Saturday, May 23, 2009

How many ways do you plan to say the same thing?

I saw something interesting today and had immediate dilemma - which way to communicate it:

1. E-newsletter (email)
2. Post on association web site
3. Association Facebook page
4. Personal Facebook page
5. Twitter
6. Association blog

Since my association doesn't have print communications (and rarely direct mail), didn't have to add those options to the list too. Or there would be 8 options.

The thing is, there are members who get communications from us all 6 ways so the idea of giving the exact same info to them 6 ways is somewhat horrific. If it was me, by the time I got the same thing the third time I'd by annoyed and really stop reading - and if it kept happening I'd start removing some of the contact options as I'd really only need it once. For example, I stopped having the newspaper delivered after knowing I had already read most of the articles online.

The other detail is some of the communications options overlap - because they can with social media. So a blog post can land on Facebook, and also be noted via Twitter. An email may relay there's a blog post. And all 4 may arrive within minutes of each other. Maybe this makes sense with the most urgent association info - such as a legislative crisis - but maybe not with general association news, updates and articles. Do members have the time and desire to see the same thing from us 6 or 8 times - the same day/week?

When my association transitioned from print to fax to email, the effort was to have the most timely vehicle have the most timely info. But now, 5 out of 6 communications options have the same degree of timeliness potential - that is, immediate delivery. So my thinking is that each communications vehicle needs to be as unique as possible - not just each being a shorter summary of the other or all linking to the exact same place. But it's a struggle.

When there's something interesting to report, how will you decide which way to do it?

No comments: