Digital Communications

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Last week, Blend Interactive coordinated and hosted their first NowWhat2013 conference held in Sioux Falls. This one-day conference was designed to help anyone who works with a website or any other online communications tool answer the question, “How do we keep content useful, fresh and inviting?” and was central to digital communications professionals.

Above you will see a word graph/collage which visually sums up what digital communications means to me and my job at BIT. Please understand that this is not the end all, be all word collage that defines what I do or the profession of other digital communicators, strategists or marketers, but these are aspects of my daily work and I know others in this profession can certainly relate to it.

Key takeaways from the NowWhat2013 conference are listed below (in no particular order). The list can be described as the "new rules or routines" because we all know the rules are changing and it is time to break the old ones...if you haven't already done so!
  1. Create adaptable messages by developing a consistent voice and allow for transparency. Then stay true to your voice.

  2. Invite social participation. Be open. Listen to your customers or audiences.

  3. Don't change for the sake of change, but adapt and figure out what works best for you and your business needs. Adaptability is the new competitive advantage.

  4. Think about people strategy. Person to person content. Develop rich content based on a conversation with a human being; incorporating respect and reciprocation. Speak WITH...not TO your customers.

  5. Make effective decisions when it comes to providing valuable and trustworthy content. Digital communicators, strategists and marketers are in a position where trust is essential. Be confident in your decisions and what you are delivering online. Be trusted.

  6. Invest in advocacy. Tell your story! Tell the story of your business!

  7. Publish in one place, promote in many = PR 101.

  8. Encourage innovation. Make content better with other staff input. Nobody's smarter than everybody.

  9. Talk about the bad and address it rather than staying quiet. Make mistakes. We are all human, in and out of the digital world.

  10. Be mindful of your IT guys, they have a job to do too and with good reason. They diligently secure and maintain the technology infrastructure and have standards and policies for helping us stay safe in cyber space.

  11. Use stewardship to pull you out of the chaos.

  12. Take a stand. Make digital happen.
Ultimately, defining digital communications comes down to what works for you, your business needs, your leadership and staff and last but not least, your customers. Do you have other ideas that were missed or that could be added to this list? Please share them!

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