Most times when communicators talk about “Integrated Communications” they are referring to a mix of media and message delivery. However, integrated communications should also include a mix of communication techniques or, as we like to call them “Persuasion Techniques.”
There are six techniques. We try to deploy several on behalf of our clients, because if you stick to one or two, your communication sounds monotonous.
Now, not every technique will resonate with your audience. As part of the strategic planning process, you need to consider which ones are more effective apropos to your audience segments. For example, “Appeal of Authority” works well among audiences in organizations with chains of command. On the other hand, more independent minded audiences will be more persuaded by “Social Proof/Evidence.”
|Appeal of Authority||Important people and those in authority can help make communications more convincing.|
|Repetition||If information is presented consistently and in repeating patterns, people will remember it and believe it.|
|Social Proof/Evidence||People will look to facts and proof points from peers to help support their own actions and opinions.|
|Commitment||Once committed to a path, people are more likely to follow it than to make a change.|
|Bandwagon||People prefer to associate with like-minded groups and to feel as if they belong.|
|Trust||When people trust an organization and brand, they are more likely to be persuaded.|
So, audit of your comms efforts. See which persuasion techniques you’ve been using. And, then decide if you have the right mix given your target audiences. You might find, like life, a little variety may spice your messaging up.
If you are interested in following up, feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com!
Last week we discussed the need to make fundamental, not just operational, changes in this transformative 2020 moment.
So many companies and nonprofits aren’t thinking that way, believing they can’t make big, bold changes to their business model. But while they think they’re playing it safe, in reality they aren’t. By trying to squeeze by, they are going to face the ultimate big, bold business decision: “Can I stay open, or must I shut down?”
Being persistently innovative is the best way to survive. A great example of is that of the humble Post-it Note (courtesy of consultant/author Nick Skillicorn). In 1968, 3M’s Spencer Silver was developing an ultra-strong adhesive for use in aircraft construction. Instead, a mistake led to the weak and new adhesive called acrylate co-polymer microspheres. The microspheres had the unique characteristics of being incredibly strong and sticking at a tangent to the surface, which meant the substance could be peeled away without residue and reused.
After the initial discovery, 3M leaders didn’t see value in a nonstick adhesive. Not until 1977 did the company finally test it for real-world sales. Hardly anyone bought it. Fortunately, the new products laboratory manager didn’t give up so easily and thought the product didn’t sell because it was new and people didn’t yet understand its value. (Is this your situation?)
So a year after the 1978 flop, 3M tried one more time by sending out large numbers of free samples to companies to try, then tracking how many of them ordered. Almost 90% of those given samples ordered the product, which finally showed there was demand. The rest is history.
Translated to our topic at hand: What you need in this environment is both innovation and persistence. Re-evaluate your consumer. Rethink your business model. You can’t assume old beliefs still hold and that you still know what customers need and want.
That’s a heavy lift. Here are three pieces of advice to help get you through it:
- Be sure you’re asking the right questions. Don’t be timid. A lot of times we skirt some of the big questions because it’s easier to get along and not cause a stir. Your questions need to cause a stir. This might mean scrutinizing cherished practices or no longer offering products and services that have been around for generations.
- Do the math. Don’t let sentimentality get in the way of making a decision. One lesson I’ve learned from successful organizations is the sanctity of clean and accurate data. We’ve all heard the saying “garbage in, garbage out”—you don’t want your business to be taken out with the trash.
- Be true to your values. Think about what sets you apart, your added value and what values you bring to what you do. Another way to think of it: Look at your friends. Why are they your friends? Not because they live nearby but because you share their values and have a lot in common. You’re not clones. You express your values in different, original ways that keep you engaged. Likewise, your clients come to you because they like what you provide; they like the way you do business.
There’s so much more, but customized guidance is always most useful. Contact Michael Tinati at firstname.lastname@example.org and the able staff of Kinetics MarCom for big-picture analysis of your audience or customers, prospects, and best next steps.
Let’s innovate, persist, and prosper together.
In this odd year, most of us reassessed our daily routines, lifestyles, and goals. You probably buy groceries differently, connect differently with family and friends, and have rethought your household budget to reflect economic uncertainties.
Besides getting good at Zoom, panicking a bit, and maybe applying for a business loan, have you done the same reassessments at work?
A lot of enterprises think they have. They’ve tweaked operational models for interacting with customers and clients. There’ve been some ingenious solutions around service and product delivery, but a lot of organizations are doing pretty much the same old things. Unfortunately, many customers and clients are finding that the value isn’t there anymore.
With the coronavirus, its economic fallouts, nationwide Black Lives Matter protests, and unusual political unrest, 2020 has changed our world. (The virus alone accelerated use of technology and the expiration of some trends that were going to collapse anyway.) Unsurprisingly, you’ve changed as a consumer. What you value has changed.
This is a transformative moment. It’s a chance to leapfrog your competitors and become a market leader. If you’re making operational changes like so many others—not fundamental, transformational changes to your products and services and to how you interact and communicate with customers and clients—now must be the time for major reassessment.
Next week, in Part 2, we’ll discuss three pieces of advice to innovate to meet these new needs.
As always, if you have questions or want to discuss this topic further, feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com.