September 18, 2011 at 12:32 pm #141550
Hi, does anyone have a Strategic Communication Framework in place that they could outline or share.
Now, I’m not talking about an operational Framework which is based around srategies for promoting communication on a particular issue – but one that is set at an organisational level and sets down the philosophy/value of strategic communication, key roles/responsibilities, and good practice which will give effect to strategic communication.
So, looking for a Framework that drives organisational understanding and ultimately cultural change – to move it from one that largely operates with a tactical focus to one that places greater value on a strategic focus, thereby better supporting organisational goals and priorities.
Those who have seen such a framework put in place – what are your experiences of it – did it succeed?
September 18, 2011 at 10:55 pm #141564
I’ve got an okay one that I could share – hit me direct if you are interested. I’ve found that its not a cure all, but a good starting point if you invest upfront in telling your team the key elements of your story. Ultimately, its what you do on a day-to-day basis that counts (talk the talk, walk the walk).
September 18, 2011 at 11:17 pm #141562
Craig – What you are talking about is called corporate branding in the marketing industry. As opposed to trying to sell a certain product or service, corporate brand practitioners are in the business of aligning all the company’s communication activities. See “Are the Strategic Stars Aligned For Your Corporate Brand”? by Mary Jo Hatch and Majken Schultz.
From this perspective, the goal is to discover the organization’s desired brand (image), engage people with it, then develop a process by which you deliver (communicate it) repeatedly and consistently, modifying it based on the feedback you receive.
What’s tricky is to sing from the same song sheet.
See the model above. It is from Connective Branding: Building Brand Equity In A Connected World by Claudia Fisher and Christine Vallaster. Graphic from slide 10 of the book summary here.
Also in the brand literature you can look at discussions of “operationalizing the brand,” which basically means aligning business operations so that the things you say are reflected in the things you do. See Building the Brand-Driven Business by Davis & Dunn (Prophet Brand Strategy) – they have a lot of free reading on their website.
In answer to your question regarding how you move from tactical to strategic – it takes an extraordinarily strong leader (some would say a dictator). A benevolent one, but a dictator, who has complete control over the organization and will not get booted for making the tough calls. Here is a post I wrote on that one.
Good luck and hope this helps.
September 20, 2011 at 6:18 am #141560
Thanks for the insights – very valuable. The brand aspect for the organisation is the next cab off the rank for me – so the info you’ve provided will greatly assist in steering some of the early discussions in the organisation.
My big task right now is embedding a strategic communication philosophy, so that each line area starts to look beyond the next press release to real engagement in communication practice – genuine audience definition, stakeholder mapping & mgmt, selecting best mix of channels to the task at hand, effective risk/issue mgmt strategies and evaluation. Not sure how benevolent i am
– i really don’t want to dictate the terms of engagement – softly, softly first and see how we
September 26, 2011 at 2:06 pm #141558
Craig–Could you please forward what you get to me? I am embarking on a strategic planning process and would appreciate the input. My comm background was in the private sector so I am particularly interested in the govt perspective on strategic comm plans. And thanks Danielle–I always enjoy your posts!
September 26, 2011 at 2:07 pm #141556
John–could you please send one to me as well?Thanks!
September 26, 2011 at 9:53 pm #141554
Sounds like you are looking for a more proactive approach to manage communication as opposed to the traditional “reactive” which usually comes up when something goes wrong 🙂 I’ve written tons of these for government agencies and would be happy to send you an example. Successful plans are specific – they don’t try to be all things to all people. They are based on realistic budgets – most municipal agencies have limited fiscal resources so its important to focus on tactics they can actually afford. Finally – the plan needs to be a good fit for staff resources. Many of my clients don’t have communications folks on staff and these jobs fall to management analysts and other people with less “outreach” experience. The plan should include:
- Research (Where is the agency now and what challenges/opportunities are out there)
- Target Audiences (trust me there are always more than one and you need to customize channels for each)
- Implementation Plan (Schedule/Assignments)
- Benchmarks/Evaluation (it’s not about “output” aka how man news releases – it’s about “outcomes” what fundamentally changed/improved)
E me if you want more info 🙂 Kendall
September 27, 2011 at 12:34 pm #141552
Sounds like an excellent approach.
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