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We recently completed a project for healthcare company that wanted to communicate with their home healthcare workers about their own benefits. The workforce was geographically diverse and many did not have access computers or smart phones. While print was the obvious choice in this case, it was a bit more complicated because benefits communications are complicated and many of these workers don’t have full command of the English language. Further they come from cultures where insurance isn’t part of their experience and getting them to pay attention would not be a simple task.

We were tasked with coming up with an approach that would penetrate the clutter, attract and hold their interest and encourage them to call for more information or to enroll.  The result was that the company needed additional help to manage the volume of inbound calls.  Why was the response so strong? The answer had to do with several factors: a) We used a series of  post cards to ensure that our message was visible to everyone and consistently reinforced, b) Our communications were short and simple, c) We focused solely on the key issues that they would be concerned with, d)We included a call to action that was simple, e) It was made clear that they would have help enrolling f) It relied on tried and true direct marketing techniques that are used to communicate with consumers, every day.

The more we delve into employee behavior, the more convinced we are that the time has come to recognize that employees are consumers who show up to work and bring their media preferences with them. We have developed a specific approach called ShortBurst™, that incorporates seven key elements into a communications program that results in communications being delivered that are in sync with employee (i.e. consumers) media consumption preferences.  Many companies continue to deliver communications that are out of sync with employee preferences, and then struggle with why over 50% of all internal communications aren’t read.  Perhaps the time has come to rethink your communications model ?


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