The main beneficiaries of a capitalisation process are the participants of such a process. But many other persons who have not been part of it can also benefit from the lessons that have been drawn. The team in charge of the capitalisation process needs to find a way to reach these other persons, for which it needs to develop a communications plan. This does not have to be a detailed document, as long as it clearly describes the audience you want to reach, and defines the channels you can use to reach this audience in the most effective way.
A communications strategy needs to consider that different people will want to hear different things about your experience, and also that, according to your objectives, you may be interested in sharing a different message in every case. At the same time, you must consider that there are many ways of connecting “senders” and “receivers”: via a radio or TV programme; by letter or e-mail; with an article or booklet, or through the Internet. Having done a thorough audience analysis, the process of selecting the best channel to use starts by identifying the different possible options, and carefully reviewing the objectives of your capitalisation process.
A communication strategy must also consider the number of outputs planned for the year (how many press releases, how many videos?), and a calendar of activities (when should each output be ready?). Just as important, it must acknowledge that preparing a series of documents will not be sufficient if the audience is not aware that these are available. It is therefore necessary to develop promotional strategies to inform your audience that these products are ready, or that they are being distributed, clearly mentioning how to get access to them.
Finally, the team will need to evaluate its communication activities and see if they helped it reach its objectives. More than knowing how many people received a documents or information, they need to discover if these are the persons the team wanted to reach, and if the channels that it chose were the best option. A key step is therefore to ask for feedback.