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Creating a Strategic Marketing Communications Plan

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Don't blink - you might miss something! This is how it feels to live in our nanosecond culture, where everything is changing at an accelerated pace. Our nanosecond culture has changed nonprofit marketing communications forever. The controllable flow of information through easily identified channels is disappearing. This makes your strategic marketing communications plan even more valuable to rise above the noise to put your organization in the spotlight!

Published in: Marketing

Creating a Strategic Marketing Communications Plan

  1. 1. In The Spotlight: Creating a Strategic Marketing Communications Plan Deborah Spector NPO Connect Marketing Communications Expert Creative Solutions & Innovations | www.creative-si.com | 404.325.7031
  2. 2. Communications without direction… …is like cocktail conversation!
  3. 3. Creating a Strategic Marketing Communications Plan Goals for today’s session: – Understand the role of marketing communications – Why knowing your audience is most important element of communications – Research tools to get you started – Review the elements of a marketing communications plan
  4. 4. Strategic Marketing Communications Your lens to focus on the people you serve, the individuals you seek to influence and the donors you wish to cultivate. Creates powerful, focused & targeted appeals for mission impact, to build your brand and for fundraising.
  5. 5. Marketing Communications Plan Supports your mission and the objectives laid out in your strategic plan. Focuses your marketing and communications, making sure that all activities work together to support the big picture. Gives you the focus to know where you’re going, what you need to say & what channels you need to positively interact with your audiences.
  6. 6. Characteristics of a Good Strategic Marketing Communications Plan 1. It is participative 2. It is dynamic 3. It is flexible 4. It is audience-driven 5. It combines the best of PR and Marketing 6. It contains a mix of strategy and tactics 7. It is doable 8. It is measurable – Hollister, Trubow & Associates
  7. 7. Research Tools Marketing Audit SWOT Analysis Audience Discovery Interviews Focus groups
  8. 8. Start with your Vision & Mission Think of the words “visionary” and “missionary.” A visionary imagines possible futures, whereas a missionary does the work to achieve the desired future. The vision is your guiding force; the mission is your guide to all your initiatives. Creative Solutions & Innovations | www.creative-si.com | 404.325.7031
  9. 9. Elements of a Marketing Communications Plan Goals & Objectives Target Audience Strategies Tactics to engage target audience Create Messages Choose Channels to deliver messages Roles & Responsibilities Work Plan Budget Evaluation
  10. 10. – Zig Ziglar A Goal is a dream with a deadline.
  11. 11. Objectives must be SMART: Specific Measurable Attainable Relevant Time-bound
  12. 12. The Difference between Goals and Objectives Mission Goal Objective Goals are broad, Objectives are narrow. Goals are general intentions, Objectives are precise. Goals are intangible, Objectives are tangible Goals are abstract, Objectives are concrete. Ethereal Actionable
  13. 13. Know your Audience! Be curious & formalize your curiosity using marketing research: Demographics Psychographics Economic Environment Social Media Usage Donor Habits
  14. 14. Everyone’s Involvement In Life Is Through Different Sets of Filters. ~☐O Marketing Perspectives in the 21st Century Christopher Lemley, J. Mack Robinson School of Business, GA State University
  15. 15. Effective Non-Profit Message Cycle Here are the results of your money Here’s the story of what we do How what we do affects you Send us money
  16. 16. Plutchik’s Wheel of Emotion
  17. 17. Strategy - Ideas of how communication goals can be achieved. Develop Key Messages Prioritize Key Audiences Identify Ways to Reach Audiences Conduct Ongoing Blogger Outreach Develop Best Practices for Social Media Define & convey brand & brand value to target audience Expand marketing reach to engage more people in each target audience
  18. 18. Strategy & Action Communications Awareness Comprehensio n Conviction Commitment Mass 40% 10% 5% 5% Direct 40% 50% 20% 10% Small Group 10% 20% 35% 15% Person to Person 10% 20% 40% 70% • Awareness brings your nonprofit to the attention of an audience • Comprehension develops an understanding of an organization • Conviction matches individual interests to institutional offerings • Commitment assists in the decision process – Adapted from Barton-Gillet Company
  19. 19. Comm Channel Provide Info & dialog Fundraising News & Link Promote Research Provide Resources Promote Events Website      Blog    On-line Newsletter      Email Facebook YouTube Podcast Twitter Webinars Conference Face to Face Meetings SEO Press Releases PSA Conference Call Special Events
  20. 20. Relating Key Audiences to Messages Audience What they need to know Key Communication Messages Communication Tactic Service Users What we offer them How to access our services Where to go for advice We provide useful, practical information & support We are trustworthy & reliable We put services users first & value their opinions Website Webinars Face to Face Local Elected Officials What we want to see changed in policy terms Our strong evidence base and supporter base We have a strong evidence base and our calls are grounded in robust evidence We have a good knowledge of the policy environment We are a well-respected, authoritative organization Email Face to Face e-newsletters White Papers Supporters We have the ability to make change if they help us We need you to support our campaign by writing to your elected official, signing our e- petition, donating to us etc. Direct Mail Email Facebook Special Events
  21. 21. Don’t forget – Money Follows Communication “Any group that does not have an effective communication program will raise only a fraction of the money they would otherwise attract.” – Fundraising Guru Roger Craver Strategic Communications for Nonprofits
  22. 22. We live in a connected culture
  23. 23. Inbound Marketing
  24. 24. Integrate your mix…
  25. 25. Look at your brand strategy Does your brand story not only inspire you to tell stories, but also inspire customers to tell stories?
  26. 26. It’s Not About Technology … It’s About People!
  27. 27. Work Plan How do you roll out the implementation? Create & manage steady stream of activities. Ensure coordination in timing and impact. Build in evaluations before the end of the year. Be clear on who does what & by when.
  28. 28. Budget
  29. 29. Remember: Objectives & Goals Drive Measurement & Evaluation!
  30. 30. Wanted – Great NPO Communicator! Sampling of necessary skills: Great writer in multi-mediums – annual reports, web, online newsletters, press releases, SM Prolific content generator across mediums (written, video, audio, & photo) Marketing generalists – New & traditional media Proactive communicator & connector Driven project manager Compulsive commitment to brand consistency Driven by metrics Up-to-date on best practices and emerging trends
  31. 31. Thank you! Please visit my website for blog posts, resources and more: www.creative-si.com To connect with me via my Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. Creative Solutions & Innovations www.creative-si.com | 404.325.7031 October 16, 2008

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