The Path to Social Profitability Requires ‘Connection’
Bringing your Strategic Plan to life
If strategic planning is rooted in deep, meaningful Insight, and Discovery is where breakthrough ideas are brought to life, then all that remains is to determine the essence of your story and the message that will resonate most with your target audience. I call this creating “Connection”.
In order to bring your Strategic Plan to life, it is essential that you zero in on your brand’s unique story and the message that will have the best chance of connecting with your target audience and cause them to take action.
So when you set out to create a new brand or program, or reimagine an existing one, consider preparing the following documents, as your roadmap to establishing the right conversations with your customers, with the goal of optimizing your marketing investment and maximizing results.
The Brand Strategy in an articulation of what you learned from the data collected in the Insight and Discovery phases. It is the foundation on which to base all activities of your organization. Begin by distilling the learning into ‘essence statements’, each providing a clear expression of an aspect of your brand or program.
Then, build out a Brand Strategy Map, answering such questions as: What is the communication Goal? What is the communication challenge we are trying to overcome? What is the consumer insight that can unlock potential? What do we want our customers to do differently and why should they? And lastly, what is our brand promise?
The Brand Strategy will provide the foundation for creating sustainable brand engagement and the basis for visual expression.
The Communications Plan forms the roadmap to creating a stronger relationship with your target audiences. The relationship is created inside a conversation, which can be articulated in all types of communication. And so, your job is to create powerful conversations, which in turn produce deep, long term relationships between your target audiences and your brand and ultimately drive engagement.
The Creative Brief provides clear and unified direction to inform the creative concept development process and helps to ensure that recommendations remain true to the Brand Strategy.
Before you begin development of your next Strategic Plan and start building your critical path, take into account the time needed to create Connection and how it could impact the quality of your next campaign for the better.
If those that are responsible for creating your next new event or program are charged with the responsibility of authoring the essential elements of a Strategic Plan, instead of just being advised of the results, then they will have true ownership and likely be more invested in the outcomes.