Donovan Group Insights

This Could’ve (Should’ve) Been an Email

Think back to the last message you sent to stakeholders. Maybe it was a highly-produced video or a well-designed infographic. Now, reflect on how much time it took to make. Those mediums tend to be a bit more involved than others. If the message was supposed to be timely, it probably would’ve been more efficient to send an email instead.

District leaders often overlook how effective simple emails can be. You don’t always have to package your message into a lengthy report or fancy brochure. Odds are, the message could’ve been easily summed up in an email. If you need to say something important, sed an email can keep it short and clear.

Communication shouldn’t be complicated

A comprehensive communications plan incorporates various mediums. Videos, blog posts and print materials all have a place in your communications plan. However, they’re not applicable in every situation. One drawback to these mediums is that they take a lot of time to produce—time that you might not have.

Not all messages need a high production value. Sometimes, you just need to get the facts out as quickly and efficiently as possible. Email is a great way to achieve that. Other mediums can take too long to draft, produce, edit and post. And if your message is urgent, you don’t want to wait around for a media interview, either. Don’t overcomplicate things—write down your thoughts, look them over and hit send.

Keep it short and sweet (and timely, too)

When you send an email, you want stakeholders to actually read it. Engage stakeholders by keeping the email short, sweet and to the point. Try to avoid getting bogged down by too many details. Focus on your main takeaways and the most crucial pieces of information. As a general rule of thumb, the shorter your email is, the better.

The email has to be very clear, too. Write your message in a way that’s easy for stakeholders to understand. As you’re writing the email, ask yourself these questions: “Who is my audience? How much do they know about the topic? What language should I use to get my point across?” The answers will help translate your thoughts into words.

The medium you choose is just as important as the message itself. A simple email might be all you need to get your message out there. There’s a time and place for pamphlets, infographics, videos and news releases. But when you need to communicate quickly and succinctly, email is the way to go.

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