Having a communication plan for your company is necessary, crucial, and beneficial. You’ll soon learn the reasons why this is so as we go through this ultimate guide on how to create a communication plan. There will be plenty of references to make sure that anything technical can be easily understood. Let’s start with the first one!

In the Prison Break series, there’s a man who makes a crazy plan just to get his brother out of prison. The story revolves around that plan. Without it, it would just take one episode to tell the story. The reason why the series is so successful is because of how much that plan has been developed by the writers of the show, keeping viewers hooked on what’s going to happen next. 

Whether you’re a communications manager, brand manager, or marketing director, you’re going to need a plan so that you can achieve the goals that you have for the company. For example, you may want to increase brand awareness, see to it that the company is in line with its identity and brand image, or even tackle something huge like rebranding.

In developing a communication plan, keep in mind the words of Nicolas Boileau who was a 17th-century French man of letters, “what is well conceived is clearly stated, and the words to say it come easily.” The logic behind this statement is something that ought to be adopted when it comes to creating a communication plan. 

Before you even start developing your plan, the first important step is to understand what it’s all about. You also have to understand the purpose of a communication plan. Only when you understand completely what the plan is will you be able to use it efficiently and effectively.

Table of Contents

What is a Communication Plan?

A communication plan is a tool that enables you to reach your business goals. This is possible through strategies that include sending messages to a clearly defined audience. The messages are sent through specific communication channels that the majority of the target audiences use. 

When you know how to develop a communication plan, it will allow you to know who you are addressing, the type of messages that you will send, and of course, how you’re going to get those messages across so that they can reach the target audience. 

It is why the first question to ask first is, “how do you develop an effective communication plan?” This is the first step before you start communicating with your audiences because each person you will reach out to should have customised messages that will be sent through the best communication channels. 

If proper planning is not done before communicating with the target audiences, then there’s a big chance that your efforts will be wasted. Now that you have an idea of what a communication plan is, it’s time to learn the answers to the question, “how do you write a good communication plan?”

What Should a Communication Plan Include and How to Apply Them to Your Business?

In order to start creating a good communication plan, you’re going to need ten components. Once you’ve mastered all of them well, then you can definitely take your communication plan to the next level. Let’s start with the first component in developing a communication plan outline.

The Diagnosis as the Basis of Your Plan

Whether you’ll create a small business marketing communication plan or one for a big company, you’re going to need the diagnosis first before you can start developing the plan. What exactly is the diagnosis we’re talking about? 

Let’s take inspiration from what doctors do. Doctors listen to and observe their patients first before they talk about the probable condition that they have. In fact, doctors ask all important questions and allow patients to express themselves fully. That’s because the objective of the doctor is to understand what’s happening to the physical health of the patients. 

The doctor doesn’t focus on prescribing a cure or treatment immediately. Instead, doctors first try to find out what’s exactly going on in the patients’ bodies. This way, they can gain deeper insights into the well-being of their patients. The better understanding the doctors have of the patients’ condition, the more effective the treatment that they can prescribe to them.

Assessing the current communication plan.

You may be wondering what this has to do with creating a communication plan. You see, to be efficient in your work, the first step is to make precise “diagnoses” so that you’ll know what will be the best solutions to use. 

In the same way that Sortlist knows that a huge chunk of time is spent looking for the best communications agency, we have found a solution. We can help you by recommending the most suitable agencies that will be the best fit for your business needs. 

So, when you know exactly where your business is at present and where you want it to go, then you can start developing your communication plan. And to add to that, you must also look back to what your company has done before and the results that you got from previous strategies. To help you assess your business, here are four ways that you can “diagnose” it.

Analyse the communication strategies that are already in place. 

In doing this step, you’d want to know what your company is already doing when it comes to communication. We’ll share with you some of the important questions that you can ask yourself so that you can start to analyse the communication strategies that your company is implementing at the moment. 

