Part I. Oh, the Places You’ll Go…

Could it be that creating an effective awareness campaign begins with your own awareness?As someone who has been directly involved in creating, promoting, and managing internal communication programs for well over a decade, I can earnestly say, “Yes, yes indeed, (98 and ¾ percent guaranteed).”

First Things First

Have you been tasked with creating an awareness campaign simply because it falls into your area of responsibility? Or are you the one who identified the gap in your organization’s communication strategy that raised the need for the awareness campaign in the first place? Whether an awareness campaign is one more thing on your “to do” list or it’s your brain child, it doesn’t matter. Either way, before you create or kick off anything, your own level of awareness about such things as your company’s culture must be solid before you start.

Build Partnerships

Any time you’re going to be communicating something to a wide audience in your organization, you need to make sure key leadership believes in your concept. Even more than that, including them enough in the decision-making process will help them feel some level of ownership. Far too often,we roll out awareness programs prematurely, only for them to be thwarted by a battle of wills between the internal marketing/communications department and the implementing department.

- Sponsors -

Creative and perfectly branded folks usually have their own ideas of what company communications should look like (that is their job, after all) and the messages they should contain (even if they’re not the content experts). As a result, they may demand to be in charge of producing your awareness programs. However, when you take the time to work up front to build partnerships with your business colleagues (Communications, Human Resources, Operations, etc.), you may find that not only will they offer some good ideas, they may also stand up for your programs rather than try to circumvent your efforts.

A benefit of building partnerships is they can not only save your awareness programs, they can also elevate the credibility of those programs. Who knows? One of your business partners may even agree to pick up part of the tab of a program in order to integrate their messages into your (now expanding) platform. At the same time, as you develop positive alliances with other departments, you prove yourself to be a better business partner – which can prove beneficial in areas well beyond your awareness campaigns.

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