Using Communication to Support Program Efforts
Communication is the means of delivering a message through radio, television, newspapers, magazines, online outlets, and other channels to reach or impact people widely. Communication is 1 of 10 essential public health services. It is also included in the 2021 Core Competencies for Public Health Professionals [PDF-659KB]. Communication supports the overall program and can help sustain program efforts after funding ends.
- Audience Research – Learn about your audience to inform your communication efforts. This may include reviewing available data, surveying the audience, conducting interviews or focus groups, or working with partners who know the audience.
- Planning and Implementation – Develop a plan with objectives, audiences, channels, and activities. Develop and test messages and materials.
- Evaluation – Track what’s working, where changes are needed, and how your communication efforts perform.
View these trainings for more information about using communication to support your program.
- Communication Planning (on-demand training)
- Identifying Audiences (on-demand training)
- Audience series – Hispanics and Blacks or African Americans (Aug 2021); American Indians and Alaska Natives (Oct 2021); Asians, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders (Dec 2021)
- Making Social Media Work for You: Insights, Trends, and Innovative Examples (June 2022)
- Conducting Virtual Interviews and Small Group Discussions
- Media Impressions Worksheet (on-demand training)
Sharing Program Successes
Success Story Generator – Use to develop success stories for decision makers, public health practitioners, partners, and others to promote your program efforts.
Making the Business Case for Prevention Video Series – Learn about efforts to prevent chronic disease in communities.
- Communication Planning Tool [Word-47KB]
Helps plan and sustain communication efforts.
- Audience Worksheet [Word-27KB]
Use to better understand an audience.
- Message Mapping Worksheet [Word-32KB]
Helps create messages for an audience.
- How to Organize Communication Efforts [PDF-177KB]
Gives ideas for organizing communication work and sharing messages.
- Media Impressions Worksheet [Excel-1.39MB]
Tracks the estimated number of messages, people reached, and value of communication activities.
- Publication List: Evidence for Communication and Marketing in Community Health Settings [PDF-900KB]
- Expert Panel Meeting on Communicating about Overweight/Obesity with Hispanic Audiences – Summary Report (2017) [PDF-432KB]
- Expert Panel Meeting on Communicating about Overweight/Obesity with African American Populations – Executive Summary (2015) [PDF-1.1MB]
- Testing Core Community Health Messages with the Public [PDF-319KB]
- Best Practices User Guide: Health Communications
- Best Practices: Putting Evidence into Practice
- CDC Gateway to Health Communication
- The CDC Clear Communication Index
- Health Literacy
- Health Communication Playbook
- CDC Guide to Writing for Social Media [PDF-14.2MB]
- Making Health Communication Programs Work: A Planner’s Guide [PDF-4.05MB]
- Making Data Talk: A Workbook [PDF-2.3MB]
- Clear Communication
- What Works: Health Communication and Health Information and Technology [PDF-1.89MB]