By Presentation Studio

June 2, 2020

Navigating the new normal establishing new channels of communication

Navigating the new normal: Establishing new channels of communication

This article is the third in an eight-part series where we help organisation understand the importance of communicating in a post-COVID19 world. To keep up to date, follow Presentation Studio on LinkedIn.

The introduction of social distancing restrictions meant that many organisations needed to optimise already existing digital communication channels or establish new ones. Whether internally or externally focused, ensuring you have a way to engage your customers and your employees with clarity is a necessity when it comes to maintaining business continuity. Here are a few things to consider as you establish new communication channels and re-evaluate your current digital channels.

Establish your values before you establish your channels:
Communication channels give your organisation the opportunity show what you value, not just communicate what you value. Before you invest time, resources, and energy into establishing a new channel you need to understand what values your companies wishes to embody. Whether it is a social media channel or an internal communication platform, each digital channel comes with its own functionality that can either help or hinder your company’s ability to demonstrate its values. For example, if your company values customer service, consider digital channels that help you deliver great customer care. Twitter is a platform built on conversation, it can be used to facilitate conversations between organisations and customers. When it comes to internally facing platforms, if maintaining a culture of openness is important to your organisation you might want to restrict the use of chat platforms and use video conferencing for majority of communication, that way you can avoid miscommunication and maintain that culture of openness.

Choose the platform your audience is already on:
It’s easy to just start setting up multiple platforms to make sure your brand is represented across all digital channels. It is incredibly hard to maintain these platforms effectively and ensure that your brand is being constantly well represented across all of these platforms. Channels that aren’t used or that are under-utilised pose a serious risk to your brand. When it comes to selecting the right platform, don’t just choose the latest platform, choose the platform your target demographic uses the most. If you are a Retirement Village looking to house new residents, you wouldn’t start putting together a strategic plan for making Tik Tok videos. Spend the time understanding where your audience is and then take your message to the channel.

Match the right content to the right platform:
Channels are built for specific types of content and it’s important to match the right content to the right channel to ensure you get the best results. Majority of externally facing platforms encourage visual content, from video (YouTube and Tik Tok) to images (Instagram and Facebook), if you are considering engaging in these platforms you need to have access to videographers, content writers and designers who can create content optimal for the channel. Creating content that is optimised for the channel will ensure that the audience hears your key message loud and clear.

Clear is kind. Unclear is unkind:
Times are tough right now and the world still feels largely uncertain. When it comes to establishing business continuity, tough decisions need to be made. When it comes to using these newly formed channels to communicate decisions that negatively affect your audience it’s important to ensure you are using the right channel to convey the message. Internally, a video call might be more effective than an email, a video to your customers might be more effective than a text-based press release. It’s important that you match the channel with the message but also that you aim for clarity above all else. If you fail to do this, you jeopardise the trust of your employees and/or position your organisation for unnecessary brand risk.

This world we are slowly re-entering is new for all of us. To ensure you navigate the new normal well, it is important to make sure that you are communicating using the appropriate channels in the appropriate ways.

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