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Category: Stakeholder Communications

Outside-In Thinking

Posted by on Friday, February 8, 2013 - no comments

Top-level strategic communicators bring what I call ‘outside-in’ thinking to their organizations —that is, the ability and instinct to see how an issue, initiative or activity will play among audiences and stakeholders. And as a result of this discernment, the outside-in thinker has a talent for framing content in a way that hits the sweet…

Research Your Way to Rocking Communications

Posted by on Thursday, December 13, 2012 - no comments

Research is probably one of the most under-rated areas in which a strategic communicator can really shine. It may seem odd to consider the proposition that as a communicator, you should also be a researcher. Aren’t the researchers those folks in other parts of the building, or outside your organization altogether? Isn’t your job to…

Mapping Out Your Audience Terrain

Posted by on Wednesday, December 5, 2012 - no comments

Communications is all about knowing your audiences: who are the key audiences you must reach in order to achieve your objective; where they are; and what kinds of messages will be of interest to them. If you’re working in the private sector, it’s relatively easy to define who will be the key audiences shaping purchasing…

Plan to Keep Cool in a Crisis

Posted by on Thursday, November 8, 2012 - no comments

You’ve likely already experienced the real truth that panic isn’t the best stimulus for sound communications strategizing. To the contrary, the time to start preparing for a crisis is well before your organization is in crisis mode. When a crisis does hit, you’ll handle it with infinitely more calm and confidence if you’ve already developed a…

Making Your Workshop Work

Posted by on Friday, October 12, 2012 - no comments

It’s probably the case that most of your work as a communicator consists of one-on-one discussions with internal clients, management or external stakeholders. But from time to time, your job calls for you to stand up before a larger group of people and make communications magic happen. One of those times that I find most…

Communications Planning: The Principles

Posted by on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 - no comments

Here are my all-time Top 5 Principles for strategic communications planning: Communications should be focused on results, rather than activity. Often, communicators are in the business of generating “stuff” – speeches, media releases, and promotional materials. The communications function is much more effective when it is driven to generate results, such as increased rates of…

How and Why to Evaluate Invisible Value

Posted by on Thursday, August 23, 2012 - no comments

As I’ve often blogged about before, there’s nothing more important to your communications career than using evaluation to demonstrate the value you bring to your organization. Yet one of the most frustrating things about being a communicator is that some of the areas in which we add the most value are often invisible. They’re the…

Getting Down to Tactics

Posted by on Wednesday, August 8, 2012 - no comments

When you’re immersed in the long haul of strategic communications planning, figuring out tactics may well be the most exciting part of the whole enterprise. At last, you get to translate all of your conceptual planning into concrete activities that achieve results! Here’s the most important thing to keep in mind as you enter the…

What to Do When ‘An Issue’ Arises

Posted by on Wednesday, July 25, 2012 - no comments

Issue management is one of the most high-profile elements of strategic communications.  It’s about forging a deliberate response to a challenge facing your organization, ranging from a relatively minor day-to-day incident to a full-blown crisis. But it’s not, strictly speaking, just a communications function. Rather, it’s an activity in which communications leadership marshals many different…

A Penny for your Thoughts

Posted by on Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - no comments

It’s easy, when you’re planning a communications strategy or project, to get caught up in the reams of material to read and the plans to be written. But there’s no substitute for leaving your desk and going to talk to people. By consulting your colleagues and audiences, you’ll feed ideas, perspectives, opinions and (if you’re…