Institutional communication: What is it?

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A institutional communication it is important for companies that seek to have a good relationship both internally and externally. In this way, see what it is, how it works and its importance for an institution that wants to position itself in the market.

Unlike commercial communication, which seeks to communicate about a well-defined product or service offer. Organizational communication aims to promote the image of a company as a whole.

Your goal is above all emotional. In other words, create a relationship between the target audience and the company. This is usually done by communicating the values ​​they want to pass on and the causes they support.

A institutional communication it is also distinguished by the large number of audiences it wants to reach. It is not limited, like commercial communication, only to customers, but is also aimed at internal actors of the company, such as shareholders and employees. So, see more information about this strategy.

What is institutional communication?


A institutional communication it is a large field that has to reach all forms of communication. 

After all, it is through it that organizations such as companies, agencies government and non-profit organizations to function, grow, connect with stakeholders and contribute to society. 

A institutional communication is related to marketing, advertising, press and public relations. But it goes beyond the functions performed by them. Because it seeks to convey the personality of the institution, its image and its values.

Organizational communication includes internal communications. That is, employee training modules, messages about an organization's mission, interpersonal communications between management and employees, and professional communication such as emails and text messages. 

It also includes external communications such as public relations announcements, press releases, marketing materials, etc.

What are the types of institutional communication?

Institutional communication
Source: Image/Reproduction: Canva

Formal institutional communication 

Formal communication follows an organizational structure, like mass communication through an email campaign or in a meeting. 

Being formal, clear and specific is a great way to ensure a good communication and keep everyone informed about the situation in the workplace. Therefore, with formal communication, everyone is informed and aligned with the business objectives.

This type of communication is also necessary to comply with legal documents. For example, employment contracts as well as safety rules and guidelines. They must be communicated to employees in a formal way.

The key to formal communication is professionalism. It requires careful writing and a communication strategy.

informal communication

Many organizations prefer informal communication. It can help employees feel more in control of their own journey. 

One of the main advantages of informal communication is the quickest way to share information in the workplace. 

In addition, it also helps to share and develop new ideas to improve internal or external products and processes. Many genius ideas come from an informal conversation within the company!

directional communication

Organizational communication is directional. This means that the way we communicate changes. That is, it all depends on the position of the person we are talking to. There are three types of directional communication: down, up and horizontal/sideways.

Directional communication—down

This communication refers to an employee communicating with another employee lower in the hierarchy. It is more common in the instructional sense, as:

A supervisor informing the employee of the performance of work with a frontline employee. Also, it could be the CEO sending out a mass email about upcoming changes. At another point, we can observe this communication when a manager delegates tasks in a team meeting.

Institutional communication — up

Upward communication is the opposite of previous communication. It is most common in the following work situations:

A frontline employee asking a manager for advice or guidance on a task. Not only, but also an employee giving feedback to a supervisor or manager.

This communication is effective because it can help build a more equal workplace. When an organization encourages employees to talk about their experiences or even make suggestions for improvement, it is common to see employees who are more focused and increase in productivity. 

Directional communication—horizontal

Horizontal communication refers to communication between employees at the same hierarchical level. It can occur in the following situations:

In a team meeting to share ideas. Not only, but also when an employee asks a colleague for advice or support. Also, when managers reporting to other managers on the results of their teams' tasks

Therefore, horizontal communications often occur face-to-face. However, with more companies working remotely, employees need to find quick and effective ways to communicate. 

Thus, the main options are communication channels such as group messaging services. For allowing employees to chat horizontally throughout the day, no matter where they are.

Internal and external communication

A institutional communication can also be divided into internal and external communication. This refers to the types of people employees communicate with.

  • Internal communication
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It's the way employees interact with each other. Companies need to ensure that employees can network and make professional connections. This can be more challenging for large organizations or those that encourage employees to work on the go.

  • external communication

When the organization communicates with someone outside the organization. That is, of the external world, we speak of external communication . This includes public relations announcements, job openings, marketing materials, etc.

Oral and written institutional communication

Na institutional communication it is also possible to find oral and written communication. They are used every day and play an important role in the success of the company.

  • Oral communication

Oral (spoken) communication is important. It is the way a person communicates face to face with their colleagues, employees or customers. Oral communication helps us form stronger relationships and build trust. 

Remote work has the most challenging oral communication. Many organizations use video calling to ensure teams stay connected and have interpersonal communication.  

  • written communication 

There are a number of benefits to written communication over oral communication. For example, an employee has more time to think through their response and ensure it follows company guidelines. Written communication is less impulsive and therefore can be more strategic. 

Sometimes, this form of communication is indispensable in the case of company rules, orders, schedules or policies. Thus, circulars, magazines, notes and manuals are some common forms of written communication.

However, written communication can also have its downsides. Because they are interpreted, each individual can see in a different way. 

Thus, organizations run the risk of losing the intention that the message wants to convey. In other words, more urgency, alertness and attention can be conveyed when opting for the written form. 

What is the focus of institutional communication?

the focus of institutional communication is to keep the image of the company or organization as positive as possible even in times of crisis.

Corporate communication is a combination of public relations and media, internal communication between employees, managers and leadership with investors, customers and the public. 

When all of this is in sync, the message that is sent to internal and external sources is consistent and builds trust. However, when institutional communication fails, confusion can generate suspicion and the company suffers consequences.

Companies that fail to communicate often face problems attracting customers. Also, when buying a product or service they will face problems among employees. Because they are left without important information or performance expectations.

What are the main instruments of institutional communication?

Public relations

Public relations professionals shape an organization's image. They build the brand, spread the organization's message and minimize the effect of negative publicity.

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business journalism

Corporate journalism is not just a company's public relations team. Although the two work hand in hand. Instead, corporate journalism helps a company tell its story through original content to diverse audiences through its own publications or press releases.

Press office

A Press office is one of the tools developed in institutional communication. Therefore, the main objective is to promote products, services and company identity to the public. In addition, it can be through content that can be turned into news.

This advice Your Press is used to help companies communicate in the press. That is, obtaining mainly positive media coverage. Therefore, the press officer's job is to establish solid and trusting relationships with journalists, to create opportunities to appear in the media.

Institutional advertising

Institutional advertising is a way of sending a message to a specific audience. Thus using media space to send a controlled message. 

Institutional advertising is different from public relations because you tightly control the message. Thus, delivering a finished product to the medium that will run it and paying for the ad to appear in specific locations.

Corporative identity

The corporate identity is created by the company. Therefore, it is the apparent manifestation of the organization. Identity is the visual representation of a company and should not be confused with the image.

The corporate image is the way to perceive an organization. A company usually has different images. 

This is because it has different audiences with different points of view. Thus, one of the missions of good institutional communication is to know the difference between the identity of a company and the image that the public has of it.

Social Marketing

It is the creation, execution and control of programs that aim to influence social change. In this way, he uses many business marketing principles.

Therefore, it carries out an assessment of needs until the identification of the public, develops products and measures results. So, it aims to build a long-term relationship between your organization and its different audiences.

cultural marketing

This type of marketing aims to make the brand's relationship with cultural activities in general. Therefore, the most common strategies are sponsorship of music and film festivals, museums, plays, fashion events, etc.

Also see about: Internal communication , Integrated communication, Business Communication, Digital communication

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