European Cluster Collaboration Platform Webinar - How to communicate about your impact: learn about cluster communication strategies

Submitted by Lee Gibson on 10 July 2020

On 30 June, 2020, the European Cluster Collaboration Platform (ECCP) hosted a webinar sharing guidance on how best to communicate cluster impact, demonstrating the importance of strategies and mastering digital tools.

Organised in response to requests from the cluster community, who had expressed the need to improve the visibility of their work, especially on social media, the webinar was attended by more than 100 participants, including cluster managers representing specialised SME intermediaries from different sectors, communication managers, policy makers, and other actors from industrial ecosystems.

It demonstrated how effective communication can help clusters overcome some of their main challenges and strengthen collaboration among cluster members.

The presentations and discussions underlined the importance of following the most effective structure and avoiding common mistakes in storytelling and it was stressed that communication needs to be an integral part of a cluster's strategic plan from the very beginning.

A poll of participants revealed that 28% felt their cluster was not communicating its impact effectively, while 20% thought that their cluster was succeeding in this regard. When asked whether their cluster had a communication strategy, 27% answered positively and 34% negatively.

The webinar was introduced by Dr Ulla Engelmann, Head of Unit in charge of industrial clusters within the Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs of the European Commission and featured presentations from three communications experts.

Charlélie Jourdan, a communications strategist who has worked with more than 500 European Union projects, shared his insights on creating communication and social media strategies for clusters; Eva Juul Langlands, Head of Branding and Marketing at Odense Robotics, discussed how to attract talent and position a cluster brand digitally; and Iván Borrego Valverde, General Manager at Beauty Cluster Barcelona, shared communication learnings from a young, fast-growing cluster in the digital age.

The speakers agreed that key messages and tools need to be adapted to different target audiences and objectives and the need for constantly monitoring communication activities and measuring their impact was also emphasised.

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