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Looking to give your customers an excellent and consistent experience of your brand? One of the simplest and most effective places to start is with good Communication Design.
This is the approach that saw one of our client’s pave the way for a company-wide shift to a CX focussed strategy.
Communication Design has also been shown to improve acquisition and retention, cost-to-serve, employee satisfaction, brand reputation and advocacy.
Simply put, Communications Design is the activity of orchestrating WHAT a company says and HOW they say it (structure, tone and format) across every single touch point of your customer journey, including:
- Website design
- Forms and applications
- Verbal conversations (eg. support line or contact centre)
- Letters and emails
- Guides and other support material
- Live chat or chat bots
- Voice interfaces
Like any relationship, how well you communicate is make or break, so we’ve put together 6 steps to help you design communications to delight your customers.
1. Know your audience and be empathetic
Take the time to understand your customer personas and their jobs to be done. Look at current communications - understand purpose and where the customer pain points are. Where is it difficult for your customers to understand? Speak with them. Ask them why!
2. Build a foundation for consistency
Do you have guiding principles and a style guide to inform the way you communicate and create consistency across your organisation? This should be leading practice and be founded in what is relevant to your customers. Starting with your company values, or finding out what attributes are most important to your customers is a good start point, but you should aim to make your guiding principles separate and unique to communications. These principles will sit across all communication touch points but can become more tailored and specific as you delve into different channels.
3. Design the communications
Put pen to paper. You already understand your audience, and you have a set of principles to make sure you deliver consistency, it’s now time to design your communications. What do they look like? What do they feel like? What channels are appropriate for what you are trying to communicate? And critically, how do your principles translate into your ‘voice’? How do you ensure you stay true to your values in every conversation?
4. Test with customers, pilot and refine
No one gets it right the first time, therefore obtaining feedback from your customers is essential. Take the time to pilot, test, and refine, before rolling out.
You’ve tried, you’ve tested, and it’s time to embed. Build your communications and you will start to see results.
6. Create a consistent tone of voice across channels, and scale and measure
Your communications need to be maintained, and will regress if you don’t look after them. You need to build the capability in your team, and measure continuously.
Get communications with your customers right and you can deliver a better experience whilst building an emotional bond with your customers. With your communications right, you will see immediate better customer outcomes and business benefits.
Service Design & Research
Understanding and designing for customers