The questions we’ll share with you will help you to see how the communication strategies of your company are doing. You will also have the opportunity to know which platforms have given your company the best results. Knowing these things will allow you to gather relevant pieces of information that you’ll need in creating an updated communication plan. 

  • Does your company have a blog? YouTube channel? Podcast?
  • How often do you publish content for these different formats? 
  • Does your company have an online presence on social networking sites like Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and others?
  • If yes, how many articles, posts, or tweets are being published in each platform each week or month? What is the company’s purpose in sharing such content? 
  • How many followers do you have for each social networking site? 
  • Do you interact with your followers? How often do you interact with them?
  • Do you have an email list? How often do you send out newsletters?

By answering these questions, you now have an idea of what is already in place in your company in terms of communication strategies. Apart from these questions, you can also gain more insights by knowing what your stakeholders think.

What is a Stakeholder?

The stakeholders of your company are all the organisations and individuals who will be most likely to be affected by the company’s activities. They are also capable of having an influence on your company. 

When you perform an analysis of the company’s reputation, you will be able to know where the company is in terms of its image and how your audiences perceive the brand. By being aware of this, you will be in a better position to communicate – from the topics you choose to the tone that you will be using.

A stakeholders’ meeting discussing communication plan.

Continuously monitoring the brand’s reputation is even more important today. It’s because information spreads so fast, and the smallest error can damage the company’s reputation. One such example is Monoprix. 

It wasn’t too long ago that Monoprix became the subject of a huge controversy. There was an incident involving a blind young man who was accompanied by his guide dog. This man wanted to shop in one of the brand’s stores. But he was not able to do so because the store manager reasoned that animals could not enter the store. 

A discussion soon follows, and the manager calls security to forcefully expel the blind young man and his guide dog out of the store. Such an incident happened in just one of the many stores of the brand. If it happened fifty years ago, the local press might have reported about it, and the reputation of the brand won’t suffer too much. 

However, since it happened in our time where the whole incident was filmed and posted on Facebook, you can guess what happened next. The video got over six million views, and the national press was all over the story. The store chain received so many hate messages on each of its publications. 

Today, the internet has given anyone with a smartphone and a wifi connection a voice and an avenue to air their opinions. That’s why businesses should always be aware of their reputation because the tiniest mistake can ruin the brand. There are seven areas which you can check when you’re assessing the brand’s reputation:

  • Products and services
  • Level of innovation
  • Vision and leadership
  • Governance and employee care
  • Economic performance
  • Emotional attractiveness
  • And the corporate social responsibility

The goal should be to strengthen the company’s image and reputation in all of these seven areas. The stronger they are, the more protected the company will be whenever a reputation crisis emerges. Do ask and assess where your company is today in the seven areas mentioned above. 

Know how satisfied your customers are with your products and services. Evaluate whether your employees are happy with their role in the company. Check how the brand manages to relate to customers on an emotional level. And know how the company contributes to its social responsibility. 

It’s crucial to understand all these because it will allow you to discover and determine what the priorities are. For example, you may have planned to communicate about a new product. However, you discover that the employees of the company are not happy. That means the priority ought to be the welfare of the workers. 

The plan for the new product can take a backseat for now so you can set up an action plan for internal communication. Remember that for this step, the goal is to arrive at a diagnosis. Know your company as best as you could so you will know what are the right actions to take.

Analyse the Competitor Brands

During this phase, you’re going to need a comparative analysis of your company and its competitors. An example here is if your company is Coca-Cola, you’d want to know what Pepsi is doing, as well as what customers think and say about Pepsi. 

By knowing what Pepsi is doing, you will know whether their strategy is working. You can then take inspiration from that, improve on it, and then apply it to your own communication strategies. Do remember though that you shouldn’t be just a mere copycat. It may work, yes, but the brand wouldn’t stand out and create the desired impact.

Analysis of competitor brands.

Check to see what is being done by competitors but remember to be better. Know the level at which the competitors are playing, and strive to go higher. Work harder and smarter than your competitors. It’s the way to truly stand out.

