• Understand how to create messages that speak to the particular needs and interests of your audiences.
  • Be able to choose the communications channels (eg printed materials, face to face meetings, social media) that are right for your project, audiences and budget.
  • Set this out in a simple communications plan.

Create messages for your audiences

Understanding your audiences enables you to communicate in a way that speaks directly to their interests. This helps your communications to stand out amongst the mass of information these busy people face every day.

The practical actions to work through here are conducting simple, cost-effective audience research and creating key messages - the information that, above all else, you want your audiences to remember and respond to.

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Choose the right communications channels

Communications channels are all the different ways that it is possible to transmit a message or story to its intended audience. Websites, posters, reports, events, email and social media such as Twitter and Facebook – there are many different channels and the number is constantly growing.  

Being able to identify the ones that are right for your audiences, your project and the resources you have available is important.  

The decisions you make here will dictate how you allocate your time and budget, and will also give a strong indication of the communications skills you will need as your project progresses.

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Create a simple communications plan

At this point, a significant amount of work and thinking has gone into shaping your communications approach. This needs to be distilled into a communications plan.

A communications plan sets out the how and when you will communicate to your audiences. It will enable you to plan your time, budget for your communications and ensure your activities are on track.

The communications plan template in this section provides a format to use. The intention is to summarise the key actions so that it is easy to follow. If necessary, additional documents can be attached to the main communications plan as appendices.

Download the resources: 

Further sections

Article

Section 1: Planning for success

Build your communications team, identify your audiences and create a strategy.

Article

Section 3: Sustaining interest

This third section of communications in health care improvement offers guidance on how to sustain the interest and engagement...

Article

Section 4: Spreading your work

This section focuses on how communications can help spread the learning and ideas generated by your project. 

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