Learn a proven and complete methodology for gathering and prioritizing your company’s message every month, how to account for every communication touchpoint, and how to plan, document and track every communication effort.
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Before you start your communication planning process, you need to ask yourself one very important question.
That’s right. The question is simply, “Who?” – “Who are you marketing to?”
Why Ask Who?
There’s an old story about John Elway who was the quarterback for the Denver Broncos. He threw the ball hard every single time. And especially at the beginning of his professional career, he made sure to throw the ball hard every time. Eventually, the coach came up to him and said you have to start throwing catchable passes. If the other person trying to catch the ball can’t catch your pass, then it’s not worth the hard throw.
This is a great analogy to answer the question, “Why ask who?” If you are creating a message that isn’t getting delivered, it’s not worth the effort.
So, are you throwing catchable passes?
For a direct sales company, this is a big challenge because we have so many different audiences who need different messages at different times. From the corporate side, we start with the field, customers, prospects and hostesses. And this isn’t an exhaustive list – you could even break it down further.
Most of the time, I hear companies say they send everything to everyone.
Or you hear companies say they send messages to people every day. If you are a customer getting bombarded with this many messages, eventually there will be fatigue.
Get as specific as you can, but don’t overwhelm yourself. Once you’re clear on the who, you can then jump on your communication planning process.
Who Sets the Communication Priorities?
The answer might surprise you. It’s not the Communication Director.
The Communication Director is having to coordinate the messages and activities of events, promotions, releases, incentives, science, training, etc. You can’t expect that one person to stay on top of all of that needs to be communicated. Their job is to facilitate priority discussions. Collect all of your messages. Set up a communication committee made up of representatives from every department. Facilitate internal discussions, then set external priorities. Break it down by month.
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