AB Thinks  →  12th March 2024

Four ways to improve your content with audio

At AB, we believe the potential of audio in internal comms is huge.

So, we’ve picked the following examples to inspire your next audio-as-internal-comms campaign. Get in touch if you want to know more.

Giving voice notes a go
According to WhatsApp, seven billion voice notes are sent every single day. But in our working lives, they are not that common.

Generally, any voice notes sent at work are casual, peer-to-peer. We know of some managers dropping a voice note in their colleagues’ Slack channels on a Monday morning, but they are few and far between.

But why? Voice notes are everything you want your internal communications to be: human, DIY (read: authentic), friendly, and, as everyone has a smartphone with an inbuilt voice recorder, they are easy to produce, too.

Companies like Soundbite AI are developing apps to integrate into Office 365, allowing voice and video recordings to be made and shared easily.

So, why not give it a go?

Audio briefings for a small, specialised audience
We recently worked on a series of audio briefings for a board of directors at a huge multinational company.

These briefings transformed an important – but complex – piece of academic research behind company purpose into a digestible and engaging listen. Split into four parts, each episode focused on a different element of that research and delivered it in a way that we knew would suit the audience.

The most interesting thing about this was the size of the audience – just 10 people. Because of that, we could get to know the audience intimately. That in turn informed all elements of the content.

For example, we knew these board members often drove (or were driven, perhaps) to their meetings. These journeys took an average of 20 to 30 minutes. What better time to reach them with a piece of audio content?

And we knew they would want to have their say. Board members – they have valuable opinions, decisions to make, ideas to share. So, we asked them to respond with a voice note to a question at the end of each episode. That meant they felt listened to and helped us track listens.

The lesson? We tend to think success in audio as about attracting the largest possible audience. A legacy of broadcast radio, perhaps. But taking a creative approach to both the substance and the strategy behind the content means big impact doesn’t always have to mean big numbers.

Going external
Next, a more traditional podcast from everyone’s favourite toy brand.

Our LEGO® Stories was designed to inspire the LEGO community worldwide, with employee stories giving a sneak peek of life in the team.

Through an internal comms lens, this is all about celebrating colleagues at every level of the business, demonstrating value from top to bottom.

And it’s a classic internal/external flip – an internal product hosted on external platforms, making it more accessible to all (including employees) and putting colleagues’ stories in the wider media landscape. In some ways it says, ‘Everything we do here is awesome! You should be celebrated beyond these company walls.’

A long listen
Finally… where better to steal your comms ideas than from the world’s greatest magazine?

Many media brands are now offering an audio version of their long reads alongside the online version of the story. And why not? The writing has been done – all you have to do is hit record and read it out. Offering another way to engage with the content is vital when we think of accessibility, inclusion and different learning styles.

The secret to engaging audio is in the creativity. Not just in the application of a creative structure or concept, but in the way you think and plan to ensure you’re reaching and engaging, educating and enticing your audiences.

Always design with the audience in mind. Focus on impact, not numbers. Consider accessibility and how to boost your current internal comms with audio.

Audio is the most engaging form of content. Mix it with the right people, the best stories and the strongest, most accessible platform, and your audio creations can take flight.

Watch our Creativity now! webinar on using audio in internal communications. And sign up to the AB Thinks newsletter for more nuggets of internal comms inspiration.