We’re exposed to more information in one day than someone would have been over the course of their entire life in the 15th century. Granted, the medieval mind didn’t exactly have a lot of things to focus on: the plague, tending the crops, the plague, harvesting the crops… you catch the drift.
It’s no wonder we’ve become so selective about what we pay attention to and what we choose to ignore. There’s just way too much information floating around out there. Naturally, this makes it harder to communicate. For one, you’re competing for your residents’ attention. Not only that, but because they’re so overwhelmed with information, they’ve become far more selective about what they’ll engage with.
In other words, you have to get their attention and make yourself relevant—and you only have seconds to do it.
Say more with less
Saying more with less isn’t just about being concise—though that’s definitely part of it. Thankfully, we communicate with one another over a bunch of different channels nowadays, both online and offline. In person, for one. By phone and email. But your residents also live on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and YouTube and Nextdoor and Snapchat and…
Well, you get the point. It’s a long list.
But that’s a good thing. It means more opportunities to connect. It also opens up new ways of communicating. Using all those different channels you have at your disposal, you can deliver bite-sized bits of information to your residents in a bunch of different ways.
For example, since Facebook is video-friendly, use it to post how-to recycling videos or demonstrate the consequences of bad recycling on MRF ops (tanglers, anyone?). Twitter, on the other hand, is great for communicating news and info bytes, like upcoming schedule changes or recycling factoids. Even the way you communicate information on your website matters. Make it discoverable. Make it concise. Make it compelling. Then, rinse and repeat.
A multi-channel approach to communications reduces the attention each of your messages require, ensuring residents get the information they need on a timeline that works for you.
Living multi-channel is about taking advantage of your communications opportunities. All of them. If you’ve identified that residents tossing lithium-ion batteries in their bins is a big problem in your community, craft messaging that frontline staff can relay over the phone or in person. Standardize your bins and bin labels with easy-to-read signage. Build out a social media plan with platform-specific messaging to encourage residents to follow you on all your channels. Use local press to spread the message. Get in touch with us. We’ve got plenty of tools for you to add to your comms arsenal.
Put your site online
Yes, we know: your website is already online. But it’s not communicating as effectively as it could be. Look at it this way: the average public works website contains about 40,000 words—or nearly half a novel (yes, we’ve crunched the numbers). That’s a lot of information, and it usually isn’t organized in a way that’s all that intuitive to your residents. Instead, it’s organized in a way that makes sense to you.
So, make that site more resident friendly! We can hook you up with a search widget for your website that does just that. If you’re thinking about living multi-channel communications, get in touch by clicking the button below. We can talk you through our network and how it works, or chat about some of the other tools out there.
We save people time and energy with intuitive digital tools that make recycling easy. Our goal is to be in every city, on every device, empowering communities to work together to waste less and recycle more. We’re recycling simplified.