A quick checklist from my own experience working with various companies and communicating with them via blogs, email and phone and areas I’ve suggested they alter to make their communications a little better.
Name in email
Have a name in it! No firstname.lastname@example.org please, the email address takes care of that. Use a personal name even if it is an info@ email address. What many people like to do is Person Name – Company. It already helps people filter their email before they open it and business people might get preference during an inbox scan.
Have one! Include the company website, the blog and even the Twitter. If you don’t have a legal department, then don’t put in a damned disclaimer. Trust yourself and trust your staff. I’ve seen some companies like Thinkhouse PR that include a “see our latest campaign” or “see our latest blog post” at the bottom of their email signature and I think it works quite well. Consider this but make sure to update the signature on a regular basis with new news.
Use of the BCC field
Get to know the difference between CC fields and BCC fields. Beat it into new staff that with mailing lists the difference between CC and BCC is their job and your reputation.
Data Protection and email harvesting
Don’t sign people up without permission, even if the Data Protection laws here are crap and allow you to spam once and apologise later. People don’t like it. Make sure all mailings are opt-in, not opt-out. Use proper mailing list software to send mail.
Title of website
Company Name – What you do. Don’t just have the title of your homepage (the bit at the very top left of your browser) giving your company name and that’s it. The Title is what Google looks at first and the description there is vital for search engine rankings.
Are you coming first for your company name? If not, you should be unless it is very generic and even then you should be there on Google.ie. Have you registered your name on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook Pages, LinkedIn and other popular and well-ranking websites. Do before someone else does. Ideally you should own the front page of Google results for your company name.
Are your competitors running Google Ads for your name?
Do you have Google Alerts and alerts from other services for your company name, your domain name, your product names and the names of your directors?
Not just “Hello” right? “Hello this is Peter Murphy” or “Peter Murphy here” or “This is Peter”. Answering a call badly can be awkward for both sides and slow a conversation.
State your name, company and request people leave a voicemail. Don’t use the default voicemail service. Personally my voicemail requests people to text me their message or email it to me as I’ll answer them faster that way. It works out very well during long meetings and you have a text record of what people want and a reply address.
Every introduction to someone is a pitch for your company. Can you explain what you do in a sentence, can you explain what your company does in a sentence? Can you do it (really important) in a language that is understood outside your office? can you supply three case studies where your product or service helped someone out? Every staff member is a sales person so should know this.
Do you have a logo? Is it universal on your cards, invoices and on your website? Do you have a Powerpoint template with it in it? Is your logo and company name on your Facebook and Twitter profile?
What do you suggest? Anything to add or even disagree with? What’s worked for you?