Why is community engagement a secret weapon in your marketing tool kit?
No matter what the size of your business, engaging with the community, which has an interest in your project or product, is always a smart move. Proactively reaching out to people with information helps foster a greater understanding of a project and can assist in allaying any fears or concerns that individuals may have.
Engagement can be used to gain a greater knowledge of your target audiences or stakeholders, take people on a journey while you are building or developing something new, or can simply assist in delivering communications to a disengaged audience.
If you are considering whether your business could benefit from engaging its community check out our top tips first to give you a ‘Fresh’ perspective.
- Stakeholder investment
The Fresh PR & Marketing team follows the International Association of Public Participation (IAP2) framework and the very first step in this process is to determine the level of engagement required. Engagement is often a two-way communication street and it is important to manage expectations of the process. Would you like to inform your community about your plans or are you looking for them to be more involved?
When you effectively engage with your community or key stakeholders, they’re more likely to invest in your vision. When they feel heard and understood, they’ll feel more inclined to be a part of it and use your services in the future. Sometimes all it takes is for you to let your stakeholders know about your plan, for them to feel like you genuinely care.
Community engagement is all about trust and transparency. You’re giving the community a chance to feel connected to a project and simply by informing them along the way, they’re more likely to trust that you are authentic and will do the right thing.
- Greater knowledge
Seeking feedback from your community will give you a wealth of knowledge about your stakeholders and how they’ll respond to your project; and perhaps an insight into how you can do things better in future. Your business is part of the community, so understanding what matters to them is a crucial part of planning your communications.
- Better outcomes
A meaningful community engagement process can either make or break a project or a business. Engaging with your community can ensure you make better-informed decisions; deliver products or services that are aligned to your community; achieve outcomes that are more positive; and therefore develop a reputation as a valuable contributor to the local landscape.
Our team is fully equipped to provide thorough and thoughtful community engagement with IAP2 training. Reach out to our team to have a chat for a ‘Fresh’ perspective!