So much of what we do as Communications practitioners will revolve around catering to the technical Communication needs of what our clients want. Be it publicity or events management, whoever we meet as Communications people may end up being a client in the future and that is why building relationships with people is pivotal for us. Relationships are built with clients, with the media, with events organizers and just a lot of people in general. These relationships, most of which end up being business must be built on trust, communication, and mutual respect. like personal relationships, they require managing and nurturing.
So how exactly can we build personal relationships?
- Be relevant. When possible, customize or even contextualize your communications to personalize your audience experience. In a media world of infinite websites, customized social media profiles, and 1,000+ TV channels, audiences expect messaging tailored to their lives and interests. The kety is to think about audience segmentation here.
- Provide value. Give away some of your secrets. Provide the answers to some of your audience’s most pressing questions. By providing value, you can gain credibility, become the authority, or go-to resource on the subject.
- Welcome dialogue. Listen to your community members and respond to what was said. Dialogue helps to establish relationships and engage your communities. It also provides a platform through which feedback can be generated.
- Be responsive. Respond to feedback (both negative and positive), even if you’re simply letting your audience know that you’ve heard what they said. Often, you can turn a negative experience into a positive one.