Government Communicators: What Keeps you up at Night?
In last week’s blog we discussed the results of our 2014 Government Communicators Survey, in particular the dramatic shifts occuring in the world of government communicators alongside similar trends in the commercial space. Another interesting angle explored in the survey is what concerns may be keeping communicators up at night. Some of our most interesting findings were around their abilities to measure performance and engage their target audiences.
This infographic highlights our finding that only 44% of non-managers and 66% of managers feel that their communications are reaching and engaging their target audiences. Neither group is overwhelmingly certain, but it begs the question: “who is right?”
In further discussions, we found that some of the disconnect comes from the definition of “engagement.” Engagement is not exposure, but rather the measurement of a constituent’s interaction with your agency’s key message. Engagement is different for each agency and goes beyond a single tactic to focus on overall customer experience across channels. Government communicators need to be able to answer the following questions:
- Do constituents come to your website?
- Did they find and fill out the right form?
- Was it a good experience?
- Will they come back?
After a positive experience, the next step in engagement is to have your constituents amplify your mission by sharing it with others, such as through their social media channels.
But why should government communicators care about being able to measure how much they are engaging with, and not just reaching, their desired audience?
The answer is simple: it is going to save money and it will alleviate other concerns. Engagement requires being where people want you to be—on mobile, social and web. And conveniently, in today’s mobile age, those channels are less expensive and far more accessible to people than your traditional interactions through phone banks and in-person conversation.
Metrics give you focus and tell you if you are helping to accomplish your agency’s mission. These cannot just be any metrics, but specific insights into how people are interacting across multiple channels. Government communicators need to look beyond email open rates, Twitter followers and web analytics, striving to analyze metrics against your agency’s objectives at a macro level. Having the tools and knowing what constitutes meaningful engagement to your agency can reap valuable benefits. Your team can focus on what is effective, validate impacts against the mission and, eventually, reduce those other concerns that keep you up at night.
Be sure to read the next post in this series discussing what the upcoming challenges are for government communicators entitled, “What’s Next in Government Communications?”
For more information on the survey findings, or to learn how Adobe can help your office, contact our team today.