How Are You Telling Your Story?
Good things are happening in your district. Stakeholders deserve to hear all about it! You have a story—now you just have to put it out into the community. However, telling your district’s story involves a bit more than creating an email, parent letter or video. A district needs multiple channels of communication, and the channels it chooses depend entirely on the stakeholders.
Take stock of current communication efforts
District leaders need a high-level overview of how various stakeholders receive the district’s story. Identify all the channels your district uses, whether it’s email, social media, parent letters, websites or all of the above. Note how often you use those channels and which ones are the most popular among stakeholders.
When you see the big picture, you’ll start to notice weak points in the district’s communication efforts. Maybe your district posts all the time on its website, but not enough on social media. Tapping into new channels helps you share the district’s story with more stakeholder groups.
Identify different ways to engage stakeholders
After assessing your communication efforts, think about how you can take a more comprehensive approach to telling the district’s story. It’s important to communicate through multiple channels because different groups consume information in different ways. If you only use one channel, you only reach a tiny fraction of your entire audience.
For instance, many parents like to receive updates via email. However, a printed letter might work best for families who don’t have reliable internet access at home. Some community members might get all their district news from Facebook, while others check the district’s website. Get to know your stakeholders and which channels they like to use the most.
Establish a district-wide content calendar
You’ve probably heard this already, but it’s worth saying again: consistency is key. Your school district has to remain in constant communication with all its various stakeholder groups. You can’t flip between posting once a day and once a month! Consistent content creation boosts the district’s credibility and helps stakeholders feel like they’re in the loop.
Become consistent with your communication efforts by establishing a monthly content calendar for your school district. Plan out how frequently the district will post on each of its channels. Identify which stakeholders use each channel, and create content based on the types of messages they want to receive.
Telling a story is one thing, but it’s how you tell a story that makes all the difference. Remember that a channel might appeal to one group more than another. Creating content on a wide range of communication channels will help you reach the most people with your district’s story.