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The business opportunity cost of unclear communication

communication design May 20, 2019

Katy Cesarotti | Gallery Design Studio Editor + Copywriter


The cost of poor communication has hit $37 billion annually worldwide, according to a recent report by Holmes. Communication disconnects—between you and your customers, or between you and your team—can result in slowdowns, project delays, and lost sales opportunities.

Do your customers really understand how you can solve their problem? How can you prevent friction between you and your clients, stakeholders, or employees?

In this blogpost, we’ll tackle obstacles to effective communication and strategies to boost customer engagement.


1. If your clients don't understand your service offerings...


Is your value clear to customers? Are they aware of the full scope of potential services you offer?

Companies need to go beyond clear product demonstrations or in-depth feature information in order to speak with customers instead of at them. Meaningful communication depends on showing prospects why they should care—how your offerings can improve their business, make their lives easier, or provide demonstrable benefits.


Create communications that speak your clients’ language.

Develop a direct, concise positioning statement—a one-minute elevator pitch and a longer, more detailed version. These statements can unify your messaging and guide all future communications, no matter what team member creates them.

To create a compelling position statement, ask:

  • What do your clients want? What do they want to avoid?
  • What are your client's main challenges? How do they feel about their challenges?
  • How can you empathize?
  • What does success look like if they work with you?
  • What do you want potential customers to do next?


2. If your marketing doesn’t connect with customers...


It’s tempting to use your marketing materials just to brag on your great company or how many features you offer. But do your marketing communications serve your customers, in addition to your business goals? Why should customers open that email or read through that infographic?

To make an impact on your bottom line, communication has to feel personal and relevant. High-performing B2B marketers are 9.4x more likely to be completely satisfied with their ability to use data to create more relevant experiences.


Connect communications to measurable goals

Create a brand guide or set of templates that connects your positioning to every piece of marketing collateral. It’s great to have beautiful, moving, or creative content, but ultimately every piece needs to play a role in some way of advancing your business goals.

Incorporate a clear call-to-action in every blogpost, whitepaper, or case study. The call to action doesn’t always have to be BUY NOW, but it should be conscious of where you want to direct your reader next.

Original content drives more engagement and performs better than other forms of visual content, according to one survey. Use strategic visuals to convey especially crucial information. Draw the reader’s eye on the facts, figures, or main takeaways you want to highlight the most.


3. If your internal communication is inefficient...


Not all members of your team communicate the same way. Do you prefer email or in-person connections? Close supervision or independent work? Formal or casual? Quick turns or longer lead times? Differences in communication style can snowball into bigger problems with enough uneven execution and critical miscommunications. An Economist survey found that over half of employees were stressed in the last year due to breakdowns in communication.

Do you find yourself explaining the same instructions over and over again, especially when bringing on new hires? Do find you need the same information from your sales or customer service team over and over again? The border between sales and marketing is growing fuzzier all the time, as marketing teams apply data and insights from client-facing teams to strengthen their own efforts.


Streamline routine processes

With visually pleasing collateral, your company can simplify the communications process.

Clear templates for common emails, communications, or creative briefs can help standardize processes and save bandwidth for other tasks. Onboarding videos can help bring new employees up to speed without always requiring a senior staff member to explain common tasks or key features. A marketing/sales playbook gives the whole team access to set brand language  and provides a reusable reference for when questions inevitably arise in the future.

Great communication is the key to great experiences, increasing your retention, and increasing revenue. With streamlined processes and increased efficiency, your marketing team will have more time to focus on what really matters: crafting an effective strategy. Effective communication design can boost your bottom line and forge purposeful relationships with clients, stakeholders, and team members.

At Gallery Design Studio, we can help you communicate your message in a clear, concise and engaging way. Our dedicated team can create whitepapers, infographics, event collateral, presentations, video animations, and more that speak your customer’s language.

Learn more about we can help you enhance communication with your audiences.


About Gallery Design Studio

We’re passionate about supporting B2B businesses with marketing and communication design. As ongoing partners, we help clients transform complex information into clean, engaging visual content. Relentlessly curious, we're inspired by experimentation and always striving to better serve our clients. 

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About the Writer

Katy Cesarotti is a copywriter at Gallery Design Studio. Katy believes that, with clear and concise copy, innovators can spark emotion and drive action in their readers. She’s written for magazines, blogs and cutting-edge startups.