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  • Writer's pictureRichard Pagett

Nail your messaging in the ‘new normal’

Getting your key messages spot on is a priority for communications and marketers right now. Changing customer buying habits, supply chain issues and product availability means the challenges for comms professionals are numerous. But they can in part be overcome with some basic planning and process in place. Here are 5 hints and tips for getting that message planning right.

1. Set your strategy

This is so important and sets the direction for your messaging. In the current climate, your strategy may reflect your company’s need to become a voice within your industry, the search for new revenue streams, HR issues or even just survival. Whatever that is, a strategy is a short, one-line statement that zones in on what you want to achieve and makes it clear for you and your colleagues the direction in which to travel.

2. Map your audiences

Now is a good time to go right back to basics and map out who your audiences now are. A surprising amount of companies do not do this, but it will give you immediate clarity on who you need to talk to. For instance, if you are launching a product into the construction supply chain, your stakeholders may include distributors, merchants, installers, trade press and even internal colleagues too. But what’s changed? Your map will help you figure out the ‘new normal’ for your customers, what you need to say to them and which tactics you need to deploy to reach them.

3. Build your narrative

Once you have mapped out your audiences, it becomes much simpler to create your key messages for them. Start with a master narrative which reflects your strategy from step 1 and brings shape and direction to the rest of your messaging. You can then get more granular as you work on your messaging for each audience. By doing this you are creating a message framework which can be adjusted as business climates change.

4. It’s a living thing!

The landscape is moving very quickly, so make sure your key messaging is a living document. It may even change hourly or daily so review and amend on a regular basis.

5. Share your message framework

Producing and sharing your key messaging with the rest of your business will bring many benefits. It gives direction, reassurance and consistency and at the very least gives management, right up to board level, a communications foundation upon which to work in these challenging times.

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