An external communication strategy can keep your conversation going with your customers, partners, and other external parties.
You live with your brand day in and day out. But external brand communications are how a newcomer to your brand it might be introduced to you. It might even be the first time they have even come across you.
More importantly, what do they take away from that first interaction? What do they remember?
Most organisations think they are simply found and then customers buy but this just isn’t the case. It really depends on where your customers are in their own personal journey along the path to purchase. But how do you shape a winning External communications strategy?
Where do I start with Planning an External brand Communications startergy?
Achieving effective communication with the outside world is essential when you want to sharpen the image you’ve created for your brand and develop the relationship you have with your customers. For most organisations, the road to success is paved with analytics. After all, the more you learn about the people you’re communicating with, the more you can enhance your messaging. However, the following tips are sure to get you started on the right track. Apart from all your external communications being on-brand and consistent, what other criteria should you take into account? Well as we’ve already mentioned your customer’s path to purchase is key to planning your external communications.
Your customer’s path to purchase helps planning not only messaging but also the type of communication platform you choose.
What is the best type of External brand Communications?
Where is your client at and what’s the best way to reach them at the juncture? Advertising? Activism? Catalogues? Content Marketing? Email? Event? Try-vertising? Mobile Apps? Newsletters? Phone Calls? Press Conference? Press Releases? Product Specification Sheets? Promotional Merch? Public Relations? Social Media? Or just via your website? The list goes on and on. Knowing who you are with a clear brand strategy and allows you to align your planning for which comms will deliver the best ROI.
As your future customers get to know who you are and start to consider you into the mix of choices to eventually choose you. Your comms platform will look different than when they actually engage with you and once then your media choice will adjust once they become a customer and even better still a repeat customer.
Be you not them.
Have you ever noticed how much easier it is to communicate with someone if you share their views and values? When designing your external communication strategies, make sure that you know who your end customers are. Build up and assess your customer personas carefully, and think about the different preferences that each segment has. This means looking at all the shareholders of your brand and finding cross over points that resonate with all of them. Develop your own unique tone-of-voice and personality. Remember, your external community is looking for reasons to connect with you. Whether it’s an investor wondering where to put their money, or a customer, you need to make sure that you’re having the right impact. Don’t just copy what your competitors are doing.
Be Clear and utilise the power of repetition.
In the world of external brand communications, it’s important to find a good balance between sharing unique ideas and repeating your brand’s messages. Effective brand communication is all about explaining the same things in different creative ways so that you can make your brand information accessible to a wider group of people. Repeating certain aspects of your brand identity in your campaigns, events, and conversations with shareholders help to give you a level of credibility that’s crucial for long-term success.
What are the benefits of Planning External brand Communications?
At its core, you’ll save two things while building momentum in your brand: time and money.
Too often, organisations are guilty of producing mountains of communications material and content without a clear understanding of the intended impact on key audiences or the organisation’s bottom line. It’s a common misconception that a full external communication strategy and program are only needed by or affordable for the largest corporations. But in reality, any communication platform is cheap when it’s effective. But understanding what “effective” looks like is the key to perfecting your communications game plan and sticking to it and measuring the results and adjusting accordingly.
Building an external brand communications strategy is complicated. It requires you to think carefully about how you can translate your brand message into the right language for a range of different audiences. However, when it’s used correctly, external communications can also help you to achieve a lot of important brand objectives.
The important thing to remember is that external communication isn’t just about marketing, it’s about having real, valuable discussions with the people outside of your brand. Through these discussions, you can develop useful insights to constantly realign your brand to the market. Communication is the key to any good relationship, make sure that you have the right strategy for your brand.