can do to save time.  Leverage tools like campaign and creative briefs to execute.
  10. Provide opportunities for resellers to engage. Analyze Digital Body Language to understand behaviors and motivations.
  11. Start with small, less complex campaigns to increase confidence.  Crawl - walk - run when learning something new.  It helps to get a better foundation and reinforces your understanding.  Don't revamp an entire program. Identify the bottlenecks and work to improve those first.
  12. Proofread, proofread, proofread...have someone else check it...let it sit again at least overnight and look at it again with fresh eyes.
  13. Consider ad buys to build, engage, and convert organically.  Channels beyond your firewall are an opportunity.
  14. Create a check-list to reduce agitation and prevent fatal activation accidents. Some checklists include double checking subject lines and sender information, testing the email in all browsers, form processing steps, and date and time of activation as per the correct time zone.  You can access an entire pre-flight checklist here.
  15. Automate and analyze events to increase scalability, enhance event return, and generate revenue.  Use this data to also reduce unnecessary events, increase attendance to premiere events, and reduce spend.
  16. Know your limits and asking for help.  We all start somewhere and you can do more damage by not asking questions than if you just admit your limitations.  Make sure you roll out changes to small pieces of your database, even if you've been doing this for years.  Testing is a great start but a lot of the times the tests are only covering ideal and/or known cases.  Once a solution is implemented you'll see unexpected results.
  17. Don't skim over best practices.  Slow down enough to think through the strategy for your naming conventions, email groups, campaign strategy and business processes.  You can utilize this as a naming convention generator.


Of course, this merely scratches the surface for many companies.  You can read all 98 comments here.  What remanufacturing practices would you add to this list?