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Developing effect key messages 8 January 2007

Posted by Catriona Pollard in PR tips.

p_public_relations1.jpgKey messages are the core message you want your target audiences to hear and remember. They create meaning and headline the issue.

Key messages allow you to control communications and enhance relationships with your target audiences.

Key messages are designed to work out what you really need to get across on the topic to the audiences. What are the critical messages that you want to communicate?

They are what you must say and get across in the communication situation — irrespective of what questions the audience asks.

With your audience in mind and focused on your objectives, you should work out in advance of the communications situation what you must say on the topic concerned.

It is best not to have any more than seven messages on any one topic.

Key messages are commonly known as elevator statements or BBQ statements — what we want our target audiences to say when they are discussing the topic around a BBQ with their friends.

Criteria for key messages

  • Be believable — support with evidence

  • Be understood — reflect stakeholders understanding

  • Be distinctive — clear competitive awareness

  • Be agreed — company strategy

  • Be credible — know your stuff

  • Drive your agenda

  • Avoid negativity

  • Enhance positively

  • Use the brand

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