What is messaging? How are key messages developed?
Simply put, messaging is a term to describe how you talk about who you are and why you exist as an organization. It communicates key points you consistently make when you reach out to your audience. And it always ties back to your brand.
Different messages can be developed for different purposes, such as speeches, fundraising campaigns or presentations. They should also be developed for different audiences. You may want to consider crafting a set of short, standard phrases or paragraphs to describe your organization, programs and services. Then, as you need to reach out to specific audiences, implement new campaigns or communicate programs, you’ll have standard language ready to tailor to your purpose.
A well-crafted message will highlight your unique benefits, target your audience, support your mission and often include a call to action. Follow these three steps to develop messages that motivate.
- Think about what you want people to know about your organization and your cause. What do you want them to say about you? What do you want them to do?
- Develop a few core messages that connect the dots between what you do and how it relates to your audience. Develop messages around a single idea. Keep language simple and use analogies or personal stories to get your point across. Make your messages believable. Provide evidence such as numbers to increase credibility.
- Be consistent with delivery. Each message you deliver should reflect your brand – that is, who you are. Highlight what is relevant to the issue and your audience, but be sure to include a consistent statement about your organization. This makes your messaging memorable and helps position you in the market and in the minds of your audience.