To make sure the messages you deliver have the desired impact, it's essential to interview and listen to your stakeholders, KC & Co Communications founder Krysten Copeland tells Doug Simon.
"There's a variety of ways to do it," Copeland says. "You can do it through social listening. You can do it through focus groups if you have the budget to do so. But I generally tend to do the focus groups on social media and see what is actually resonating with my audience."
Before you go out with your messaging, she says, its key to ensure that you "have a diverse group of people in the room making the decisions to make sure that the messaging will actually be inclusive and not accidentally offensive to other people." Polling around the messaging can also help "make sure that your stakeholders and target audiences are really cued into what messaging you want to put out there."
When your fails to resonate, it's often "just a matter of having an honest conversation and going back to the drawing board, talking to the internal stakeholders to figure out what messaging shifts need to take place and then starting all over again."
To get your message heard in today's crowded media landscape, one essential is having "a unique, diverse perspective. It's also about making sure that you are constantly going back and testing."
Copeland also talks about the power of both local and national TV news to help get your message across. Local TV is "definitely a resource that any public relations person should be utilizing and end up building relationships with." To make your message land with a national TV audience, she says, takes having "a very clear message" and "making sure that you're doing the work on the back end to evaluate what messaging will best resonate with the audience. It's our responsibility as PR people to have messaging that is effective and that resonates and that actually changes the conversation."
And for communicators to have their "fingers on the pulse" of the issues surrounding their messaging, "it's important to have diverse perspectives in the room. All the time I see brands messing up because they thought something was okay. But they just didn't have the diverse perspectives to tell them that it wasn't."
Interested in taking part? Contact Doug Simon at [email protected]