Why e-marketing communication is so important for your business or organization
I sat down with two members of the Westerville School board this morning to discuss the tough situation facing the district. Westerville is, like many communities, experiencing a financial crunch with decreased property valuations, delinquent tax payments and less money from the State. A levy to close the gap recently failed by a large margin (60/40) in a district that rarely fails levies.
“Rarely does the rumor mill
work in your favor.”
What happened and what does it mean for me and my business or organization?
I believe the levy primarily failed because of lack of communication – basically lack of a marketing plan. Even though the district was experiencing financial hardships, no real information was communicated or marketing campaign launched until just before the levy. The information that was available was either hard to understand or high level. This resulted in people forming their own beliefs about the underlying issues and whether or not they would support the levy. Clearly this did not go the way the district had hoped. Rarely does the rumor mill work in your favor.
The moral of this story is take control of your brand and the information flow before the problem arises. You can accomplish this in a few straightforward steps:
1. Do not wait until the last minute to communicate important information. Whether its a change in policy, end of life of a product or service or needing more tax revenue, communicate as early as you so you reduce the shock factor. Have you noticed that no one blinks at the $3.00+ per gallon we pay for gas now? Do you remember when the price was climbing quickly to these new levels? It’s all anyone could talk about. Now we just accept it as the norm.
2. Push information frequently and repetitively. A business blog (or organizational blog) is a great way to keep the flow of information – flowing! You may need to tell someone the same thing three or four times before it sinks in. I have heard seasoned public speakers say “state your main point at the beginning, in the middle and at the end”. This is because repetition sticks with us and sometimes we just aren’t listening the first couple times.
3. Be transparent. Nothing kicks the rumor mill into high gear like the perception of hiding or spinning information or facts. Most stories have two sides. Present both to your audience. Feel free to choose a side, but present them both anyway. Another way to enhance transparency is to invite comments and questions. (Think blog comments or posts to a facebook wall). Be sure to respond appropriately to all legitimate questions. Chances are, when a question is asked, many people have the same question in their minds. Respond with honesty and compassion and stop the rumor mill in its tracks.
- Content Marketing and Business Blogging – a quick overview
- Foursquare – transitioning to Digital Marketing
- Business Blogging Tip: 3 ways to Be the Brand