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Internal communications: audience-centric planning

A team of people in a planning meeting.

Get a template that will help you keep audiences front and centre of your internal communications planning.

Fresh supports many large-scale global change programmes and received a Best Change Communications Award of Excellence at the Institute of Internal Communications Awards 2021.

Here are some of our key tips for successful planning:


It all starts here. Whether it’s aligning employees with purpose and values, implementing a complex change to ways of working – or indeed delivering any communications activity – it should all start with objectives. Your communications objectives should underpin the programme/project/campaign objectives which, in turn, should have line of sight to your organisation’s strategy and business objectives.

Audience insight

It’s vital to do work upfront to understand your audiences, to avoid missing the mark with your communications. From stakeholders – such as leaders with influence – through to impacted employees, it’s well worth taking the time to understand them, their communication preferences, and any barriers to engagement. All this insight will have a bearing on how you plan your communications.


The ‘know, feel and do’ model for internal communications is a great starting point but it’s useful to expand this to include ‘the when’, plus your audiences’ current state and the intended future state. This will chart their journey towards engagement and highlight potential barriers. You’re then able to target specific comms channels, engagement activities and training to address those barriers.

Download our handy high-level, audience-centric communications plan template.


As part of audience insight gathering you will have data that can be your benchmark. Make sure you add pulse checkpoints at key stages of your communication delivery to measure awareness, understanding and adoption levels. Having a change network is also critical to ensure bottom-up feedback on how the change is landing – giving you the opportunity to fine-tune activities for maximum effect.

Can we help you with your internal communications planning? Just drop us an email for an informal chat.