Two-Step Your Communication

Ever use someone else to get your message out?

For example, big, multi-location companies sometimes make important announcements through local plant or office managers, rather than at head office. Another example: advocacy groups that ask their members to individually write or call politicians.

Both examples illustrate what's called a two-step communication strategy - getting extra mileage out of communication by selectively using other people to pass on messages.

It's so common we often don't think of it as a distinct strategy. But, it is, and offers many benefits, including: borrowed legitimacy, extended networks, speedy distribution, and unofficial status. Let's review those benefits in more detail, and as we do so, ask yourself how you could apply them.

Borrowed legitimacy: The example of the advocacy group illustrates how you can use third parties (in this case individual voters/members) to give greater credence to a message.

It also explains the testimonials you see and hear in advertising. And, book publishers commonly use several forms of two-step communication, including testimonials, prefaces by well-known or well-respected persons, and book reviews.

In your workplace, some people probably have more influence than others. If you send out a message to the people with influence and ask them to pass it on to others in the organization, the message may carry more weight.

If you're a sales person, you know the value of referrals. Again, this applies the two-step process to borrow legitimacy.

Extended networks: The two-step process can extend personal reach. It's like an old-boys' network that allows us to greatly expand the number of people we 'know'.

Some publishers of free electronic newsletters ask subscribers to pass on copies to friends and colleagues. It's a way for publishers to reach potential subscribers, with an implied or explicit endorsement.

Speed of distribution: Some messages can't be sent out in mass, they need to be delivered individually and personally, but still need to go out quickly. The two-step process can do that.

For example, some associations use phoning trees. Simply sending written notices of meetings may not be enough to get a good turnout. So, one person phones three other members, and those members each phone three other members and so on. If everyone cooperates, phone trees are very effective (in my experience, though, 'if' is the key word here).

Unofficial status: Sometimes, organizations use what politicians call trial balloons, which is to say, they want reaction to an initiative before officially announcing it.

For example, a politician might test the feasibility of an idea by leaking it to the media. If a news story refers to 'unnamed sources,' you may be seeing the two-step strategy at work. It allows the politician to get a reading on the public's mood without making a commitment.

In summary, the two-step process refers to the idea of using third parties to pass on important messages. Conscious, creative use of the process can extend your reach and give your message more impact. That makes it a useful addition to your communication toolbox.

Robert F. Abbott writes and publishes Abbott's Communication Letter. Learn how you can use communication to help achieve your goals, by reading articles or subscribing to this ad-supported newsletter. An excellent resource for leaders and managers, at: http://www.communication-newsletter.com

In The News:


Forbes

8 Secrets From Power Networking Pros
Forbes
When done skillfully, networking can not only open the door to plum job opportunities but it can also help land new clients and tap talent for future hiring. And what better way to learn the ins and outs of such skillful networking than to go straight ...


17 Tips To Survive Your Next Networking Event
Forbes
While this might sound like your experience at a middle school dance, it's also what many people feel when they enter a networking event. These are completely natural reactions, even for the biggest extroverts. The great news is that people go to these ...


Women's summit in Melbourne promises top speakers, networking opportunities
Florida Today
"With speakers talking about essential topics for business success, this is an ideal event for purposeful networking for top-level executives, small-medium sized business owners and other business professionals from across Central Florida," said Women ...

and more »

Entrepreneur

Navigate International Networking With These 4 Anchors
Entrepreneur
Contrary to what people sometimes assume, not everyone across the world networks the same way. As a result, trying to build overseas relationships can often feel like sailing across the Pacific with a blindfold -- regardless of whether you're a first ...

and more »

Get Paid for Posts? Social Networking's New Twist
ABC News
"I just feel like everyone on social networks has been taken advantage of for long enough," says Michael Nusbaum, a New Jersey surgeon who created Bonzo Me. "Facebook has been making a ton of money, and the people providing the content aren't ...

and more »

Women's networking event Saturday, McDonald Partners named to top list: Local ...
The Plain Dealer
CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Stiletto Boss will host another part of its Summer Sundress Series in Bedford Heights. EmpoweringSHE: Women's Forum and Networking Event will be from 4-8 p.m. Saturday at Elementz Lounge, 474 Northfield Road. According to a ...


