Many carefully crafted communication strategies were upended or at least severely tested over the past year as communicators tried to get ahead of mounting disruptions, continuing to deliver key messaging on behalf of their clients and decision-makers. Organizations that began with a strong communications plan in place prior to the tumultuous year were better positioned to respond and pivot accordingly. Many that didn’t have a concrete path forward found themselves making missteps as they let the shifting landscaping carry them adrift. One only needs to look to the news and social media for examples.
As an independent contractor, I look to a client’s strategic communications plan for direction on how to stay on course with messaging to best help my clients achieve their goals, even as circumstances evolve. Whether or not the plan holds up to various challenges is one thing; not having one to begin with leaves organizations vulnerable and leaders scrambling to find their way during a time when they should be out in front furthering their mission.
Whether I’m tasked with creating a strategic communications plan for a client or following it, understanding their mission is the first step. Understanding their stakeholders, organizational culture, and their place in their industry and community provide equally critical information to help shape the execution of communications.
For communicators, thinking strategically has never been more critical. A clear roadmap ensures our clients and leaders are achieving their organizational goals. Within that framework, communicators have the foundation to be agile to respond to disruptions and new opportunities.
Join us to learn more about creating a sound communication strategy at the second installment of the Pro Management Series on Feb. 18. Communication Strategy: Up Your Game is ideal for those interested in becoming certified through IABC or looking to gain insights into strategic planning.
VP, IndyComm, IABC Orange County
Chief Strategist, Empowered Public Relations