Trigger 5 (Message and communication plan/campaign)

How to create a communication plan/campaign globally?

  1. What are communication planning process?

  2. How to construct a unified global campaign?

  3. How to translate a message to a global audience?


So here is my research on this matter:

1. What are communication planning process?


  1. Communication is the process of transmitting ideas and information. For a grass roots initiative or community based organization, which means conveying the true nature of your organization, the issues it deals with, and its accomplishments to the community.
  2. Communication can take many forms, including:
    • Word of mouth
    • News storiesin both print and broadcast media
    • Press releases and press conferences
    • Posters, brochures, and fliers
    • Outreach and presentations to other health and community service providers and to community groups and organizations
    • Special events and open houses that your organization holds

    To communicate effectively, it helps to plan out what you want from your communication, and what you need to do to get it.


    1. Identify the purpose of your communication
    2. Identify your audience
    3. Plan and design your message
    4. Consider your resources
    5. Plan for obstacles and emergencies
    6. Strategize how you’ll connect with the media and others who can help you spread your message
    7. Create an action plan
    8. Decide how you’ll evaluate your plan and adjust it, based on the results of carrying it out

    What you might want to say depends on what you’re trying to accomplish with your communication strategy. You might be concerned with one or a combination of the following:

    • Becoming known, or better known, in the community
    • Educating the public about the issue your organization addresses
    • Announcing events
    • Celebrating honors or victories
    • Raising money to fund your work
    • Countering the arguments, mistakes etc.
    • Dealing with an organizational crisis that’s public knowledge – a staff member who

    Who are you trying to reach?

    You can group people according to a number of characteristics:

    • Demographics. Demographics are simply basic statistical information about people, such as gender, age, ethnic and racial background, income, etc.
    • Geography. You might want to focus on a whole town or region, on one or more neighborhoods, or on people who live near a particular geographic or man-made feature.
    • Employment. You may be interested in people in a particular line of work, or in people who are unemployed.
    • Health. Your concern might be with people at risk for or experiencing a particular condition – high blood pressure, perhaps, or diabetes – or you might be leveling a health promotion effort – “Eat healthy, exercise regularly” – at the whole community.
    • Behavior. You may be targeting your message to smokers, for example, or to youth engaged in violence.

    Another aspect of the audience to consider is whether you should direct your communication to those whose behavior, knowledge, or condition you hope to affect, or whether your communication needs to be indirect. Sometimes, in order to influence a population, you have to aim your message at those to whom they listen – clergy, community leaders, politicians, etc.

    For instance, in the 1970’s, advocates wanted to stop Nestle from selling baby formula and paying doctors and nurses to recommend it to parents in the developing world; since most parents couldn’t afford formula after the free samples ran out, and many didn’t have clean water to mix it with, the practice led to large numbers of unnecessary infant deaths. Rather than target Nestle or the medical professionals who were selling the formula, advocates aimed at Nestle’s customers around the world, instituting a boycott of Nestle products that lasted for over ten years. Ultimately, the company agreed to change its practices.


    When creating your message, consider content, mood, language, and design.


    In the course of a national adult literacy campaign in the 1980’s, educators learned that TV ads that profiled proud, excited, successful adult learners attracted new learners to literacy programs. Ads that described the difficulties of adults with poor reading, writing, and math skills attracted potential volunteers. Both ads were meant to make the same points – the importance of basic skills and the need for literacy efforts – but they spoke to different groups.

    You should craft your message with your audience in mind; planning the content of your message is necessary to make it effective.


    Consider what emotions you want to appeal to.

    The mood of your message will do a good deal to determine how people react to it. In general, if the mood is too extreme – too negative, too frightening, trying to make your audience feel too guilty – people won’t pay much attention to it. It may take some experience to learn how to strike the right balance. Keeping your tone positive will usually reach more people than evoking negative feelings such as fear or anger.


    There are two aspects to language here: one is the actual language – English, Spanish, Korean, Arabic – that your intended audience speaks; the other is the kind of language you use – formal or informal, simple or complex, referring to popular figures and ideas or to obscure ones.

    You can address the language people speak by presenting any printed material in both the official language and the language(s) of the population(s) you’re hoping to reach, and by providing translation for spoken or broadcast messages.

