Does my project need a comms plan?

By Angela Bensemann, Director Halo Communications

If you’re even asking yourself the question you probably already know the answer.

Personally, I think every project, event or initiative should have a communications plan – it might not need to be elaborate – a simple checklist may suffice – but you do need one.

Why’s that you ask?

It’s because you always need to know:

  • What you’re trying to achieve – be that people coming along, more sales, informing people of an opportunity (or disruption).
  • Who’re you’re talking to, e.g. clients, customers or certain segments of the community.
  • What you want to tell them – your key messages of who, what, where and when.
  • What the risks or issues might be and how you’re going to mitigate them.
  • Your strategy (plan of attack) – the way you’ll get your message out. That might be via social media, radio, TV or print, it could be posters, website, direct email, public meetings, advertising etc. Whatever is appropriate to your situation.
  • The budget you need to roll out your messages and advertise your event.
  • Your action plan to make sure things happen in the right sequence, on time and ultimately within your budget.
  • Whether what you spent your time and money on worked so you can measure your success!

If you’re working on something major, you might need something more elaborate. In addition to the above it can be useful to:

  • Provide as much background information as possible including current context and an environmental scan. What else is happening at the same time?
  • Do a deeper analysis of your stakeholders and audiences. What are their issues and interests? What is the best method to communicate with each of these?
  • Look at your issues and risks and rank them on a matrix of high to low.
  • Outline members of your project team and their roles.
  • Identify your key spokesperson.
  • Think about how you’re going to evaluate the success of your communications.

Good luck with planning for your event or issue and if you need a hand, drop us a line at Halo Communications.