There are 5 questions every good reporter asks:
But…WHY? Why are those the staple questions? Simply put, it’s because you really can’t tell the entire story well without having the answers to each of them.
All this week I’m going to be talking about how you can put the 5 W’s to work for your organization to ensure that every story you tell is well-rounded and communicated effectively. WHY? Because I know that your Chamber or your Association will be better prepared to have a positive impact on the community or trade group you serve when you communicate your message more efficiently.
So let’s get started. The lesson for today is WHAT.
WHAT IS your organization all about? WHAT is your mission as a group and individually? WHAT are you willing to do to achieve your goals and WHAT is your organization NOT going to do to get there?
I truly believe that we, as organization management professionals, need to do a MUCH better job at telling people WHAT WE ARE. This is especially true with Chambers of Commerce who tend to be more visible to their overall community, but it’s true of Trade Associations as well. Ask 100 people on the streets what a Chamber IS and you’ll get 100 different (and mostly WRONG) answers. We can’t blame them, though…it’s OUR fault because we don’t take the time to explain it. Let me make it simple for you: The XYZ Chamber of Commerce is an Economic Development engine. Our mission is to make our community a better place to live, work and play. Steal it. Use it. Communicate it wide and far. Make sure every investor in your organization and every community stakeholder outside the organization knows it and can repeat it easily. If you can accomplish this one task, your organization will be FAR better recognized within its community.
For Trade Associations, the communications plan really needs to be focused on the WHAT to investors (members if you insist), and prospects. The simple statement I use: The XYZ Association exists to support the XYZ industry. We provide legislative advocacy, continuing education and leadership that has and will continue to help shape our industry moving forward.
If the MISSION STATEMENT of your organization is more complicated or less effective, CHANGE IT! Branding this message is the most important thing you can do for your group. If you’re already doing this well, please take a moment to leave a comment or even an example of ways your organization is already communicating WHAT YOU ARE to your larger community.
And…be watching your email TOMORROW for our discussion on WHERE!
Thanks for reading. Make it a great day, and don’t forget to reach out to me if there’s anything at all I can do to support your efforts or those of your organization!