    The second language issue is more complicated. If your message is too informal, your audience might feel you’re talking down to them, or, worse, that you’re making an insincere attempt to get close to them by communicating in a way that’s clearly not normal for you.  If your message is too formal, your audience might feel you’re not really talking to them at all. You should use plain, straightforward language that expresses what you want to say simply and clearly.

    Channels of communication

    What does your intended audience read, listen to, watch, engage in?  You have to reach them by placing your message where they’ll see it.

    • Posters
    • Fliers and brochures – These can be more compelling in places where the issue is already in people’s minds (doctors’ offices for health issues, supermarkets for nutrition, etc.).
    • Newsletters
    • Promotional materials – Items such as caps, T-shirts, and mugs can serve as effective channels for your message.
    • Comic books or other reading material – Reading matter that is intrinsically interesting to the target audience can be used to deliver a message through a story that readers are eager to follow, or simply through the compelling nature of the medium and its design.
    • Internet sites – In addition to your organization’s website, interactive sites like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube are effective mediums for communication
    • Presentations or presence at local events and local and national conferences, fairs, and other gatherings
    • Community or national events
    • Word of mouth
    • Music
    • Exhibits and public art
    • Movies
    • TV
    • Theater and interactive theater

    Your plan should include careful determinations of how much you can spend and how much staff and volunteer time it’s reasonable to use.


    Any number of things can happen in the course of a communication effort. It’s important to try to anticipate all kinds of problems, and to create a plan to deal with them. Crisis planning should be part of any communication plan, so you’ll know exactly what to do when a problem or crisis occurs. Crisis plans should include who takes responsibility for what – dealing with the media, correcting errors, deciding when something has to be redone rather than fixed, etc. It should cover as many situations, and as many aspects of each situation, as possible.


    Establishing relationships with individual media representatives and media outlets is an important part of a communication plan, as is establishing relationships with influential individuals and institutions in the community and/or the population you’re trying to reach. You have to make personal contacts, give the media and others reasons to want to help you, and follow through over time to sustain those relationships in order to keep communication channels open.


    Now the task is to put it all together into a plan that you can act on. By the time you reach this point, your plan will already be essentially done. Now it’s just a matter of putting the details together – actually composing and designing your message (perhaps more than one, in order to use lots of channels), making contact with the people who can help you get your message out, and getting everything in place to start your communication effort.


    If you evaluate your communication plan in terms of both how well you carry it out and how well it works, you’ll be able to make changes to improve it. It will keep getting more effective each time you implement it. (Source)

    2. How to construct a unified global campaign?

The key to a powerful global marketing campaign actually lies in personalization. It is crucial to target your messaging—headlines, copy, taglines, images, color schemes and more—to your audience’s cultural preferences.

  1. Not so much global as local and customized

    Because cultures, languages and advertising laws differ so greatly from one country to the next, applying a single global marketing campaign worldwide would never be effective. Instead, marketers must customize the campaign for each country. They should aim to make at least one facet of the campaign noticeably catered to the location.

    When media allows, such as with email marketing, the message should be catered to each individual user or to specific user groups. Personalization is often an effective strategy.

    –Simon Slade, co-founder and CEO of Doubledot Media Limited

    Target your campaign to a specific market

    Be sensitive to political, cultural and social norms for different countries and the appropriate use of images, words and scenarios. Many cultures associate certain colors with luck or with death, for example. Pay close attention to the use of genders and gender roles, especially in areas that may have strict rules on the showing of faces.

    Using celebrities or spokespeople in global marketing campaigns requires an understanding of how the individual(s) will be perceived in the local geography. Celebrities in the United States may or may not be known in other countries (or they may not be known for the same thing or perceived in the same way).

    Every language, culture and country has a unique take on humor. Be very careful when trying to be funny because it may backfire. Plan on involving locals and native speakers in campaign development and assessment throughout.

    Ensure that images, words and scenarios are plausible for the target geography/country. Think about things like the weather, the climate, the terrain and the type of cities and towns for that area. For example, don’t talk about football in Europe or Asia when you really are referring to soccer.

    — Norman Guadagno, senior VP of marketing strategy at Wire Stone

    The right research and resources

    The research prior to a campaign launch is crucial. Even if you have laser targeting, if the message doesn’t resonate with locals in an international market, the campaign can do your brand more harm than good. Make sure to invest the necessary resources in research prior to the campaign launch.

