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June 2, 2017
The Small Business Lie
June 22, 2017

2017 Internal Communication Trends

From our research and experience in the internal communications space, our speciality, we’ve compiled a quick list of the top trends for the year:

1.Personalisation

Communications directed at the individual make a difference.  By using EMS software you can embed a ‘Dear [name]’ field that pulls the employees first name from the linked database. Making the message more personal creates higher engagement – the individual is recognised by name and sees the message as less of a mass send whish they are likely to just delete without reading.

2.Short and sweet… and still on email

Although the email avalanche theory is still a thing, we’re seeing a return from targeted once a month or bi monthly content heavy newsletters to weekly blasts with a maximum of three key points.  Employees attention spans have diminished with information overload so short succinct well-designed emailers are proving highly effective.

Graphics are key.  Today’s workforce are attracted by engaging design that’s triggers emotion and therefore action – either to read the message or to act on the call to action.

3.Measurement

If you’re not measuring the effectiveness of your comms you’re missing a trick.  How many employees have opened your email and read it?  There’s a number of ways to track this.  Populate EMS systems with tracking include MailChimp and if you have some budget, Newsweaver.  Also if you are linking to stories on your intranet Google Analytics tracking links can be created on the intranet story and embedded into the newsletter to track direct hits to the articles.

Once you’re tracking your data you can gain key insights such as the type of content your audience are consuming more of, who the authors are or the topics.  This enables you to improve in the areas that aren’t gaining attraction or nuke them altogether and focus on the topics that work.

4.Conversation style of writing

Employees work across different sections of the business and therefore aren’t able to ‘get’ all the lingo that often creeps into stories and messages from HR to marketing to finance.  A more natural conversational tone that’s easy to get the just of the message is key to delivering comms with impact.

5.Employee generated content

Often referred to as crowd sourcing, using employees to interact with a campaign to generate content such as selfie videos, peer to peer recommendations or voting, sharing, liking and commenting on news articles is proving successful.  One of the reasons behind this growing trend in peer generated content is trust.  Employees trust each other often more than senior leaders.  Real people content has the power to inspire and influence employees without the risk of appearing insincere.

6.Cross channel repetition

As a result of information overload and the ever-slimming attention span, key messages need to be seen multiple times to get through.  We recommend spreading campaign messages across multiple channels and platforms to increase the chance of the message being seen at least once, with the aim of it being seen multiple times on different channels.

7.Use of #tags

Hash tags are no longer reserved for social media.  They’re being used in static printed content just as much as they are on social media platforms.  They create a familiarity for Millennials especially and create something a campaign can be centred around.  If you have internal chat platforms that use #tags they can be put to actual use, but even if not they are a current trend. #justsaying

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