Analyse Your Environment

Analysing your environment is the last analysis you need to make to complete the diagnosis. Once you’ve completed all the analyses, you’ll have a more concrete foundation to build your communication plan. 

The analysis of your environment will let you understand the threats and opportunities that are present in the company. The objective here is to identify what are the opportunities where the company can boost its communication strategies. There are two tools that you can use to better analyse and understand your environment. 

The PESTEL analysis and the SWOT matrix are the two tools that you can use. We will briefly and concisely explain them in this article. Don’t worry, there are numerous resources about these two, and a quick Google search will provide plenty of materials that can explain them in further detail if you need them. 

The PESTEL analysis consists of six parameters that can impact your company. They are political, economic, social, technological, environmental, and legal. Since these parameters can affect your business, it is necessary that they are monitored regularly. 

As for the SWOT matrix, there are four elements to look into, namely, strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Knowing your environment, the opportunities, and threats, will mean the difference between success and failure for your business. Let’s take a look at a couple of examples that will show you what we mean exactly.

Marketing tactics.

The first example that we’ll examine is the controversy on the Delhaize supermarket chain in 2019. As we know, one of the prominent issues right now is the conservation of the environment. Many are battling against the use of plastic, and the era of zero waste is here. Customers are more aware when it comes to the sustainability of the products they consume. 

However, Delhaize did not put this into consideration when they implemented a new strategy in 2019. What they did was that for every 20-euro purchase, customers would receive plastic parts similar to that of Legos. It was intended for children so that they can build structures with it.

The plastic parts were placed in plastic trays and then packaged in plastic bags. So that means that there are two pieces of plastic that are wrapped in plastic. But many customers do not like this idea of getting too much plastic with their purchases, especially now when consumers try their best to avoid them. 

This is a typical example of how a company launches a strategy without really taking into account how it can affect the environment and how the customers will react to it. 

And then there’s another example, Le Slip Francais. This company specialises in textiles that are made in France. They are popular because of how they use social media, and that’s good. They have a great marketing team who knows how to listen to customers and take advantage of the opportunities present to boost their communication. 

So, there was a time when the company created a campaign that was inspired by the season 7 of the Game of Thrones series. It is an image of a men’s underwear, but it’s made of fur, with the caption “Winter is Coming.” Since the series and the tagline were so popular during that time, this campaign was able to run successfully. 

So, to close this chapter on how to arrive at a diagnosis for your business, remember that the foundations of the communication plan that you’ll create can greatly affect the success of your campaign. There are four key skills that make up the foundation of the plan. 

  • First, know what your company has already implemented, then innovate and identify the platforms you’ll use that will be most effective. 
  • Second, understand how your stakeholders perceive the brand so that you’ll know what your priorities are. 
  • Third, examine what the competitors are doing so that you can improve on what works and beat them into becoming number one. 
  • And last, assess your environment so that you won’t make mistakes when you’re going to implement your strategies. 

There you go. Now you know how to make the necessary diagnosis in order to develop your communication plan. Feel free to make a cup of coffee before moving on to the next chapter!

How to Position Your Brand to Better Communicate with the Audience.

What is your business about? What are the goals of the company? It’s vital to know the character and goals of your company because it will impact all kinds of communication that you will set up. You need to be clear on the company’s mission, vision, and values.

Knowing your company’s mission

The mission is the reason behind the company’s existence. It’s the reason why you fight daily to make the company the best in your industry. When you bring value to the customers and provide solutions to their problems, you are then able to fulfil that mission.

Target in dartboard game representing company’s mission in communication plans.

Some of the best examples include companies like RyanAir, which allows travellers to go on trips to European destinations at affordable prices. Netflix lets its subscribers watch awesome shows and movies conveniently. And Slack provides an improved and streamlined internal corporate communication for companies. So, how about you? What’s your company’s mission?

Knowing the company’s vision

The vision of the company is whatever it is that it’s trying to achieve. What is an ideal world for you? The company’s vision is composed of ideas on how it wants to impact the world. For example, Facebook’s vision is to have an ultra-connected world where each person can communicate with other people at any part of the globe. 

