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Point of View

Every successful communication effort has an inherent point of view. Think of point of view as the tone, voice, style or personality  for your communication.

Your point of view shapes not only what you say, but how you carry yourself. It colors how your audience perceives the messenger and how it receives the message.

Point of view can be carefully designed and cultivated, or an organic outgrowth of your organizational style. It might be brash and confrontational (PETA), intense and provocative (The Truth Campaign), or funny and self-deprecating (Grist.org). Whatever the case, even the smallest act of communication has an inherent point of view embedded in it. The opportunity lies in deciding how to maximize its value.

Much like the brand associations that consumer marketers work so hard to cultivate around products and lifestyles, point of view is also an important strategic consideration for organizations seeking to drive social change. A wealthy foundation spending down its endowment or a grassroots organization in high stakes public fight may each feel a higher tolerance for risk or confrontation than a community foundation seeking to appeal to a diverse set of donors.

Whatever your circumstance, the key to success is acting authentically. That means communicating with a point of view that is believable, appropriate and aligned with your organizational values.