The political season is in full swing and sound bites from candidates are making news. Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry and now Mitt Romney with his firing people statement have all been in the hot seat for things they’ve said. These candidates and their campaign managers will tell you that the sound bite was taken out of context and attempt to clear the air.
Effective communication is tricky business.
It’s up to the one communicating to ensure that the message is received as intended.
That means it is the responsibility of the business, the politician, the artist, the nonprofit organization to make sure the audience receives the message.
The difficulty for this crop of GOP candidates (or any political candidate for that matter) is that even though they are speaking to a targeted audience, the information is aired to us all. And if the sound bite rubs some of us wrong…the candidate will quickly find out about it.
Thankfully businesses have it a bit easier than political candidates.
The messages businesses create are for targeted audiences and are usually viewed only by those members. Day care centers send direct mail pieces crafted for families with school-aged children; not to recent retirees who just saw their last child off to college.
Now while your message may not make the 5 o’clock news for inciting a group to riot, make sure your communication is clear and written for your audience. Sending this group a message designed for company insiders could result in frustration and confusion. And that could negatively impact your bottom line and customer relations.
Take the time to craft a message that will be received by your audience just as you intended and avoid sound bite fallout.