Do you get overwhelmed by the concept of a communications “strategy”? Does it seem so daunting that you keep on doing what you’re doing already? Or, do you assume your strategy needs to be complete and perfect, so you don’t even start to create one? Relax! It doesn’t have to be so hard.
Get the people who have a stake in your communications in the same room and ask them:
1) Who are the audiences we’re trying to reach? (Hint: there is no such thing as “the general public.” You have people inside and outside your organization that you would like to do something for the organization. Who are they, specifically?)
2) Toward what end? (Once we have built up a nice, preferably two-way, relationship with the audience, what will they start to do that they weren’t doing before?)
3) What do we already know about these audiences? What do we need to find out to give them what they’re looking for?
Answer these questions first, and then issues like the content of your messages, the media you should use, what counts as success and how you measure it will be much easier to resolve.
But don’t stop reaching out and interacting with people in the mean time! “Take a sad song and make it better.” —The Beatles
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