The web is a place to build dialogic communication – a free interchange of ideas that completes the communication loop – a building block of relating to the public.
There are five pillars to dialogic communication:
1) Feedback. A feedback mechanism is a medium that provides means for interactive communication. Such mechanisms must be monitored and responded to continuously.
2) Usefulness. The information on any site must be useful and relevant to a) the organization b) the message or c) the product. Usefulness reigns over packaging.
3) Fresh. Want return visitors? You need fresh content, what’s the motivation for revisiting without new ideas?
4) Ease of use. Any site should be easy to understand in terms of layout and navigation. Intuitive is a description often cited.
5) Watch the exits. External links may facilitate the exit of visitors. External links should only be used when necessary and should provide a way to navigate back.
Be careful, it’s just PR theory from the early days of the web.
Adopted from: Kent, Michael L. & Taylor, Maureen (1998) Building Dialogic Relationships Through the World Wide Web. Public Relations Review
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Photo credit: Beth Harte in presentation at a Vocus user conference circa 2009.