People Innovation Excellence

Communication Mediums

By: Yunita Wijaya Handranata, B.Eng., M.M.

Ideas are everywhere, a lot of people come up with great ideas but they fail to communicate their product to the market. Hence, it is very important to understand the communication mediums so we can reach our customer effectively.

Communication mediums engage with human five senses. Five core communication elements according to Thomas Vogel including:

1. Storytelling
Storytelling is one of the oldest forms of communication. By storytelling people will receive and memorized information easier. Storytelling combines words, language, sounds, and gestures. Great storytelling often becomes viral and this can be a very effective communication.

Example of a success storytelling communication is the Subway campaign featuring a man named Jared. He can overcome his overweight problem by eating Subway sandwiches as his diet menu combine with exercise. According to the brother Heath, Jared Subway campaign has all elements of a “sticky” idea, including:
– Simple: Losing weight by eating food that is easy to get, fast, tasty and affordable.
– Unexpected: By eating Subway (fast food) you can have a healthy body by losing weight.
– Concrete: It is proved visually including before and after pictures, oversized pants, sandwiches diet menu.
– Credible: The advertising endorse by a real person based on personal story.
– Emotional: Jared experience a tough moment as an overweight guy, so the audience feels care about him.
– Story: Jared is able to overcome his overweight with a simple way, so it inspires the audience to action.

2. Sight / Visual Imagery
Visual imagery has been used as a tool of communication since 32,000 years ago. Paintings or visual imagery is a universal language, which can translate emotions and instructions. People brain process information by sight (visuals) is different from processing word. Visuals trigger the brain to be open and receiving information.

3. Sound
Sound is a powerful universal communication tool that influences emotion. Sound often combined with storytelling in the form of lyrics to be able to deliver the information / message more clearly. Sound is more powerful than words or images, because it connects into deeper emotional level.

4. Environment (including scent)
Environment is another important communication medium. Environment sends subtle message to the audience through full sensory experience. Through environment you can manipulate sight, scent, touch, taste, lighting, etc. In the retail stores, we can find how environment can send a certain message to the audience / customers.

5. Attitude
During presentation, personal creative attitude is an important part besides the idea itself. Your personal attitude that is connected with your personality will determine how people surround perceived you. Curios and interesting of new things, imaginative and realistic, passionate and objective, playful and disciplined is some creative attitude that you can apply on you daily life. Moreover, being confidence in your work and open to feedback, can also project a positive attitude.

Thomas Vogel (2014). Breakthrough Thinking: A Guide to Creative Thinking and Idea Generation. HOW Books. ISBN: 9781440333262.

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