Another example is IKEA with its vision of creating products that improve the daily lives of many people. Spotify wants to be a cultural platform where musicians can fully express their potential, and everyone can have an immersive artistic experience. 

The company’s vision is more powerful that its mission. A communications manager ought to know the vision of the company so that he or she will know how to reach it. Do you know the company’s vision, and are you working towards reaching it?

Knowing the company’s values

Lastly, you need to know the company’s values. What’s most important to the company? What are the elements that the company finds the most crucial? The values guide the behaviour of the company; that’s why, as a communications manager, you need to take them to heart. 

If you do not know the company’s values, then what might happen would be communication strategies are implemented, but they won’t be able to correspond to the values of the business. Let’s take a look at one example where the communication strategies are perfectly aligned with the company’s mission, vision, and values: Airbnb.

All of Airbnb’s mission, vision, and values can be expressed in its logo: the Belo. The company’s mission is to allow anyone to book accommodation in any place in the world at affordable prices. At the same time, homeowners are given the opportunity to generate income. 

Airbnb’s vision is to provide its users with the feeling of being at home anywhere in the world. Whatever accommodation the user books, an Airbnb is going to feel more authentic compared to a hotel room. Guests will feel more at home in an Airbnb than staying in an impersonal, generic hotel room, no matter how luxurious it may be. 

And finally, the values of Airbnb boil down to three things: People, Place, and Love. When these elements are combined, it results in a wonderful symbol: the Belo. Airbnb’s logo embodies its mission, vision, and values, and it also determines all communications. Is a certain strategy in line with the Belo? It’s easy to determine if it is so because of the clarity of the brand’s position. 

Whenever you feel that you’re not certain about the communication plan that you’re developing, always go back to the company’s mission, vision, and values. These will lead you to do what is most in line with what the company hopes to achieve.

Understanding the Goals of the Company

As humans, when we communicate with other people, we do it not just for the pleasure of communicating but also because we have a clearly defined objective. So, if you are developing a communication plan, you ought to know your reasons for doing it. What do you hope to achieve? What is your objective? All the steps you’ll take should allow you to reach your goals. 

However, you do have to be careful because there’s a distinction between the company’s strategic objective and your communication objective. While they are related to one another, they are two different things. Let’s clarify how one is different from the other.

Company goals on a corkboard.

A strategic objective is the company’s overall objective which it wants to achieve. For example, when Apple releases the latest iPhone, the strategic objective is to sell as many units as possible so that the company generates maximum profit. 

As a communications manager, you’re going to rely on the company’s objective when it comes to creating your communication goals. So, if Apple wants to sell a great number of iPhones, then your objective is to make that new model known to as many individuals as possible. So, the communication objective is to create awareness about the latest iPhone. 

Knowing this, what are the various kinds of communication goals that you can set? Here are some that you can draw inspiration from:

  • Recognition and awareness – raise awareness about the company, it’s products and services, and make sure that people know about the brand. 
  • Adoption and Emotion – try to have the audience adopt the company’s vision so that they will be able to relate to the brand at an emotional level. The objective is to create relationships as well as generate loyalty. 
  • Attitude and behaviour – encourage the target audience to patronise the product and services of the company. The objective of the communication strategy is to trigger this expected behaviour. 

When developing your communication plan, it is vital to know exactly what you want to achieve. Once you already know it, then it’s going to be much easier to take the next steps. Here are some pieces of advice that you can use when setting a goal. 

  • Ensure that the communication goals are based on the company’s strategic objectives. 
  • Evaluate that your objective is a communication goal. “Increasing sales” is a sales objective and not one for communications. 
  • Set your Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound (SMART) goals. 
  • Do remember to consider the budget and the resources you’re going to need to be able to achieve your communication objectives. 

So, you’ve already made the diagnosis, and you now know how to position the company as well as set objectives. It’s time that you start determining who your target audiences are. Who will be the people you will be talking to?

