National EMSC Data Analysis Resource Center
Most often, you will need to choose more than one method to effectively reach the majority of the people in your target audience.
Most often, you will need to choose more than one method to effectively reach the majority of the people in your target audience. You will need to choose a combination of methods that will give you the best chance at communicating your message.
Go back to Step 2 and remind yourself of what your audience is like and what their needs are. Some communication methods will naturally emerge from this process.
For instance, if I determine that my target audience is EMS training leadership, I know that they are very busy and probably spend a lot of their time in back-to-back meetings. They probably don’t have a lot of time to go through a full-blown data report. They also may not have a lot of time to go browsing my website. Therefore, here is what I come up with for communicating to my target audience:
My Project Communication Methods:
- Presentation: I will present to them in a meeting they are already attending and try to stimulate discussion with the group.
- Fact sheet: Knowing that they would appreciate brevity in my discussion, I will keep my presentation very short and allow many of the data and details to be displayed on a simple fact sheet handout they can refer to.
- Personal communications: Following the meeting, I know that I will probably need to continue motivating individuals through face-to-face discussions, personal phone calls, and email messages.
- Newsletter: As ongoing reminders, I will also have some articles printed in the weekly EMS newsletter that all of them receive.
Remember, these are the methods for just one group of people in my target audience. I will probably need to come up with different approaches for communicating with parent representatives, federal representatives, media, etc. But this at least helps you understand the process you can go through in choosing an effective communication medium.
It never hurts to ask the audience themselves! Don’t forget you can also consult with these people to find out what they feel are the best methods for communicating with them. It never hurts to ask the audience themselves! It is also a good idea to get feedback from other colleagues to make sure you are heading in the right direction with your communication approach.