How to elaborate a communication strategy?

Communication strategy is still a very sensitive point when it comes to the gap between what is planned and what is actually executed.

The term “strategy” began to be used in the business world in the mid-1940s, through game theory, by Von Neumann. In this context, it was a “complete and detailed plan to direct possible situations”.

When we approach the communication universe, we have interesting points. Some authors include objectives and goals as part of strategy, while others make clear distinctions. 

One of the references adopted in the studies of strategy in communication management is Marcélia Lupetti’s, according to which it comprises the set of actions planned and executed from the internal and external environmental analysis and market opportunities, the communication diagnosis, the audiences involved, the determined communication goals, and the specific positioning.

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After understanding the concept of communication strategy, it is time to understand how we can formulate and elaborate one in an integrated manner. 

We know that diagnosing and planning is not enough: it is very important that the brand structures an effective work, based on a communication strategy that is adequate to the company’s reality.

Therefore, the formulation of strategies, which should only be done after the diagnosis and definition of objectives, also needs to take into consideration:

  1. Richness of data about current moment, market, customers, competitors, macro and micro environment obtained in the diagnosis;
  2. Choice of a segment and target;
  3. Availability of financial resources;
  4. Clear definition of business objectives;
  5. Communication objectives associated with business objectives;
  6. Competitors and their movements in the market;
  7. Risk plan
  8. Capacity of execution;
  9. Human resources;
  10. Technical knowledge;
  11. Detailing of the marketing or communication mix;
  12. Possibility of unfolding the strategy into a tactical plan and feasible actions;
  13. Creativity;
  14. Multidisciplinary nature;
  15. Obligation, regulations and limitations of the sector in which the company operates (an example is the regulated areas)

Communication strategy is not so simple

After understanding the importance of the diagnosis and the definition of objectives to enable the development of the strategy, we saw how many points need to be considered to develop an integrated communication strategy.

When searching the social networks and the Internet, we found many misconceptions about what strategy is and is not.

See some examples of what communication strategies are:

  • Strengthening authority in a given niche;
  • Repositioning of the brand;
  • Entry into a new segment.

Now, let’s understand what communication strategies are not:

  • Relationship actions with the press;
  • Partnership with influencers;
  • Creation of posts and others.

So, in general, these are the main steps in developing the communication strategy for your company:

  • Communication research for building the diagnosis
  • Elaboration of the diagnosis
  • Communication planning
  • Definition of the strategy
  • Action or tactical plan
  • Strategic management
  • Measuring results

It is in phase 4 that the management of everything that was planned in the strategic sphere and that guided the creation of the tactical plan will be done.

So, don’t confuse the two anymore and see the importance of having well-designed strategies:

  • Having a tactical plan without a strategy can lead to crises and loss of money;
  • Isolated tactics are no substitute for a good strategy

This article was produced by Isabela Pimentel, from Comunicação Integrada.