Leveraging External Communication in Your Marketing Campaigns
Did you know that growing a successful business is kind of hard? No, really. For starters, you need to develop a concept. Not some ordinary concept either. You need a great concept. A product or service that customers really want and need, and unless you’re inventing something categorically new, you also need a way to make your product or service stand out among the rest in your industry. Leveraging external communication, then, is a must.
To make your business stand out, you need to know and understand your audience. Understanding your audience will help you to create a brand identity.
So, what is brand identity? Brand identity is all the elements that a company creates to portray the right image to its consumers. Think about commercials you see now.
Commercials hardly ever show you the product, but what they do show you is the experience as it relates to the product. This isn’t by accident, and they didn’t get bored with shooting images of products. Brand identity has evolved into selling consumers the life they want, and your brand identity tells consumers that your product is going to help them on the road to their own goals.
Your brand identity is the perception the world has of your company. It’s what makes you instantly recognizable, especially among your target audience. It’s also the foundation that builds the connection between consumers and your company. Connection begets loyalty, and loyalty means a lot in the modern landscape of marketing.
Leveraging external communication
As you develop a plan for your brand identity, you need to form a strategic marketing plan that includes marketing campaigns and an external communication strategy. Marketing campaigns are conducted through various channels to facilitate the projection of your brand identity. They will start, stop, grow, and develop over time to meet new goals.
As for external communication strategies, these are the methods you employ to capture the public’s attention, or at least the public in your part of the world. Think of your external communication strategies as your brand’s conversation with the world at large. This can range from the presentations you give to shareholders and customer service to text messaging and social media posts made by your brand.
Brand relationships are more important now than ever before because consumers feel a personal connection to their favorite brands now. Brands aren’t just products and services. They generate feelings, loyalty, and expectations. That’s why leveraging external communication is so important.
Since brand relationships are so important, it’s crucial to understand how your business can create a communication strategy that speaks directly to your audience. Speaking to your audience is also an important part of growing your audience.
In business, as in life, growth and development are everything. So, you need to be familiar with ways you can add volume to your external communication.
Types of external communication
Website or blog
Your brand’s website and blog are both great formats for external communication. Your website can contain important details and useful information about your company and product(s). Websites can provide an About page, core beliefs, FAQs, and the central messaging you want to convey.
A blog is also an educational outlet to teach people about your product(s) and services. You can also use it to make announcements about changes and exciting developments. By including a place for consumers to comment or contact your business, you can start to develop that consumer conversation that leads to well-established brand identity.
Consumer relationships are key, and like all good relationships, two-way communication is paramount. It’s easy to think you need to talk to get your message across, but a lot of your brand development is done through listening too.
Live events and conferences
In the midst of a pandemic, the idea of live events and conferences seems like ancient history, and without technology, maybe it would have been. The good news for business owners is while face-to-face is an important part of developing brand presence and building relationships, there are ways to do it remotely and safely. In fact, when brands announce a live event, people naturally and easily assume they mean a live streaming event.
Likewise, conferences and seminars can be done through videoconferencing. These are great tools to reach a broader audience, and you can use these to really set the tone you want for your brand.
You can’t talk about external communication strategies without including social media. Almost every business has a presence on social media. Social media allows the conversation to continue. It’s vital that if you’re using social media to communicate that you use it to listen and respond to comments. This is an effective way to provide customer service, and it gives you access to feedback that you might otherwise miss.
Social media is also a great way to redirect traffic back to your website, and it makes it easier to share content with a larger audience to break into new market segments.
Text messaging communication is quickly becoming popular among businesses and consumers. Text messaging can, again, redirect traffic to your website, but if used effectively, it can give you instant access to your consumer’s attention. You aren’t just redirecting traffic, you’re redirecting consumer thoughts to your brand.
The ROI on text messaging campaigns is amazing, and it has a higher click-through rate than it’s older cousin, email marketing. There are services that provide you with the tools to do mass texting, schedule texts for convenient times and thoroughly plan a text messaging campaign to be almost automated.
This is still a viable option when you need an external communications strategy. You can make your voice heard when you need to get out the information on upcoming events, important updates, and dates to remember.
Allowing for a question and answer portion is recommended, and since media outlets have their own brand images now, it’s important to consider whether or not those brand images align with yours before choosing a media outlet. You are the company you keep and all.
Improving external communication
You’ve got a brand image strategy. You understand the available types of external communication platforms. You are ready to start making improvements to your external communications to make your voice heard even more. Improving your external communication can have a major impact on your brand growth.
Brand growth can create the growth you need to develop a long-term relationship with your customers. So, how do you improve external communication?
Know your audience
Understanding your target audience, from their spending power to their demographics to what speaks to them and motivates them, means that you can speak to consumers in a way that resonates with them.
You don’t just need to know your communication volume, but you also need to know how to speak to your customers. You want your message to resonate with them, and to do that, you need to know how to speak your audience’s language.
For example, if you want to speak to middle schoolers, you need to understand the importance of a meme and how much that’s used in their everyday language. In order to break into other market segments, you will need to diversify your communication skills.
Your product may be meant for a middle schooler and that middle schooler’s mom, but how you deliver your messages to each of those groups can impact on their perceptions of your brand. You need to know the different approaches to take.
Know your channels
Different marketing channels will amplify your message to different segments and in different ways. Implementing multiple marketing channels is quickly becoming the standard practice for successful marketing.
Your marketing techniques will seem almost fluid to consumers, and they work together to direct the flow back to your brand and your product. Using the various channels to redirect in different ways is what modern external communication is all about.
Know your value
Know your value as a brand, yes, but also know the value of each and every message you send out into the world. Your brand’s identity can depend on just one sent message.
Social depictions spread quickly now, and anything you say can, and will, be used at a later time. Don’t just put messages out there to have them out there. Use your messaging and platforms to highlight and communicate what matters to your brand, represent your values, and define your personality.
External communications are an important part of any business’s marketing campaigns and strategic plan for market growth. Developing your brand identity, familiarizing yourself with the communication strategies available to you, and knowing your target market well will give you the tools you need to expand and improve your growth and development.
Remember that communication is a two-way street, and you should always provide consumers with access to talking with you on some level. External communication is about more than just talking.