I’m headed to Austin, Texas today to teach a workshop I’m calling “So What and Who Cares? Getting Your Communications Right in 2012” for the Texas Association of Nonprofit Organizations.
You answer the So What? question by making your messaging as relevant as possible to the people you are communicating with. But what does that mean? What creates relevance for people?
You can create relevant messaging in lots of different ways, but here are my six favorites. (Yes, more alliteration. Sorry, it’s like a disease).
1. Rewarding. The benefits of following through on the call to action in the message are clear.
2. Realistic. Following through on the message is doable, because any obvious barriers are addressed.
3. Real Time. The message feels timely and works within the context of current events and other influences.
4. Responsive. The message proves that you are listening, and taking people’s concerns and ideas into account.
5. Revealing. New information or perspectives are shared, or you are telling a dramatic, engaging story that unfolds over time (in other words, you get us hooked).
6. Refreshing. The message is delivered with personality — with an interesting, authentic style.
I consider the first three — rewarding, realistic, and real time — to be essential in the development of your core messages. These are the essentials that I teach in the message development section of the Total Focus Nonprofit Marketing Workshop, for example.
The second three — responsive, revealing, and refreshing — are particularly helpful as you develop content for your website, newsletter, social media, etc. to convey those core messages.