6 Insights toward Good Communication

When I read that title, I hear it in my mind almost like a Carly Simon song...

One of the main goals of every company or organization must be to get messages out effectively.  (The easiest way possible is not always effective)  Still today many companies struggle to reach their client … much less prospective clients.  And listening to what clients say on hundreds of social sites?  Oh, my...

Obviously we help with making the job easier.  Improvement is both possible and relatively straightforward. One of the best ways to right the ship is to know some warning signs of bad communication.  We collected six crucial indicators of an unhealthy communication strategy.  Using these insights, you should be able to work toward Good Communication with your business or organization.

1. Unable to quickly reach a majority of clients without notice. One means to measure a businesses health is to gage how efficiently you can get a message to customers.  The use case is easy - imagine a recall or a critical security issue.  Take a quick poll at your next staff meeting and see how long it would take to reach 51% of your entire client roster. A healthy company should be able to do so in 30 minutes or less.

2. People say, “We only hear from you when you're selling something.” Getting a note from someone personally exciting … don't forget the personal nature of business.  However, when people feel that all of those emails or messages are related to sales, they will tune you out. The impact on your brand is devastating.  Of course, businesses need to sell, but your clients are interested in more. Always look for ways to add value to your clients.  Make a list of everything you’ve sent to your clients in the last six months. If more than half of that list is related strictly to sales, it’s cause for concern.

3. Every department is communicating with different tools. A scourge on many companies is the dreaded “Silo syndrome” or "Fiefdom fight".  When each department has tools that don't connect, a contact list all its own, they won't share or collaborate with authenticity... you're headed down a dark path.  Does it really make sense to separate Marketing and Sales?  (Not today.)  When only a few departments are sharing through a central tool or platform, you have a serious problem. This not only prevents information from being up-to-date, but it diminishes the ability to reach as many people as possible and suffocates ingenuity and opportunity. Unify your company to make it more healthy and include email, text messaging and (!) social networking in your strategy.

4. Existing tools aren’t reaching the majority of your clients.  Many businesses make the mistake of choosing tools that are only useful to some employees and therefore only some clients or prospects are reached.  The people who already get engaged with your brand aren't the gap.  Connect more deeply with clients, and seek out the casual visitor, or the person who stops by from a new campaign. Think in real time to get real results.

5. It isn’t easy for customers to connect with you. Many communication tools seem promising on the outside, but end up being cumbersome when it comes to actually signing up or "converting" in marketing parlance. It’s unlikely that a potential client of your business will download even the fanciest app (let alone check it regularly) or log in to your website or social media network, without a driving reason to do so.  Fnd out more about your target market and what they are seeking right now - by listening to them.  That is the foundation of Reputation Management, right there.

6. The company mission is unclear. Websites, emails, Google+ posts, Facebook posts, and tweets are all great. But do they collectively communicate what your business is all about? Do those messages build your reputation? A good communication strategy is deliberate and clear as to what it’s trying to accomplish. Are all of your staff and organizational leaders working toward the same, clearly identified purpose? And is that purpose a consistent theme throughout all of your communications?

Do any of these problems sound like your business or organization? If so, you might be interested in contacting us, here.

Read more about Reputation Management.

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