One of the hottest buzzwords in internal comms today is ‘360 degree comms’. As with most buzzwords it has many other related terms such as ‘holistic internal comms’ and ‘omni-channel comms’.
Essentially, they all mean the same thing. It’s about building internal comms campaigns that take a 360 view of the employee engagement process. It’s about understanding what employees need at different stages of the journey, using the most appropriate channels at each stage and delivering the most engaging content.
It can be when you develop an internal comms strategy that supports this approach. It requires having the right infrastructure in place, and a clear process for creating the assets you need to drive engagement. Once you have these, every campaign you launch can be aligned with a 360 degree strategy.
What does a 360 degree internal comms strategy look like?
In my opinion a 360 degree comms strategy starts with a basic process document. It takes content creators through a series of questions and activities that align your campaigns with employees’ needs at every stage.
That process could look at bit like this:
Pinpoint target audience – outline who the campaign is for and the purpose of the campaign.
Set targets for campaign – be clear on what outcomes you want for the campaign using measurable metrics.
Identify stages for the campaign – e.g. awareness, engagement, adoption, feedback.
Define objectives for each stage – clicks thrus, email opens, video views, sign ups, completed feedback surveys etc.
Select communication methods – choose the most appropriate communication methods for each stage of the campaign. For example, to raise awareness – posters, intranet banners and screensavers are highly effective. To get engagement – social media posts in closed company groups, pop ups, emails and messages on the company’s intranet see positive uptake. To increase adoption – video comms, animations and interactive content get excellent results.
Decide on the frequency of comms – there’s a marketing ‘rule of 7’ which says that people need to see a message seven times before action is taken. The same can apply to internal comms at each stage of the process.
Develop the creative and key messaging – a 360 degree campaign requires a 360 degree approach to the creative and messaging. The most successful campaigns are those that are consistent and subtly tweak the creative or messaging to reflect each stage and channel used.
Set up methods to measure success – by measuring all different comms throughout the campaign you have an opportunity to optimise the campaign further. Metrics can be used to increase its performance (by identifying weaknesses and strengths) and to inform future campaigns too.
A 360 degree comms strategy works because employees receive the most relevant and engaging content at each stage of the journey. Whether you call it a 360, holistic or omni-channel approach doesn’t matter, what does is the opportunity to increase employee engagement and deliver better bottom line results for your organisation.
Get in touch if you would like to discuss this in more detail!