Who Are Your Target Audiences?

One of the goals you also have to remember is that you should fully understand who your target audiences are. This is crucial because you will need to customise your messages so that your audiences will feel that the company cares about them and that the products or services that it offers will be able to improve their quality of life. 

The more that you can customise the messages that you send out to your audiences, the more that those individuals will be encouraged to take the step and buy the product or service. So, you have to know what’s appealing to your potential customers. Give them good reasons to follow the brand and be curious about what it can offer them.

Knowing the target audience.

When you know the people that you want to communicate with, then you will be able to create better messages that will be more effective in converting them into customers. Here is a list of the profile types that will most likely be your target audiences. 

Financial Targets:

  • Shareholders
  • Investors
  • Financial analysts

Commercial Targets

  • Customers 
  • Prospects
  • Leads
  • Users

HR Targets

  • Employees
  • Trade Unions
  • Executives and Managers

Public Targets

  • Public figures
  • Members of the government
  • Government officials

Local Targets

  • Local shops
  • Residents in close proximity to your business

Media Targets

  • Journalists
  • Influencers
  • Bloggers
  • Non-government organisations

The key to effective communication is your ability to empathise Remember that you need to be able to put yourself in the other person’s shoes so that you will have an understanding of how they feel when they are presented with certain pieces of information. What makes them tick? When you know your target audience, show empathy, and be relatable.

What is Your Message and How Do You Make It Stand Out?

It’s one thing to know who you want to send your messages to. However, how do you make that message stand out and be memorable to them? For this step, you need to know what’s going on in the minds of your target audience so that you can develop a message that won’t easily be forgotten. 

There’s a good book by Jonah Berger entitled, Contagious: Why Things Catch On, that explains six elements that you can use so that you can create better messages that are more effective in enticing your target audiences. We can call the six elements STEPPS, here they are:

Social Currency

Understanding social currency is easy. Basically, people want to portray a good image of themselves when among other people. While there are many ways to do this, one of the best ways is to be mindful of how one speaks.

Communication manager speaking to an audience.

The things you say can affect how others perceive you. So, if you want other people to find you interesting, then you must be able to say interesting things. When it comes to building your message, you can ask yourself whether it can spark curiosity to your audience. This is important if you want to be memorable to them.

Triggers

The context in which the message is sent is just as crucial as the message itself. For example, you’ve finished your tube of toothpaste, and you tell yourself that you’re going to buy a new one after work the next day. However, the next day, you’re in front of your sink and notice that there’s no toothpaste anymore. You realise that you’ve forgotten to buy one.

The trigger here is the sink where no toothpaste is present. And that pushes you to act on it, so you decide to buy another tube. It goes the same to the trigger that we’re talking about here. You need to look for a trigger that will encourage a certain behaviour in your target audience. 

You will need to send them a specific message which the audience will remember. That’s why the context is important here because that’s the way that the audiences will see that the message makes sense and is relevant to them.

Emotions

For a message to be truly effective, it must also be able to trigger emotions in the people who are receiving it. Regardless of your area of expertise, remember that it’s going to be humans who will receive the message. And as such, the message should be able to stir their emotions. 

The best way to get into a person’s mind is not speaking to their intellect but instead, relating to them at an emotional level. For your message to be remembered, it has to strike the emotions of the audiences. That’s why you need to know your audiences well so that you’ll know what’s going to make them tick.

Public Character

The message can be remembered by the audience even more if they are exposed to the message repeatedly. An example here is the Apple MacBook. MacBooks have a special feature where the logo on the back of the screen lights up when you turn the computer on. What’s so special about this?

Well, you see, it may not be incredible at first, but it’s actually a genius marketing strategy. The Apple logo is more visible in its computers compared to how other brands display theirs. So, if you want your audience to remember your brand, make sure that your message is visible, and your audiences are exposed to it as often as possible.