Regional business networking event nears
The Coloradoan
Northern Colorado chambers of commerce in Fort Collins, Berthoud, Greeley, Loveland and Windsor, along with Clear Channel Media and Entertainment and Thunder Mountain Harley-Davidson, will host an outdoor Business After Hours networking event ...


​Why networking is replacing cold calling (and why it's more than the numbers)
L.A. Biz
I opened two different yet similar emails this morning. The first dealt with a “Speed Networking” site promoting its services. The second email was promoting a “Networking Seminar” that uses a formulaic approach to networking similar to the typical ...

and more »

More Than Lunch business networking event in Mountain Lakes to be held on ...
NorthJersey.com
The Morris County Chamber of Commerce is holding its summer More Than Lunch networking event Thursday, July 24, at The Villa in Mountain Lakes, from 11:45 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The event is open to Chamber members and non-members alike. Attendees ...
Business news: Morris chamber to hold networking eventDailyrecord.com

all 2 news articles »

4 Tips For Networking To Change Fields
Forbes
Your career-switch networking strategy should start with creating a well-thought-out 30-second pitch about you. So you'll want to develop a brief statement that summarizes what you want to do and includes an explanation of your skillset. In this ...

Google News

Growing Your Network of People Can be Easy and Fun!

A few years back when I moved to Charlotte, NC... Read More

Mary Kay Ash Did It Best... (The Networking Factor)

"The Networking Factor, Everyone is important!" This slogan reminds me... Read More

Putting The Fun Back In Networking

Networking is one of the most important skills a person... Read More

How to be Known

Why business relationships are formed with certain people?If you go... Read More

Savvy Networking: Grow Your Business and Your Career

Did you know that contacts are the bread of career... Read More

3 Reasons to Join a Group

Defining your purpose for joining a group.When you make the... Read More

Test Your Networking Know-How

Let's test your knowledge on networking:1)The best definition of networking... Read More

The Foundation of Networking: Its Not Rocket Science

Commandment 1LoveWhen we choose to simply love, our giving and... Read More

10 Terrific Tips to Talk Your Way to the Top

What is "the top" anyway? According to society, "top" has... Read More

Networking: What the Heck is a Ryze?

If you're new to the internet marketing club, you may... Read More

How to Get More Visibility, Increase Your Influence, and Get More Referrals

Earlier today I was helping a client develop a better... Read More

A Vital Habit For Selling Big Ticket Items

I hope the title of this article aroused your curiosity!... Read More

How Well Do Your Customers Know You?

Know your customer, know your customer, know your customer. Three... Read More

Create a 10 Second Introduction From Your USP

You can generate a ton of business by networking, whether... Read More

Discover Your Own Source Of Business Leads

Generating new business leads is critical in your success, no... Read More

Networking

Put join a networking group on your to do list... Read More

Lesson 69 - When Networking Events Fail

The StoryIn a quest to create strategic alliances, coalitions, and... Read More

5 Ways to Wow People Who Wear Nametags

People wear nametags more often than you think. The majority... Read More

Increasing the ROI on Your Networking

Networking requires an investment of time, money and effort. Here... Read More

The Secrets of Effective Networking

Before we talk about specific networking tips I want to... Read More

Online Business Networking: How Personal is Too Personal?

Online networking has opened up some fantastic business opportunities for... Read More

Where to Find a Cash Windfall of $10,000 - $1,000,000 - You Never Knew You Had

There is a rather famous true story called "Acres of... Read More

Plan for the Event or Flounder

Rather than being there to eat the food and drink... Read More

The A-B-Cs of Networking

In the workplace - and when dealing with workplace matters... Read More

Your Front End

While surfing for traffic or browsing your safelist emails, you... Read More