    — Jason Parks, owner of The Media Captain

    Planning for the next step: Seeking guidance

    For professional guidance with your global marketing efforts, consider partnering with a language services company specializing in global marketing. They can help you create an overarching strategy, adapt your messaging for each target market and even help with measuring tactics to gauge your campaigns’ effectiveness in each locale. (Source)


    More people than ever today expect personalization. That means communicating with your audience members in a way that tells them you understand who they are and what they want, by localizing according to some very important elements:

    • Geographic location
      •Language and regional dialects
      •Expressions and slang
      •Visual layout and color schemes
      •Images, video and audio
      •Popular culture references and local events
      •Social customs, traditions and taboos
      •Platforms on which content is shared . . . etc.

    Locally adapting your global marketing campaign entails many different aspects, from the campaign content itself to how it’s ultimately shared with locals. A certain approach involving just one of the above components could delight people of one culture but seriously offend those of another.

    Global and local = “glocal”

    The importance of local flavor

    Some companies try to design a global marketing campaign to be as broadly appealing as possible, with a goal of requiring less localization. If you’re in this position, you might find that expediently pushing out content is your number one priority.

    That’s fine, but you’ll still need to consider each target country’s expectations. After all, a failed global marketing effort due to inadequate localization can color an entire country’s perception of a company brand.

    Recommendation 1: Clarify what is driven globally and what is managed locally

    A global marketing approach does not mean the absence of local, market-specific plans and initiatives. These should, in fact, be complementary.

    Some areas of marketing that lend themselves to being led at a global or central level include branding and brand guidelines, strategic marketing planning and budgeting, large-scale marketing campaigns, social media strategy and guidelines, research strategy, and global PR.

    Other areas best managed locally include local outreach initiatives and more tactical campaigns, local social media channels and PR initiatives, local partnerships and events, etc.  Markets need to have some control over the local channels that contribute to driving their success.

    Recommendation 2: Understand local market needs and develop a collaborative approach

    Too often, operating globally is seen as an excuse to avoid spending time understanding local cultures, customer needs and behaviours, as well as successful and less successful marketing approaches.

    And yet, it is obvious that a US-based customer is likely to be very different from a customer located in India or SEA. Their lives, cultures, and needs are different, so it makes sense they will interact very differently with your products or services.

    For a global model to work, global teams need to develop an understanding of local markets and establish a close relationship with local marketing teams.

    Recommendation 3: Develop and socialise a global marketing plan early (seek feedback)

    So, you have established key relationships, researched local markets, and defined global marketing plans which you think accommodate local needs where required.

    That’s a great start, but don’t wait for the campaign to begin to validate your assumptions. Socialise these plans with your international teams as soon as possible, seek their feedback and ensure that there are no legal issues to prevent your plans from working in certain markets.

    A proactive approach will give you time to adjust and revise your plans in the event of a problem. It will also allow you to get buy-in from your local colleagues.  And, after all, a huge part of the success will rest on their shoulders during execution.

    Recommendation 4: Manage campaigns like an army operation – plan ruthlessly

    As the time for your campaign to kick-off approaches, there are a few key elements to consider to help it succeed; starting with outstanding project planning.

    • Appoint a global campaign manager
    • Plan ruthlessly
    • Consider time-zones
    • Communicate

    Recommendation 5: Make sure you track and adjust in real time

    Running a campaign in multiple markets means you will have to be particularly disciplined about tracking results.  The campaign manager is a good person to coordinate this.

    Here are a few suggestions:

    • Define key metrics and goals
    •  Get buy-in from in-market teams
    • Keep a centralised shared template
    • Review metrics weekly with the team

    Recommendation 6: Consolidate and share insight

    Once your campaign comes to an end, make sure you consolidate the insight gained and organise a debrief.

    It is important results are both shared upward and reviewed with in-market teams. Discuss what worked, what didn’t; which markets the campaign was most successful in and why.  Learnings will be invaluable in planning future activity.

    Recommendation 7: Over-communicate

    Effective communication is important at all times, not only when running campaigns.

    A critical element that makes global marketing work is the relationship you establish with in-market teams.

    Reap the benefits of operating globally

    Yes, global marketing requires some effort to work, but it does have a number of benefits.

