By: Jane Goorden
As an Amsterdam-based communication agency, we deal with texts produced by all kinds of companies on a daily basis – whether it’s in Dutch or in English. Lately, a lot of our work has involved communication surrounding Brexit, helping clients answer questions like: What should we communicate? Who’s our target audience? And what’s the best time to release certain information?
As a company, you want your clients to know that they can rely on you – to provide them with certainty. But in the case of the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union, certainty is hard to come by. You might not even know yet what impact Brexit will have on your company, making it impossible to predict the consequences for your clients or business relations. As a guiding principle, though, keep in mind that it’s usually best to let the outside world know as you’ve made a decision. Reassure your clients by sending them an email, or posting an article on your company website, in which you clearly outline what steps they will need to take.
If, as a result of Brexit, your company is confronted with new rules and regulations, permits and import tariffs, things can quickly get complicated. So always try to explain things to your clients in the clearest possible terms. Show them that you have a thorough understanding of the new situation and that you have taken the appropriate measures to handle the consequences. Inspire confidence by giving your clients and suppliers a clear, concise explanation of everything they need to know. Still unsure of what’s to come? Be honest and transparent about this and let your clients know that you’re working on it. Trying to maintain radio silence or releasing incorrect information won’t help matters.
Who needs to know what?
Finally, pay attention to who your target audience is and try to put yourself in their shoes: how much do they already know and how much do they need to know? There’s no need to bother your clients with irrelevant details about legal technicalities. Instead, summarise the new state of affairs by outlining the consequences for your daily operations as they affect your clients. Of course, you can also provide a more detailed explanation if needed or at a client’s request. But remember that your client has other business relations too, which could also be affected by Brexit. So try to avoid burdening them with information they don’t need. Simply inform them of what’s to come and alert them if they need to take action. The same holds true for your suppliers. They will probably need different information than your clients, so make sure that you tailor your communication to fit the needs of each of your target groups.
Relocating to the Netherlands?
Brexit Amsterdam offers translation services and training courses to help you make the transition as smoothly as possible: