Say less – Say it simply – Say it often

by | Oct 9, 2020

The title says it all – that’s the essence of getting your message across with impact. 

There’s much to learn from the COVID crisis and surrounding communication messages, methods and products and doubtless much will be reflected on in the coming months. 

Many businesses and organisations in public, commercial and 3rd sector, are going to see significant change and reorganisation – change in services offered, change in numbers of staff, change in staff role. Now more than ever your messages need to have clarity, simplicity and unambiguous. Here are TandemComms tips to simple messaging and getting your key points to hit home with your audience:

1 – Say less – How many times do your shout at the TV, ‘come on get to the point’? Don’t have your audience doing that. Get to the point. You don’t have to write an essay. Getting to the point ensures that your audience hears what you are trying to say, rather than getting lost trying to figure it out. It will also enable your message to be shared more effectively. You could try summarising your main points in the beginning with bullet points, then provide the detail and deeper explanation and finally summarise again at the end. You must include your call to action! But remember fewer words mean greater absorption

2 – Say it simply – Don’t think you have all the answers. Ask the right questions of your key audiences – understand them – consult, engage with them and listen to them. They will have some great thoughts and ideas to help you craft your message. You aren’t going to please everyone but understanding your audience and what spins their props is essential. Then keep it simple, using imagery and stories which work because that appeals to emotion and we make many decisions based on emotion. As with saying less, then saying it simply, means that your message is more likely to be shared. If it’s being shared you have cracked it.

3 – Say it often – In today’s frenetic, noisy and excited surroundings, it is really important to keep to a consistent message and ensure that you say it often. Repetition often means retention – that’s what all the research says. Your audience will more lively retain information if it’s repeated.

It’s all simple stuff really but it does work and its often surprising how often the opposite happens in messaging.