Did you know that 75% of people prefer to read articles under 1,000 words? Welcome to the world of microblogging.
Perhaps you are unaware, but you may already be an accomplished microblogger. Here’s some examples to test your familiarity. You may have shared:
- a business or product update on LinkedIn;
- tweeted a topic insight or personal perspective on Twitter;
- or described a fun moment with friends on Instagram.
These small snippets of content classify as microblogging. Twitter has a character limit, which is the big difference between traditional blogging and microblogging. A microblog is ideal to engage an audience with a short, impactful message. Microblogs can include an image, video, sound, or a website link (URL). The latter may host a video, image, or more detailed content that builds on the microblog summary.
In a world where we are all interconnected, content overload is an unwanted reality. Knowing this, we deliver the most salient points that best influence our target audiences. Their attentive time is assumed to be limited, anything longwinded will most often lose their interest. Social media professionals understand this paradigm better than most. When marketing, they know that their content is consumed with other content, there are many competing distractions.
Company microblogging practices
There are some lessons that may prove valuable for internal communications.
For a microblog (may also be referred to as a message), use the right keywords with a distinct purpose:
- A CTA (call to action) must clarify what is expected and by when. Avoid an excessive focus on the “why”. A simple explanation in this regard works best, or just a clear identification of the target to be achieved.
- Informational should emphasise a single topic only. Avoid trying to connect disparate topics in the same message, this can dilute the desired takeaway.
- Statistical should address the most influential assessments with a brief explanation. A typical example is company revenue and profit/loss for a defined period. Nobody needs to be a finance guru to understand the overall company performance, but a detailed Profit & Loss analysis requires too much explaining. Similarly, typical financial performance indicators evaluated by the C-suite and shareholders are not relevant.
- Digital topics must adopt the KISS principle: “keep it simple, stupid”. By example, if there is a cybersecurity issue, focus on the awareness needed: how it occurs and what to do. Use a basic language set and avoid the geeky acronyms. There’s no need to describe the digital mastery behind the risk, or the IT department’s methods to combat the challenge.
- Humanizing requires sincerity, give the company a personality that it cares and notices. For departments, personal events that are worthy of congratulations or condolences builds inclusivity, especially for those who are socially more shy than the social butterflies.
- Recognition requires clarity on what was achieved, by who, and a brief description of why it makes a positive difference for the department or company. Employee recognition is a vital part of retention.
- Alerts such as safety warnings, crime awareness, event notifications, and status changes must be kept as brief and clear as possible. Alerts require a “change in habit or direction” from individuals. Avoid an analysis paralysis such as background information or over describing the outcomes if the alert is ignored.
Make it easy to digest for everyone:
- If you are reaching employees of all levels, it’s beneficial to keep your sentences short with an uncomplicated flow.
- Don’t use acronyms or complicated terms that only a few may understand.
- If there are changes to a company policy, simply describe the change. For many, the detail in employment contracts and company policies already feels complicated.
No divisive content:
- As with any other communication, avoid personal opinions on subjects such as politics, religion, race, gender, sexual orientation, nationality, and similar. Diversity should always be embraced and celebrated in the company.
Microblogging is an excellent tool for a company to engage its employees. There are great examples that highlight the benefits. It’s a popular strategy among Startups to build lasting relationships with their users. They can easily fit a microblogging strategy in their marketing plans as it requires very little time to develop micro-content.
Whether a consumer or an employee within a target audience, the instant gratification mindset is the same. As it requires few efforts, a microblogging approach makes it easier for a company to frequently develop valued content for internal communication.