Message Development Workshop
A Workshop on Message Development was held in Hotel Lake Castle, Dhaka from March 21-24, 2011. In the world of high technology and wide media coverage, developing right messages for the right audience on right time is more challenging than it was before. People, especially the urban dwellers are more likely to have higher exposure to multiple media in their regular days and they have their own discretion to receive or reject the messages. The effectiveness of any message depends on various factors such as exposure to the message, comprehension, endorsement of new ideas, intention to take action and finally adopting new behavior. By following an appropriate and proven process, the programmers can increase the chances of developing effective and result-oriented messages. Considering these facts and to enhance the capacity of the project staff in developing health related messages RHSTEP and BAPSA took the support from Bangladesh Center for Communication Programs (BCCP) to conduct a Message Development Workshop.
A total of 25 participants including 18 project staffs of various levels working under RHSTEP and BAPSA, 1 of each from GoB, FPAB & PSTC and 4 creative personnel actively participated in the workshop. The facilitator group comprised of the senior and mid level professional staff members of BCCP.
The purpose of the workshop was to enhance the message development skills of the project staffs’ and at the same time to initiate message development process for RHSTEP and BAPSA. The specific objectives of the workshop were to:
• To improve the message development skills of the participants
• To strengthen participants’ skills on pretest techniques through hands-on exercise
• To help participants to identify and prioritize problems and intended audiences
• To develop the themes for the messages/materials and explore the possible media
The sessions of the workshop were designed based on a systematic process which has been considered as a state-of–the–art in message development. The contents of the workshop were balanced between lectures on conceptual frameworks and participation of various professionals through group exercises. Providing conceptual frameworks for message development along with experience sharing, group work and open discussions, made the workshop highly participatory and result oriented. A total of 8 messages/materials were developed by the participants following the steps: analysis, strategic design, development, pretest and revision. However, the messages developed during the workshop were the first drafts. These drafts have to be refined, the technical points must be reviewed and a final round of pretesting would be conducted before final production and distribution.
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