Here’s a powerful metaphor that you’ll use at least once a week:
“You are talking not to a crowd but a parade.”
Advertisers use the term “frequency of message.” One brilliant full-page, four-color ad won’t do it. Some will miss the ad, others will forget it—and others will not like it.
It takes frequent repetitions to get your key message across. Effective communicators understand that. Great leaders practice it. Thoughtful managers create frequency systems so everyone stays in the loop.
If you announced a new program in your fourth quarter newsletter last year—you’d be shocked how many people didn’t read it, don’t care, or never understood. If your “Vision 21st Century” initiative was launched last year, you may be already using the acronym, “V21C,” this year—and no one knows what the heck you’re talking about!
My good friend and mentor, George Duff, served 27 years as the president of the Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce. This quotation hung on his wall:
“You never get to the point where everybody knows your story, where there is no more criticism. Remember, you are talking not to a crowd but to a parade that is changing all the time. You must communicate with all the marchers—young people are growing up, new people are assuming the burdens of the old, different people are moving into your area, even the same people are changing their thinking.”
Last month’s important email blast has been deleted. People in your parade need new inspiration today, new stories today and new reasons to join your team today.