PR and communications still have a place in this arena, however, and there are in fact multiple reasons why having an effective comms strategy is particularly important for organisations working in the “third sector”.
Organisations working in the third sector often have incredibly impactful stories to tell – so it’s all the more important for them to get their message across successfully. Resonating with your target audiences means not only identifying who that is and how you reach them, but also evolving your messaging constantly in response to changing priorities and circumstances, and ensuring that any change of approach remains true to the core values of your organisation.
Public sector organisations are often held to account more closely by the media because of their association with the Government or their stated aim of making positive change. Paradoxically, many people working in this sector will be less comfortable in the limelight than their corporate counterparts, so it’s essential that all senior spokespeople are provided with comprehensive media training to help them to achieve the organisation’s aims in every journalist interaction and interview.
Of course, public sector organisations have to face scrutiny from more than just the media, with stakeholders often including members of local or national Government. Managing relations with all interested parties is essential.
At Sapience, for instance, we support one of our third sector clients in its partnership with a County Council, as well as preparing its expert commentators for briefings with parliamentary committees as well as national and trade media.
As a result of the increased spotlight on public sector organisations, the effect of crises can often feel particularly acute. As with any organisation, then, having a proactive crisis communications strategy in place is vital for responding quickly and decisively when the need arises.
How comms can help
At Sapience, not only are we passionate about supporting our charity and public sector clients to make a positive difference, we also understand what makes these organisations unique and how that affects their communications needs.