Top 7 Ways a Communications Consultant Can Help You
By Bobbi Linkemer
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The building blocks of any effective communications strategy are (1) your message, (2) your audience, and (3) the vehicle to get your message across. Communications consultants provide a wide range of services for organizations and individuals to assemble and execute the communications strategy. There are almost as many ways to package your message as there are messages. Here are some of those packages:
In today's frenetic, over-scheduled world, communication is often tucked into the spaces between activities. Two particularly effective vehicles for taking in information on the run are cassette tapes and CDs. Since almost everyone listens to them at home, in the car, or while exercising, what better way to communicate, motivate, educate, inform, market, persuade, or train virtually any audience?
- Corporate Communications
Corporate communications are the ways in which businesses convey messages to their internal and external audiences. The internal audience consists of all levels of employees and management, as well as the board of directors. The purpose of employee communications is to have messages travel in both directions: from management down through the ranks, and from employees up through channels to the very top of the organization. The external audience is everyone else - shareholders, the public, consumers, competitors, and other businesses.
- Marketing communications
Marketing communications is an umbrella term for such disciplines as advertising, direct mail, public relations, special events, media placement, multi-media presentations, billboards, newsletters, TV and radio spots, and Websites. Each is a specialized vehicle that can be used alone or in concert with any of the others. Individually or collectively, marketing communications has a single purpose - to market a service or product to a particular audience.
Meetings are integral to the way business is conducted and information is communicated in corporate America. Yet, few people enjoy them, and fewer still conduct them very well. As a facilitator, the most important thing you can do is plan. Establish an objective, develop a game plan, choose the most appropriate type of meeting to hold, and invite only those people who have a reason to be there. Then, of course, you need skills to conduct the meeting, to keep the discussion on track, to engage the opinions and talents of all participants, and to achieve your objective.
- Internet & Intranet
You must have a presence on the Internet, today, to talk to the world at large, but it is becoming equally important to talk to your own people via your company intranet. This technology, coupled with internal e-mail, is fast replacing printed internal communications. This is a complex medium, requiring specialized technical skills and a new way of conveying information to busy employees. It's fast moving, graphic, and the ultimate sound/sight byte. Web surfers have short attention spans; if you don't catch their eyes or ears instantly, with the click of a mouse, they're gone. Web copy has to be short, snappy, informative, and memorable.
- Public Relations
Public relations (PR) is both an element of marketing and a distinct discipline that comprises many facets - articles in the general or trade press, media relations, press materials, promotions and premiums, special events, crisis management, and a host of others. Some PR practitioners specialize in one or two of them; others are generalists and do a little of everything. A great deal of training, ability, and effort goes into every aspect of public relations, which has become a very sophisticated field over the years.
- Speeches & Presentations
There are few formats for presenting important information that make a bigger impact on an audience than a well-delivered, verbal presentation. A speaker has the opportunity to communicate through all of the senses: seeing, hearing, reading nonverbal cues, and sometimes even touching. This can be a golden opportunity to get your message across if the speech is planned and executed correctly. An effective presentation must include a clearly thought-out theme; an easy-to-follow organization of main points; strong, convincing delivery; and attractive, informative visual aids, if appropriate.
Bobbi Linkemer is a writer and corporate communications consultant [http://www.writeanonfictionbook.com/Corp_Commun.html]. She is the author of 12 books under her own name and has been a professional writer for 40 years, a magazine editor and journalist, and a book-writing teacher. Her clients range from Fortune 100 companies to entrepreneurs. Visit her Website at: http://www.WriteANonfictionBook.com
Article Submitted On: August 13, 2007