4 tips to becoming a better communicator

Insight from Word Made Digital's Joanna la Fleur
  • By: Compassion Canada
A young woman teaching a class of young children.

We invited our friend Joanna la Fleur to share her expertise on our blog about communicating well in the digital age.  We’re fans of her podcast Word Made Digital which we’re sponsoring this year. On the podcast, Joanna talks with Christian creatives who are making an unique impact in the world.

Here’s 4 great tips from Joanna for the Christian Creative seeking to be effective in how they communicate, whether it’s for a church, on the job, on a personal blog, on social media (and anywhere in between):

A group of four children sit in a canoe with their backpacks, on their way to school.

Compassion sponsored children on their way to school in the Ecuadorian Amazon

1. Share stories

Stories are a currency that can be used to gain trust with your audience. These stories don’t need to be elaborate.  Good ways to tell stories about impact of giving and the work of the ministry through short paragraphs in:

monthly emails

church bulletins

announcements

 

Justin, in El Salvador, proudly shows off a stack of letters from his sponsor.

Justin, in El Salvador, proudly shows off a stack of letters from his sponsor.

2. Be consistent

By the time you’re getting sick of talking about an initiative that is really important to your mission and values, your audience is only just beginning to understand it.  Say it, say it everywhere, and then say it a few more times.

A child painting.

Hector, an award-winning painter, is a Compassion sponsored child in Mexico

3. Use visuals

People remember visuals because they connect with the emotional centres of our brain.  As often as possible, have imagery of the subject you’re talking about integrated with your communication plan. This is not to manipulate or objectify, but rather to help people understand that there are real people and families affected by our action or inaction.

If you work in child development, share the human story of how the child is transformed.

Examples: Esther is able to go to this school. Charles drinks from this clean well.

Abdoul lays on the floor of his home, working on homework.

Abdoul dreams of becoming a doctor in Burkina Faso

4. Get personal 

If it doesn’t matter to you personally, it won’t matter to many people in your audience. Connect with people by telling them why this matters to you, and how you have been personally moved to act.

If you have to choose, go for connection over content. 

Becoming a better communicator of good news takes practice, but it can be learned! 

Word Made Digital's Joanna la Fleur joins Compassion Canada's blog to share why Christians should be the best communicators with tips on how to reach your audience with compassion and effectiveness.

For more tips and tools to communicate more effectively in the Digital Age, visit Joanna’s website or check out the Word Made Digital podcast. 


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Note: This post was adapted from Joanna’s guest post Communicating Compassion in a Digital World