6 questions to ask when you’re writing marketing communications

9th September 2022 | Posted in Marketing communications

Whether you’re putting together a website, email campaign, brochure, newsletter or any other piece of marketing collateral, starting with these questions can help all the stakeholders focus on what you need to achieve and how.

What do we need to create?

Maybe it’s a brochure, but what sort of brochure? My current project is a mini-brochure around a set of related training courses that will be in pdf format and downloadable from a website. And there will be multiple mini-brochures that will be similar in format but with different content.

Who do you want to read it?

Being clear about your audience can really help a project. If you understand who you are writing for and what motivates them, you have a much better chance of persuading them to take the action you are looking for.

For my mini-brochure project, the messaging will be slightly different depending on whether we choose to address the potential trainee, their manager or the course booker, all of whom will have a different take on what matters.

What do you want them to do as the result of seeing this communication?

The call to action. Make it easy and make it obvious. And make sure it’s designed to achieve your desired outcome.

We would like people reading our mini-brochure to ask questions if they are uncertain about anything. We would like them to feel good about the company. But mostly we want them to book onto a training course – and that is where we are focusing the call to action.

What are the key messages you want to get across?

This can get messy with too many messages diluting the focus. The messages need to be closely aligned to what you perceive as the needs and aspirations of the audience.

In the case of my training brochures, what would convince our specific audience to choose our company rather than another in a highly competitive marketplace? We might want to mention quality, cost, expertise, experience, flexibility, delivery options – there’s a long list. But which of these are most likely to convert interest to sales?

What are the limitations?

This is mostly practical, but it’s important to know the guidelines.

Are there word counts that can’t be breached? Is there content that must be included for each document, such as agreed descriptions of products or services? Are there graphics that will lead or complement the text?

Is there a  brand style that’s been agreed for marketing communications? There should be! With my mini-brochures we’re continuing with the style from the website, even down to not using the shorthand of ‘we’re’ but always using ‘we are’.

What are supporting documents being supplied?

Ask for any information that could help, and accept most that is offered. It may well provide not just background, but some nuggets of thinking that you haven’t heard in your conversations.

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