“Strategic communicator.” It’s a ubiquitous moniker in the PR industry. In practice, strategic communications plans are anything but consistent. So, what should one expect from a communications expert or agency when one requests a result’s-oriented plan? Here’s our take on the four key components:
Before a plan can be devised, a thorough audit of a client or project environment should be taken. This is a situation analysis and is the foundation from which plan recommendations are made.
This process incorporates research, audits, risk assessment and analysis in order to gain insight into the current landscape. It should also include thorough briefings with you, the client, and with relevant stakeholders so that business goals, objectives, and target audiences are understood. A solid comprehension of a client’s position in the marketplace from differentiators, marketing strategies, and public perceptions to market conditions, and an analysis of stakeholder communities all contribute to an insightful situation analysis.
Once the situation analysis is complete, your agency should have the information required to make recommendations that forms an overall strategic approach in a summary. You should expect goals, strategies, objectives and program specific tactics within a defined scope of responsibilities. It also entails confirmation of target audiences.
Goals are higher-level concepts about what needs to be achieved, a strategy is the approach, objectives are the steps to accomplish a strategy and a tactic is a tool used to achieve the objective.
To be successful in supporting goals, your agency should commit to objectives that are specific, measureable, attainable, relevant and time-sensitive (as well as consider overall strategy). And, tactics should consider an integrated mix of activities that ladder up and support the strategy and will reach target audiences, such as media relations, experiential marketing, influencer campaigns, digital and social, events, community outreach, government relations, and employee and internal communications initiatives, etc.
Scope & Budget
It’s important that your agency defines scope. This allows a client and the agency to understand the roles and responsibilities associated with executing the strategic plan. Within the scope are detailed timelines, human-resource allocations, program guidelines and key milestones/deliverables.
Strategic communication plans should also include budget detailing costs for all recommended tactics as well as any administrative outlays, third party costs, and out of pocket expenses. Budgets should also be able to scale up or scale down given that communications planning process is often fluid and may require periodic adjustment.
Measurement and Reporting
An approach to measurement and reporting should be set during the planning process and take into a consideration a regular cadence throughout a campaign in order to monitor and assess continuously. Successful communicators do not wait until the end of campaign to evaluate. Reporting could include feedback from research, audits, surveys and focus groups to digital and social data (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter all provide activity and engagement reports), as well as media relations analysis and event management metrics. If possible, integrating business results such as sales or engagement results is a terrific way to connect communications objectives with business objectives.
To find out more about how Mansfield Inc. can create a successful strategic communications plan for you, click here.
How much does marketing affect your decisions? Reading positive reviews on a product may influence a purchase, but what about when choosing your next travel destination? Every year, cities, states, provinces and countries release tourism ad campaigns to attract travellers. While seeing a tourism ad campaign may not lead you to book the next flight out, they are useful in creating awareness around an area you may not have considered travelling to before. These campaigns typically showcase the region’s places of interest, happy visitors and unexpected highlights but the best ads dig deeper into what makes the destination truly special to create an effective and memorable ad.
So if you’re still wondering where you should take your summer vacation, we’ve rounded up the six of our favourite tourism ad campaigns of 2017 to give you some ideas.
“Discover Los Angeles: Everyone Is Welcome”
In April, Discover Los Angeles released their global tourism campaign “#EveryoneIsWelcome.” The campaign is intended to remind travellers that everyone is welcome in LA, regardless of the country’s controversial ‘travel ban.’ The campaigns motto, “we believe that what makes us different brings us together. Help Los Angeles share this welcome message with the world,” is a strong one and paired with this ad makes LA look like a good destination to travel to this year.
Tourism Toronto: “The Views Are Different Here”
Our very own Toronto released one of its best tourism ads to date. “The Views Are Different Here,” showcases Toronto’s multiculturalism, the highlights of the city, iconic Toronto moments like Bautista’s bat flip and of course Drake (the title of the ad is a play off of Drake’s ‘Views’ album). The ad is not only extremely well done, but properly advertises the best things about Toronto that make it a great city for anyone to visit (or move to).
VisitSweden: “Sweden on Airbnb”
In a great marketing and tourism idea, Sweden listed the entire country on Airbnb to encourage visitors to get a true experience of the country. The ad is creatively done with the narrator outlining the perks of his home, which is actually just the entire country and its nature. In Sweden, the freedom to roam is a rule which gives citizens the freedom to do anything from sleeping under the stars to swimming in all of the lakes, and now you too can enjoy the freedom in Sweden.
Switzerland Tourism: “#InLoveWithSwitzerland”
The first Indian ambassador for Switzerland Tourism, Ranveer Singh, starred in this ad to showcase his love for Switzerland. Singh runs through his favourite things to do in Switzerland, which includes enjoying the serene views Switzerland is known for, but also includes moments of adventure, like skydiving. The ad does a good job of showing a side of Switzerland that isn’t always showcased.
Nova Scotia: “Let Nova Scotia Surprise You”
This is Nova Scotia’s second year running their “Let Nova Scotia Surprise You” tourism ad campaign. The campaign runs on digital ad banners and videos, televisions and billboards. The campaign aims to show potential tourists things about Nova Scotia that they may not expect to do or see. Ending at the end of this month, the campaign is successful in highlighting the province’s lesser known attractions.
The Philippines: “Experience The Philippines”
The Philippines’ tourism ad is full of bright colours, adventures and happiness: basically, everything you’d want on a vacation. What makes this ad unique? The ending. The campaign slogan, “when you’re with Filipinos, life is better,” is highlighted at the end of the commercial when it’s revealed that the tourist is blind. “You don’t have to see to feel you are home,” is a heartwarming end to an otherwise well-done tourism ad.