The key to getting results from an internal communications campaign is about working with your sponsors to define clear outcomes (rather than outputs).
What will the campaign achieve if it’s successful?
The bottom line is…
- deliver a change, or
- help get something done (an aspect of the organisation’s work).
Critical success factors
Here’s a useful checklist:
- Have a clear objective that contributes to a shift in audience behaviour, knowledge and perception, or feelings
- Know how you will evaluate delivery against that objective
- Know how your campaign supports the organisation to achieve its mission and vision
- and/or one or more of its milestones, strategic priorities or objectives
- Use multiple channels during a clearly defined period of time in support of targeted stakeholder engagement activity*
- Include a means of evaluating the success of the campaign, ideally before, during, and after
*broadcast communications alone will struggle to deliver change. But they can be useful in reinforcing targeted stakeholder engagement.
A stitch in time saves nine
Spending time with your stakeholders to get the what (desired outcomes) and the why and how really straight and watertight is the best investment you can make.
Getting started without getting these properly nailed down can leave you adrift and adding to the comms churn to no point and purpose. Not helpful for your audience, or your sponsor, and demotivating for you.
Internal communicators will never stop being asked to ‘raise awareness/profile’ or deliver a change in ‘hearts and minds’. And helping our stakeholders to think more rigorously is often challenging – especially when they are under pressure to show that they are ‘doing’.
But we’ve gotta try. It’s our duty.