Why does corporate communications matter? It’s a simple question, really, but how simple can it be answered? Let’s give it a shot.
Stakeholders. In a word, stakeholders is why this corporate function matters. Organizations seek to build strong, solid, trustworthy relationships with stakeholders, making communications a critical function for the entire business.
Why it matters – Stakeholders
- Internal – attract new employees; position as employer of choice; create transparency/trust with employees; retain employees
- Suppliers – earn trust; create credibility; reputation management
- Publics – earn trust; reputation management; get through a crisis;
- Media – establish/build reputation; get through a crisis
- Investors – stabilize/grow share price; attract investors; inspire positive analyst reports; reputation management.
From an external environmental perspective, organized and planned communications is important because of the many factors that are simply out of a company’s control, yet still need to be anticipated and dealt with: changing economic environment; technological changes; and, political changes.
Let’s look closer at “Messages”.
What are the best channels to use to communicate a message? Well, who is your audience? Where can you find them? How can you best pair the message with the recipients in a meaningful, effective manner?
“Old” channels can be summed up as “written” and “spoken”. Press releases, editorials, advertisements, perhaps a press conference.
“New” channels include electronic mediums – email, fax (new?!), voice mail (again, new?!), and e-meetings.
But still even “newer”…? Clearly social media, the Internet, buzz/viral/WOM, have taken communications to a new height.
At the end of the day, what role will you play? Will you craft the message? Create the plan? Interact with stakeholders?…and will you commit to management the overall reputation of your company?
Who’s Responsible for Your Reputation? – Read HBR article