    Most obviously, it ensures your marketing strategy is applied consistently (but smartly) across territories and it allows you to operate more efficiently through economies of scale.

    Beyond this, one of the biggest benefits of operating globally with a local presence is the opportunity it provides to develop a deeper understanding of the markets in which your company operates and their potential. It enables you to prioritise and optimise your efforts and budgets effectively.

    And last but not least, it gives you as many territories to test and learn from. For each campaign or activity you run, you will gather feedback and suggestions from a range of markets. This is invaluable insight you can leverage by developing a repository of best practice and ideas which will help drive your long term success. (Source)

    3. How to translate a message to a global audience?

What are some of the things organizations should keep in mind when trying to communicate to a global audience via social media?

  1. Communicating globally requires more than just accurate translations into multiple languages. It’s about making sure your message is received by people who don’t share your customs and traditions, and that requires a certain level of cultural understanding beyond language proficiency.

    In fact, the terms that have become common in the language services industry to describe what we do are “translation and localization”—underscoring the fact that translation is really only half of it.

    A line that may be clever in English—”Dollars and Sense”—loses all meaning in another language where the words for “cents” and “sense” don’t sound the same.

    If you know your content is destined for a global audience—whether translated or not—avoid colloquial expressions at all costs, as well as any potential dates that represent holidays to any members of your target audience. Steer clear of references to sports figures and local folk heroes. Rhymes, jargon, poems, puns and witty sayings mean absolutely nothing when translated into other languages.

    What are some of the common mistakes organizations make when communicating to a global audience?

    Icons, cultural symbols and even colors all have different meanings for different language groups—and have just as much potential to cause miscommunication or worse, irreparable offense.

    Here are a few things to keep in mind:

    • Numbers and dates 
The number 1,107.61 in the United States would be written as 1.107,61 in Latin American Spanish. Likewise, the date written as 6/3/11 is June third in the U.S., but represents the sixth of March in many countries outside the United States.
    • Color 
While red conveys a sense of danger or alarm to North American English speakers, the color represents a sense of happiness or good luck to some other cultural groups.
    • Symbols 
To North American English-speaking audiences, an owl represents wisdom. In Mexico, the owl represents stupidity. Always put symbols through a cultural review process or test them with focus groups before using them in your materials.

    Today, there are a number of free translation tools available over the Internet. What are the potential dangers of using these services? Can you provide any examples of organizations that have run into trouble?

    While there’s certainly a role for technology, true communication can’t happen without a professional, human touch. That’s especially true with content that is particularly idiomatic or that relies on context—whether witty, inspirational or simply aspirational in tone.

    For just a few reasons not to trust free online translation tools in a situation where accuracy matters, here are some examples of translations I’ve come across online:

    • The technician will drink two to three large glasses of dye into the waiting area for 45 to 90 minutes.
    • Bring a responsible adult who can stay with you until you are ready to be downloaded by the physician.
    • The day of the procedure does not eat or drink anything after midnight.

    Can you provide some tips that will help communicators ensure their messages are embraced by a global audience?

    If you’re writing something destined for translation, there are steps you can take when drafting original material to make the translation process more efficient and, therefore, successful.

    The biggest challenge in successful translation is inaccurate, confusing or sub-par writing to begin with. Typos and incorrect punctuation can alter the meaning of a sentence. When writing is ambiguous, the translator has to decipher what the writer is trying to say.

    Another common pitfall: a failure to realize that most other languages use more words than English. Translated material can be 25 to 35 percent longer, which can cause problems and delays when the text has to fit into an already-designed template.

    Also, don’t forget to examine the entire chain of communication. If a Spanish-language brochure sends someone to your English-only website, you’ll lose your audience. For example, if your brochure translates the phrase “click on the PRINT button” to “haga clic en el botón IMPRIMIR”—but the website button actually is labeled “PRINT”—you will needlessly frustrate consumers and possibly lose them as potential customers in the process. This may seem obvious, but it’s all too common for people to forget how their translations will ultimately be used.

    The bottom line is that as professional communicators we’re always working hard to make sure that we don’t get in the way of our own message. In fact, business communicators are the ones who invest the most time thinking about language and constructing messages with a deliberate purpose. Don’t let the more casual nature of social media fool you into thinking you can let your guard down. (Source)


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