The Makings of an Effective Fact Sheet

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With the right elements, fact sheets can serve as one of the best ways to communicate project information to the community. Below are five of these elements.

1. Clear Language: A good fact sheet lays out the most important details in a way the public will understand. That means it organizes the information in an easily digestible flow and format and uses clear wording instead of engineering jargon.

2. Succinct Copy: Your audience’s time and your fact sheet’s space both are limited. These limitations necessitate precise wording that communicates your message in the quickest and shortest way possible.

3. Visuals: Maps, photos, and other images serve two purposes. First, they grab your audience’s attention. Then they complement the clear, succinct copy to provide your audience a complete picture of the project.

4. Answers: Your audience will have questions. An effective fact sheet anticipates and addresses some of the most important and most common concerns. This helps the community feel more informed while minimizing your staff’s time answering questions on an individual basis.

5. Contact Information: Even though your fact sheet will address some of the more pressing issues, it is impossible to address every question and concern. Show your audience you recognize this fact and provide contact information where the community can seek more information.

Linda Palacios