How Big is the Gap between You and Your Audiences?

How Big is the Gap between You and Your AudiencesMy husband is in the business of professional development for financial advisors. And every once in a while — in fact more often than you’d think — he brings up an issue he’s thinking on that’s incredibly relevant to nonprofit communicators.

Today’s issue is — the GAP. Knowledg@Wharton, a great, free e-news on knowledge management, last week reported on survey results from financial advisors and their clients. What’s relevant to your nonprofit is that advisors and their clients have such different perspectives on what’s important, and that gap is preventing satisfaction on both sides.

Advisors pinpointed personal factors like shared schools or church as being of major importance to clients, while clients valued an advisor’s knowledge above all else; advisors identified responsiveness as a key factor, while clients expect responsiveness and take it as a given.
As a result, many advisors are trying to find new clients, and retain current ones, using all the wrong reasons.

So nonprofit communicators, what does your gap look like? Without ongoing audience research, your programs and services, and the messages you use to recruit and maintain donors, volunteers, participants and even staff members, are bound to be off base. As an old friend used to say, assumptions make an a__ out of you and me.

Ways to close the gap can be cheap and accessible, although some effort is a must. One of my favorites is the communications advisory board. You’ll find several additional ways to close the gap here.

Mind the gap!

Photo Credit: CatchesTheLight

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Nancy Schwartz on May 29, 2007 in Audience Research, Branding and Messages, Nonprofit Communications, Strategy | 0 comments
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