Has 2020 left a dent in your communication goals? Nobody can deny planning took a back seat last year, and even though there is still some uncertainty about the road ahead, planning your communication and engagement for 2021 should be a priority.
Planning and preparation are key to delivering clear and effective communication and building a strategic plan that works for you, and your business, is an important task no matter how busy you are.
When we work with our clients on a tailored and effective communication strategy or plan, we invest a lot of time in understanding their goals and business needs, crafting the perfect brand narrative and message, and researching audience and channels. It is a detailed and comprehensive process, and we couldn’t cover it all in a blog post, but we have put together some very simple steps to help you start thinking about your communication plans in 2021.
- Review previous years plans and outcomes – When we sit down to talk about communication planning with clients, we look back before we look forward. This gives us a benchmark to see improvement, but is also an opportunity to identify which communication activities worked and which ones did not.
- Purpose – Why are you communicating? What is it you want to achieve? What are you asking your audience to do? Remember to keep it simple, be realistic about time and resources and don’t try and do everything at once. If you have a lot to achieve, break it down into manageable phases or horizons that build momentum towards your purpose.
- Audience – You need to understand who your target audience is before you can create your messaging, design your communication activities and decide what channels to use. For a business wide plan, you may have multiple audiences. Make sure you consider them all, the level of information they may need, and how best to tailor information to them.
- Messages – At LKB we use a tried and tested formula for developing key messages. It follows a what, how, who approach designed to draw out the key points and make sure your messaging is clear and compelling.
- Channels – Once you know who you are talking to and what you are going to say, you need to work out how to reach them. Understanding where to reach your audience as well as how they prefer to be communicated with, is critical to them really listening, engaging with what you have say and acting on it.
Creating an effective communication plan takes time and expertise. If you haven’t started planning for 2021 yet, or if you want to take your business communication planning to the next level or want some advice on how best to communicate a particular issue or project, open a conversation with us today.