Internal communication and external communication professionals can learn a lot from each other. Both groups of communicators are competing with the 24/7 news cycle and increasing expectations about the quality of content. How can you cut through the noise? How can you command attention? These three PR tactics can help you begin to break through to make an impact.
What Are PR Tactics?
Public Relations (PR) tactics are strategic approaches used by external communication teams to manage the company’s reputation and relationship with external stakeholders, such as customers, media, investors, and the public.
PR tactics encompass various methods and techniques, including media relations, press releases, events, influencer collaborations, crisis communication, and more. These tactics are focused on shaping the external image, messaging, and brand perception of a company.
Internal comms teams can adapt and borrow strategies from the PR world to enhance their internal communication efforts. By applying PR-inspired tactics to internal comms, professionals can effectively engage employees, manage internal perceptions, and strengthen the overall internal reputation of the organization.
These tactics can help create a positive and well-informed corporate environment. Let’s talk about a few.
PR Tactics for Internal Communicators
- Break through the noise. There are many distractions communicators need to compete with. To get employee attention use catch titles, eye-catching visuals, and graphics.
- Keep messages short and visual. We spend an average of 13.4 seconds reading an email. So, break your messages into bullets and smaller paragraphs.
- Follow brand standards. It’s important to follow external brand standards on internal messages. Use the same colors and fonts, but also incorporate the brand’s purpose, mission, and values into comms to help convert employees into brand advocates.
Partnering With External Communications Teams
To really make a difference at your company, make sure you are partnering with your marketing team and learning about the external comms tactics they use daily. You might be surprised to learn that you have the same goals around employee advocacy or internal branding or that you need the same suite of tools to get your jobs done.
Here’s how you can foster a strong partnership with the external communications teams:
- Align your goals. Start by aligning your objectives with the external communications team. Although your immediate focus is on internal communication, you may find common ground with the external team in areas such as employee advocacy, internal branding, or brand reputation. Understanding each other’s objectives will help you work towards shared outcomes and collaborate effectively.
- Share insights regularly. Meet with your marketing and PR team regularly to share progress, insights, and how you’re tracking towards your shared goals.
- Collaborate on campaigns. Look for opportunities to collaborate on communication campaigns that bridge internal and external messaging. By joining forces, you can amplify your communication efforts, save resources, and ensure consistent messaging across both internal and external channels.
- Share resources and tools. Explore the possibility of sharing resources, tools, and platforms that support communication efforts. You may find that you both require similar technology solutions for content creation, distribution, or analytics. By leveraging shared resources, you can streamline processes, improve efficiency, and save your organization money.
By building a strong partnership with marketing, you can tap into a broader range of resources, expertise, and insights. This collaboration enhances the overall effectiveness of communication efforts, creates consistency in messaging, and ultimately strengthens the organization’s reputation both internally and externally.
Other Marketing Tactics That Work for Internal Comms
A few of the tactics that make a big impact for both internal and external audiences are:
- Get attention quickly. Marketers might use pithy post captions or click-bait titles to get their audience to stop scrolling or open an email. Internal comms can also focus on titles and captions on internal messages to increase engagement on their content.
- Keep messages short and visual. By focusing on visuals (which really are worth 1,000 words), you are more likely to get attention. Whether you’re working in video or text as a medium, keeping your messages concise and to the point is always helpful.
- Stay on brand. When external branding is continued on internal channels, you create a strong sense of place and identity at your company.
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