Practical Value

So, going back to what we discussed earlier about how people want to give a good image of themselves to those around them, it’s not just about relaying interesting information. There’s also another way, and that is to help others. What does this mean exactly?

It means that the information you give shouldn’t only be interesting, but it also should be helpful. The information should be able to help people solve their problems. Some pieces of information can be entertaining but useless. Whatever you give to your audiences should be able to make their lives easier.

Sharing valuable information to the audience.

Now, if you have information that is useful, it shouldn’t be something that you keep for yourself. You should also be happy to share it with the people around you and to those who may need it. When building your message, it’s important that it has practical value.

Stories

Lastly, stories are another vital component of the message. We like stories, and we’re better at remembering information in the context of a story. So, whenever possible, build your message around a story. This will allow the message to be etched in the minds of the people who you’re sending the message to.

Learning the Strategy Through NordVPN’s Example

Your strategy and your formula need to correspond with each other for you to reach your goals. The strategy is the method you adopt so that you can achieve your desired future. The art of planning, as well as using your resources to their maximum potential, is what will allow you to reach the goals you’ve set. 

For example, you want to go from point A to point B. This could be from your home to the grocery store, so to make this journey, there are several ways for you to choose from. You can go on foot, ride a bicycle, use public transport, use your car, and even hitchhike. 

It is the same when it comes to your communication plan. You need to choose the best strategy that will allow you to achieve your goals. A concrete example that we can look into is the case of NordVPN. So, what is NordVPN?

VPN stands for Virtual Private Network, and what NordVPN does is that it offers protection while you are using the internet. It prevents you from getting hacked, and you can also look through web content that is not accessible in your geographic area. 

For this service, NordVPN is available for just 2.62 euros a month. That’s a very small price to pay for the perks that one can get from this company. Many people use NordVPN because they want to protect their personal data while they’re online. How did NordVPN make itself known?

The company placed its bet on a single strategy, and that is the YouTubers. What they did was to sponsor YouTubers which means compensating them and in exchange, they will integrate a short presentation about NordVPN into their videos. 

It’s a very effective strategy because the YouTubers already have a good relationship with their audiences. Their viewers trust them so when they endorse a product or service; the viewers are more inclined to try it out.

YouTuber making a video.

Now, let’s go back to the chapter where we talked about objectives. Remember the difference between the strategic objective of the company and the communication objective of the communication manager? Well, here’s a good example to explain it further. 

With NordVPN, they seek to grow their user base. It is their strategic objective. The communication objective, on the other hand, is to increase awareness about the product through the YouTubers. 

NordVPN was able to get over eight million views from just a few videos. Imagine all the exposure it was able to get from all of the videos that featured NordVPN. Here’s what we can learn from this example: it’s crucial to find the right strategy and make the most out of it so that you can implement your communication plan effectively. 

When you’ve done all the preliminary work such as making the diagnosis, understanding your positioning, developing your goal, knowing your audience, and creating your key messages, then the strategy should be most effective.

The Tools You Need to Reach Your Target Audience

If you observe the people in the street, you’ll probably notice that many of them look at their smartphones. This device has been getting a huge chunk of the attention of 21st-century human beings. It is an important fact that you have to keep in mind. 

In getting your messages across, you should know first how you’re going to send that message. In this case, mobile phones and gadgets are tools that almost everyone in the world has. It captures the user’s attention; that’s why it’s a good way to reach your target audience. 

People use their smartphones to check their social media accounts. Almost half of the world’s population has a social media account on several platforms. Every year, new users sign up, and up to about a million users are added every day. That’s over 300 million people spending an average of 2.5 hours on social networks daily. 

With these numbers, you simply cannot ignore the immense power that mobile devices have. That’s why you should also adapt your communication strategies so you can take full advantage of this tool. 

When you’re developing the communication plan, do choose the best tools and the most appropriate platforms so you can get the expected results. Social networks are something that you shouldn’t ignore because they can do so much for the success of your communication strategy, allowing you to reach your goals.

