Follow these Dos and Don'ts:
- Do make sure that each of your target regions has a representative directly involved in helping to shape the corporate communications program.
- Do adapt your brand image for different demographics whose touch-points may be different – smartphone apps for teenagers versus an official website for pensioners. That said, don’t make assumptions: 37 per cent of Facebook users are aged 45 or over.
- Do remember that engagement with online communities enables you to harness their opinions, ideas and wisdom on topics well beyond sundry product or service complaints. You can then use all of these to inform corporate communications.
- Don’t do a brand exercise without exploring your business’s existing personality – you will end up the same as the competition, without a brand identity that people can buy into.
- Don’t forget how terms such as “home”, “family”, “love”, “honour”, “duty” and so on skew meanings across cultures.
- Don’t fail to embrace new technologies in your corporate communications process. Adoption of mobile technologies by consumers has, for example, placed new demands on how companies manage and distribute content to their customers.
Apply also the following TIPS:
1. Brand: product and communications planning must work together as part of a cohesive whole. A unifying strategy and joined-up planning are critical to driving cost‑effective, integrated communications.
2. Research: communications activity can so often look great but miss the target with the wrong tone, language, imagery or media. The cornerstone of relevant, effective communications is insight, derived from rigorous research.
3. Control: maintaining brand discipline across markets, languages and outlets is tough. An efficient online resource or library is a pre-requisite, centrally controlled, interactive and really easy to use. And, as a general principle, keep brand rules and regulations stripped out and simple. It’s better for colleagues to abide by 10 “must haves” rather than ignore 20 “like to haves”.
4. Flexibility: with a seemingly unending variety of media available, understanding the relevance of each channel to different consumers on different occasions is vital. It is also critical to plan content and creative to work powerfully in each channel.
5. Engagement: we wouldn’t expect a dinner date to go too well if our partner was expected to listen, but not express a view.
Dr. Antony Michail
Anacalyspsis Strategy & Marketing Consultants