24 Mar Communicating your vision – telling your story
INTEGRATED COMMUNICATIONS, A COMMUNICATIONS EVOLUTION
Three years ago, we brought together our passions, divergent worldviews and unique cultural lens, along with our knowledge and research we’d pulled together over 25 years to form The Sisters Consultancy – Integrated Communications. We wanted to use our skills to cyclically connect thinking with doing, and realise a business model that embraces financial, social and creative capital, revenue and profit in a whole-istic way. We were on a mission to bring strategy alive, connect people, business and magic through story.
When we began, we at least knew we wanted to establish a communications practice that weaved internal and external communications, so businesses, organisations and personal brands would thrive through change and adversity, and people’s creative souls had a platform to soar; including our own.
Our knowledge has us straddle internal and external communications using strategy, film, theatre, performance, events, planning, processes, policy, negotiation, the integrated intercultural world around us, research, systems thinking, analysis, branding, marketing, design, corporate, physical movement, business, cultural programmes, publicity, promotions, relationship management, engagement, community, workforce development, writing, creative campaign design and most of all storytelling. All this combined, for us, created the discipline of integrated communications. Perhaps the birth of a new field of communications?
Integrated communications is where strategic communications, the ‘head’, links with the story-teller, the ‘spirit’, then takes into account the people inside and outside the business, the ‘heart’, and lastly it aligns the brand, the ‘body’. It’s an ecosystem. Integrated communications is a way of working and a way of looking at the world. It’s a systems thinking approach that focuses on communications systems bringing more value across the business. It provides a saturated approach across communications throughout the business; inward, outward, inside, outside, top down and bottom up.
As with integrated marketing it, ‘is an approach to creating a unified and seamless experience for consumers to interact with the brand/enterprise’(1), for us, integrated communications offers an evolutionary step up on this idea. We are looking at consumers as the customers and champions that live inside and outside the business.
It is our aim to interact with the longevity and continued inspiration of business, people and brand. By bringing together the engine (team, systems, processes, procedures and channels) and the outer-shell (brand, corporate reputation, promotions, marketing etc) just like a finely tuned vehicle, the value and return on investment in ongoing integrated communications strategy, planning and execution is a must have essential for future-focused business. Having your cake and eating it too.
Where to next?
As I reflect on International Women’s Day March 8, 2019, my mind is full of ideas on pathways for leadership, business and our industry niche. For us it’s about the long game; establishing long-term relationships and putting in place effective and efficient internal and external communications practices. It’s about setting goals and ensuring integrated communications becomes the ‘go to essential’ to have embedded in your business.
Over the next year we hope to share our learnings and failings, our successes and eureka moments in our integrated communications adventure. Where leadership, industry and business meet the ground and take the great glass door elevator up to the next level. When people identify with it, all their senses ignite, and values are at the forefront of making good business great.
Photo Credit: MP Bajwa | Caption: Interviewing whānau