Communications & Marketing Services

Brands that succeed in engaging, converting and retaining customers are very good at ‘Tell, to Sell”. this is driven by a compelling story that resonates with your key audiences. It’s the bedrock of every effective marketing initiative. That’s why we start with the communication aspect. Clients pretty much know who they need to connect with, and the features/qualities of the product/service they’re marketing. Where they need help is in creating an engaging, commercial story that doesn’t feel like a laboured sales pitch.

When your story reflects a clear point of difference and value, marketing is so much easier. Then it’s just a case of deciding which channels are best to engage audiences through, and how capture/activate the response data.

Many clients tells us they don’t have a good story to tell. But we know every brand has a great story, just waiting to get out there.

That’s where we come in.

We get to work on discovering what makes our client’s business valuable in the mind of their ideal clients. We start by identifying the key points of connection between the brand and that customer. And because a story is just words without proof to back it up, we integrate the features of your product or service offering into the mix.

By doing this, your ‘pitch’ represents both the solution and ongoing benefit in choosing your brand (like reliability, service quality, uptime and scalability). This creates the best dynamic for a customer: Confidence in choosing your brand, and trust that they’ve made the right decision.

Having key stakeholders on board is vital to communicating and marketing your brand. Their needs and expectations should be considered. And not just because they have some control over the outcome. Their buy-in and ownership of the outcome helps build a cohesive story to project into the marketplace. To do this, managing the process is part psychology, therapy and interview.

Through our experience dealing with senior leaders, we connect with stakeholders to identify what they think is valuable about the brand. And the more people you engage with, the richer the insights. Then we consolidate all this into a cohesive, story of the brand. that can appeal to all the different audiences your brand needs to engage and convert.

If there’s one internal audience that needs special attention, it’s members of an Association, NFP or Society. They are the lifeblood of these organisations. So you need to truly understand what they want from you, and why they’re chosen you.

And they’re not customers, but people who have a deeper, almost familial connection to your brand. Accordingly this must inform how you connect with them. Our approach elevates the member need, using behavioural insights to craft every outreach the context of what is meaningful and resonant to them.

So we actively engage members, across gender and demographic. We get their view on what the brand means to them, and what they want to get from the connection. That’s because member-based relationships are a two-way interaction. When you do this, you’ll create stronger, shared experiences that enhance brand and member alike.

Let’s face it: nobody likes change.

Change is based on a shifting need, or circumstance. Which means moving from an existing (maybe comfortable) dynamic. It implies that what’s been occurring isn’t up to scratch. It takes people into a new space, one that they may not know, like, or accept.

Talk about a communications challenge.

To best communicate change you need to engage different people in different ways. And tell a consistent story, because uncertainty breeds fear (in the absence of information, people with catastrophise).

We create a detailed communications plan based on what the change entails, and who will be impacted. Then we create clear, honest and information-based messaging structure in the context of the organisational challenge. Next we create specific messaging for those affected, across every area of the organisation. Personalising the communication and accepting that tough conversations will heighten emotions is what drives the tone and order of engagement.

In our experience, information, options and honesty are the key elements to successfully manage change.

HCF Customer Journey Map

We have a simple premise for creating engaging and valuable comms: Map every touchpoint in the journey the customer has with the brand. To build an meaningful, enduring customer relationship, look at every moment of interaction. We mean every one, not just the usual ones (typically acquisition, transaction, complaint and win-back). This is because brands can disregard touchpoints they don’t consider valuable, but a customer will mark you (up, or down) on.

Show a customer that no matter how small the touchpoint, the brand is thinking of you, and the better they’ll feels about you.

When you map the customer’s journey, it creates a landscape to work in. It also highlights areas to simply and effectively improve the experience. Then connect this with feedback mechanisms, staff training and specific comms to create integrated, cohesive customer engagement. This can lead to new service offerings, and importantly, increased customer loyalty and advocacy.