Scheduling When You Will Send the Message to Your Audience

The objective here is to know when the best time to communicate with your audience is. Build a schedule so you can reach out to your target market in the most fluid way possible. The schedule will allow you to see the big picture. By this, it means that you will be able to know which messages should be published at a set time on a particular platform. 

When you’ve finished planning and preparing your schedule, you can be more confident that your message will get the best exposure on the right social media sites. You may use a Gantt chart for this. 

Using a Gantt chart will let you see the duration of each communication strategy that you’re planning. Of course, it’s not necessary to make the chart from scratch. You can do a quick search online, and you’ll find that there are already plenty of good templates available.

Knowing Your Budget and Making Use of Your Resources

In business, you’re going to need the right resources to make sure that you will have the fuel to run your marketing campaigns. It’s the same with your communication plan. For you to achieve your goal, build and disseminate your message, reach your audience, develop your schedule, and everything else, you’re going to need the right resources for them. 

The resources that you need do not just mean money. It can also be time, talent, skills, and other important tools that you will need to make your campaign a success. So, there’s a crucial question that you need to ask as a communication manager: How much is the budget for the communication plan to be implemented?

Limited budget for communication plan implementation.

It’s vital to have the right skills when it comes to convincing the higher-ups about the budget that you need. So, be careful about coming up with the right arguments so you can defend your position. You can explain the importance of the communication campaign to the success of the business. 

Two basic resources should be made available to you: money and talent. These two variables are crucial in determining the success of a strategy. The more financial resources are available to you, then you’ll have a wider range of possibilities to explore. 

In all these, you’re going to need a team. Actually, a talented team is more important than financial resources. Even with little budget, a resourceful team can make the most of what they have. Conversely, no amount of money can make a mediocre team great. 

So, before you embark on the financial expenses, try to explore first the free tools that are available, and make the most of them. You may get by just fine without having to pay good money for tools you’re going to need.

Assessment: Let’s Learn this Lesson From Elon Musk and SpaceX

The communication plan is much like launching a rocket. Let’s take a look at SpaceX as an example. This company is led by Elon Musk, who aims to send humans to Mars by 2024. But what you know for sure is that building rockets, making them take-off and land it is a complicated matter. 

But how did SpaceX turn its many failures into successful missions? The answer is quite simple but a hugely complex task: the measurement and control of every variable. For SpaceX to achieve the desired result, they sift through each step of the take-off and landing process. That way, they understood what needed to be improved so that they can reach their goal.

spaceship launch

This is the kind of mindset that you’ll need in approaching your communication plan. Take a good look at the strategy before as well as after it is launched. It’s the best way that you can improve on the next campaign. 

So, before you implement the communication plan, you’re going to need to know how you’re going to assess its effectiveness. To do this, you will need Key Performance Indicators or KPIs. This is how you know if you’ve reached your goals. 

Here’s a list of questions that you can ask yourself after you launch a communication plan.

  • Did you reach your goal?
  • Have you followed your strategy?
  • Was the strategy effective? How?
  • Did you reach your target audience?
  • Were all the key messages sent?  
  • Did you follow the schedule?
  • Did you use the budget to its fullest potential?
  • What did you learn from the campaign?
  • What were the challenges you faced?
  • What could have been done better?
  • What did you do well?
  • What went wrong?

It’s crucial to ask yourself these questions so you can improve the results for the next campaigns. 

Congratulations! Now you know the components of a good communication plan. You are now equipped with the knowledge that you need for your next communication campaign.

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Takeaway

Here’s a summary of everything you’ve just read. It will help you remember the components that you need to create a communication plan more easily. 

  1. The diagnosis
    • Analysis of your present communication
    • Analysis of your reputation
    • Analysis of your competitors
    • Analysis of your environment
  1. The positioning
  2. The objective
  3. The audience
  4. Key messages
  5. The strategy
  6. The tools
  7. The planning and scheduling
  8. The budget and resources
  9. The assessment

Our hope is that you found this guide helpful and useful for you. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask us! We will be more than happy to share what we know with you.