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5 Communication Strategies That Are Changing the Industry

Photo credit: Everything Possible/Shutterstock

Photo credit: Everything Possible/Shutterstock

Only 150 years ago Western settlers relied on the Pony Express to relay important missives, dispatching young, eager horseback-riders-turned-messengers across the country. It was dangerous work, to be sure, but a relied-upon practice that ultimately helped join California with eastern states.

Now, we have a bevy of communication methods right at our fingertips: Twitter for quips, Periscope for live-action feeds and phone calls for the really important stuff. The ever-evolving nature of communication means that it’s essential for businesses and professionals to stay abreast of industry practices. Here, five communication strategies that have us excited:

Snapchat // We all knew it wouldn’t be long before media strategists infiltrated Snapchat’s seconds-and-it’s-gone photo app. Publications like ESPN, CNN and Food Network now appear under the ‘stories’ feature as Snapchat Discover. When users tap a publication’s icon, they can toggle through a variety of on-brand stories (think: ‘Five Facts About Jellyfish’ for National Geographic).

User-Generated Content // A brand can only declare its message so many times before it must rely on consumers and users. Nowadays, many companies — including Lilly Pulitzer — are creating clever, easy-to-remember hashtags and encouraging fans of the brand to upload and share images of themselves wearing their favorite pieces, in turn creating a community of brand devotees.

Periscope // With a tagline that readers “explore the world through the eyes of somebody else,” it’s no surprise that this live video streaming app is popping up on Twitter feeds everywhere. The app was created so users can broadcast what’s happening around them in real-time. The viewer can, in turn, comment, ask questions or award hearts (similar to Facebook’s ‘like’ feature). The app’s utility allows companies to create an intimate, live setting while journalists can offer to-the-minute coverage.

Slack // It’s not all about communicating to the outside world. Sometimes, interoffice communication is just as important. And in a day where even e-mail seems slow, Slack, an instant messaging application, allows coworkers to quickly and casually discuss projects, upload materials and create user-friendly group messages.

Phone // Surely this one seems obvious, but hear us out: consider the communication climate of the last five years. Rapid-fire messaging (see above) is ‘in’ and dialogue is out. In fact, all sorts of companies have flourished by ditching the phone entirely (think: GrubHub and Amazon). But for folks in sales or communication-heavy environments, nothing beats a phone call. In a Digiday article, Doug Weaver, CEO of the Upstream Group says “As the business progresses, those who can’t conduct business by phone will fall away.”

And let’s not forget the power of face-to-face discussion. At Villanova University, students pursuing a Master of Arts in Communication can explore all of the above topics and much more in practical and thought-provoking courses ranging from “Public Communication Campaigns” to “Digital Media Design” to “Conflict & Negotiation.” Think you might be interested? What kind of communicator do you want to be? Find more information about Villanova University’s graduate program in communication here.