As a true marketing agency, were often selected to develop strategic Marketing & Communication plans for a range of organisations, from corporate product launches, through to start-up business Marketing Strategies or Communication Plans for charities and non-profit community profiles – so, when we were recently asked for some guidance, it made sense to create a blog post with some insights that we’ve learnt over the years.
So, where should you start when looking at developing your communications plan?
Well, I think the best ‘place’ we can start is at the top level – the strategic content and ‘essence’ of the communications plan;
In our minds, there are several communication initiatives (steps), that y9ou should review when creating your high-level plan, these should start at;
- Context – Where are you? Why are you here, how did it happen, what’s the history?
- Environmental – What are the key factors externally that could affect your communications?
- Stakeholders – Who are they and what is their driver? What are their expectations of the communication strategy and how will they be managed?
- Objectives – The priority for your business – What do we want the comms plan to do?
- Strategy – Where are you going, and why?
- Audiences – Who are we trying to talk to? Why, what do they want to hear? How?
- Messages – What is the proposition and why does it matter?
- Tactics – Methods and ‘ways’ you will look to communicate with your audience – these can be practical ones (colour/ touch/ feel) or operational ones – How will you implement your strategy in order to reach the right people at the right time?
- Challenges – What’s the ‘foreseen’ issues and how will you resolve these?
- Budget – How much and when
- Evaluation – How we will measure it? What are the critical milestones and KPIs we should use?
You’ll note from this article that many of the above criteria for the steps are question based – is that a coincidence? No, of course not, the sole purpose of a clear plan is to make you think – and to ensure that the outcomes are driven by fact, evidence and thought generation.
This is very much a snapshot look at a communication plan, but we hope that it’s given you some insight into where you should start.