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5 Key Questions for Successful Marketing Communications Plans

May 17, 2012

Last week I went to the Portland Communicators Conference, which was a great chance to mingle with other communicators and gather new ideas from industry leaders about how we can help our clients remain relevant in our ever changing digital world. One theme that stood out to me throughout the show was that the key to relevancy is making sure your end result resonates with your audience.

Whether writing a newsletter, creating an infographic or shooting a video, it is essential to speak the same language as your target audience. As Ann Wylie said in her keynote session, “to catch a fish you have to use the bait they like, not the bait you like.” In other words, find out what your audience is interested in and tailor your piece accordingly.

Image courtesy of Steven Goodwin

To make sure your marketing communications efforts will successfully reach your audience, start by asking the right questions:

1)      Who are you trying to reach?

  • What do they like/dislike?
  • What do they need?
  • How do they speak?

2)      What do you want these people to know, think or do after they read, see or watch your communications venture?

3)      How does that information or action benefit them and meet their needs?

4)      What is the best method to reach the target audience so it is easy for them to get the message?

5)      What’s the budget and preferred timeline?

This list is simply a place to start. There are many other great questions you can ask depending on your communications initiative, just don’t skip this step. It’s easy to do when you’re busy or anxious to get started, but it’s worth it to slow down and start the project on the right foot. Your audience will thank you!

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