Organisations dedicated to public impact do amazing, interesting, important work.
They design cities for the future, balance tax-payer funded budgets, ensure service level expectations are met by the people they serve.
But do people care?
Where many organisations fall short in their community engagement strategy is by not communicating in a way that resonates with people.
So while these things are extremely important, the problem is they rarely capture the interest of busy customers, civilians, voters.
The challenge here is to figure out how to make these public policy discussions important AND interesting to the people we need to engage. The focus should then be about developing “Newsworthy content”. Content which is both important and interesting.
With short time frames and budgets and often limited skills in communication design, public service organisations struggle to develop “Newsworthy” content well.
But this doesn't need to be so time-intensive.
There’s a really simple strategy to make your stories newsworthy and be heard by people we need to reach:
- Identify the best examples you can find around the world;
- Ask yourself: what are the key messages and ways of telling these messages that appeal?
- How can you augment them to suit your purpose?
For instance, rather than creating engagement around a health campaign with statistics and graphs, see how Sport England got viral attention through the 'This Girl Can' campaign to get more women playing sport:
While not everyone can afford such well produced content, the campaign does connect with people on important (every person should be able to play sport) with interesting (an amazing number of quality examples that we can all relate to.)
How can you apply some lessons from campaigns like this for your next engagement?
Don’t forget that imitation is the best form flattery. It might even equal innovation.
If you found this information useful, see how you can measure the return on your investment for every community consultation.