Who is your target audience and why are they important?
So, why communications? Sharing and disseminating what you are doing is key in order to keep all those involved in the project informed, but also to generate visibility amongst different stakeholders regarding the work that you are doing. You want people to find out about your project! At the same time, you want people to understand why your project is important, what changes it is generating, and to even encourage them to get involved. In order to share information, you must first identify your target audience. Different types of audience can include: donors, local or national authorities, civil society/ community, other youth organizations. You also have to determine why they are significant, meaning why is it important that they be informed about your project.
What are your communications objectives?
Once you have set a target audience, next, it’s time to determine what information will be shared with each type of audience. Your project’s communication objectives will reflect what you want your target audience to learn, take away or act upon. Do you want to persuade, to advocate, or to change a behavior? Do you want to inform your audience about progress made, results achieved? Identify the key messages that you will convey to each type of audience to reach your objectives. Think about the information they need so that you can reach your communication objectives.
What communications channels will you use?
Once you have your target audience and objectives, you have to identify the channels (or how) you will best convey the key messages and reach your target audience. Options can include: social media, websites, print, press. Keep in mind that channels will differ depending on the type of audience. Try to be creative while showing the value of your project in order to stand out. Likewise, you should determine the timing and frequency of your messages (the when). Furthermore, consider your constraints, which can be your budget, or access to specific technology. Remember that the most effective ways of reaching out to people is not always the most expensive one. Finally, communication is a job that takes lots of time, keep in mind that a team member might need to take on these tasks full-time.