strategic marketing makes a difference
Fly by the seat of your pants – or think, plan and act strategically. Which method better describes your organization’s approach to marketing and communications?
If you have this whole strategy thing under control, kudos to you. If you tend to let the chips fall where they may, you may want to listen up.
“Being strategic is having the discipline to take a step back and consider how communication contributes to an organization’s strategic initiatives and overarching goals,” said Trish Helgeson, Agency MABU’s chief marketing officer. “It’s about having the courage to ask the tough questions and validate whether the organization’s communication will help it meet its strategic objectives.”
Helgeson recommends asking a number of key questions as you begin a strategic communication planning process:
- Where are you today?
- What has worked in the past?
- What have you learned from other efforts?
- What resources and tools do you currently have in place?
She also emphasizes the importance of understanding your organization:
- What is your brand?
- What is your unique advantage?
- What are your mission, vision, and values?
- What key strategic initiatives are already underway?
- Who are your target audiences, stakeholder groups, and competitors?
- What opportunities and risks does your organization face?
- Do you have the right information and insights to guide the process?
- Have you adequately assessed the landscape, key players and existing situation?
And ultimately, consider how to best communicate your message to your audience:
Helgeson said groups sometimes neglect to see themselves through the lens of their target audiences. “It’s vitally important to connect with audiences on their terms and view your products or services from the perspective of what’s in it for them rather than what action you want them to take,” she said.
“Beginning with a thorough situation analysis will contribute to the development of a successful strategic communication plan and advancement toward organizational goals,” Helgeson said. “Building a high level of reflection and evaluation into this process will help ensure its success.”
Need a hand getting started with strategic marketing?