Thursday, April 2, 2020

Three Failings of Coronavirus Communications, and a Valuable Resource to Help You Address Them

I've been critical here of organizational communications regarding the coronavirus. Why? Three reasons:
  1. They fail to address the "what's in it for me." I've received a lot of email from entities I don't recall engaging, or ones that might have engaged once, or others that I've never heard of at all. In the vast majority of instances there was little connection to me--it was like, gee, we need to communicate about something very important with you because you're on our email distribution lists. The sum total has been inane and  worthless communication. In other words, there's a bigger, broader, more important purpose here that transcends the narrow "we need to do something because we need to do something" view that many organizations seem to have adopted during this crisis. 
  2. They fail to prioritize stakeholders. Not all stakeholders are created equal. Therefore, not all stakeholders need to hear from you (if at all), much less at the same time (and with the same frequency). 
  3. They Fail to Consider the Frequency of Communications. I feel like I'm bombarded by emails from one organization (a school) where I teach one class a year. I'm talking multiple emails a day.  Sure, news is breaking rapidly--but not that rapidly.
To help address these and related challenges associated with communicating about the coronavirus, I recommend Doug Levy's book Communications Handbook for Coronavirus. Since I reviewed the first edition of the book, Doug has spent time updating it. He's incorporated the insight he's gleaned from working on the front lines to plan and execute communication strategies related to the coronavirus. His sage counsel can help you to cut through the fluff to provide accurate, timely, and relevant information to key stakeholders. 

You can get your copy of the Communications Handbook for Coronavirus here

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