Program communication best practices

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Communications keep your program top of mind for employees, so when inspiration strikes, or a campaign launches, volunteers and donors will know where to go and how to take action. It’s a big job to promote a corporate purpose program but this article contains communication best practices that will help you build program awareness and drive behavior change.

1. Build Executive Support

Your program is a great opportunity for executives to lead by example. Spot opportunities for leaders to spread the word during times of crisis, on key awareness dates, or simply when they are passionate about a nonprofit. For your most important campaign communications of the year, ask an executive to deliver the call to action in an email, video, or all-hands meeting. 

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2. Empower your Ambassador Network

These generous volunteers cheerlead, rally and inspire their coworkers to get excited about giving, volunteering and taking positive actions. Empower your ambassador network to deliver communications to their specific office locations; after all, no one knows their communities better than they do. Equip ambassadors with program email signatures, email templates and all the information they need to amplify program communications.  Learn about how to build an ambassador network here.

3. Partner with Employee Resource Groups (ERGs)

Affinity groups and ERGs tend to bring together passionate subject matter experts on specific causes and issues. Work together with these groups on events or communications and enable your ERGs to promote giving back to the nonprofits that matter to them.

4. Team up with other departments

Ask payroll and HR to include messaging in their channels, such as reminders about payroll giving on pay slips and orientation to the program during new hire onboarding. Work with your communications team to learn what creative internal and external channels are available for you to use.

5. Infuse employee experience with purpose from day one

Walk new hires through your program during onboarding. Intentionally engage them with virtual or in-person volunteering activities and provide them with donation currency they can use in your program.  Read more about how to engage employees on day one here.

6. Communicate frequently

The more people are exposed to your program communications, the more likely you are to drive behavioral change. This is called the Rule of Seven – the theory that people need to hear a message seven times before they consider taking action. When you are planning for a large campaign, or just building program awareness consider planning seven communications to get the word out.

7. Use a multi-channel approach

Leverage all of your platforms to reach out to your people — no matter where they are — to ensure they feel connected to the culture and to each other. Think employee communications, intranets, social networks, apps, team meetings, QR codes, newsletters, zoom backgrounds and in-office LCD screens. This is where you can really get creative!

8. Build a 12-month communication plan

Planning ahead will help you reach more people and deliver major communications around your largest campaigns. To help you get started, we have a simple communication framework called Hum, Sing, Shout that will help you build a 12-month communication plan from the ground up. Work with your team to document your strategy and ensure everyone knows how they can contribute to making program communications impactful. 

 

Building partnerships, getting creative and having a plan are all essential to promoting your corporate purpose program. Whenever possible, look for opportunities to measure the impact of your communications. Use the Web Analytics Spark report to view peaks in site visits that align with communication launches. 

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