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STRATEGIC COMMUNICATIONS PLAN TEMPLATE
2006 RASMUSON FOUNDATION AND THE SPIN PROJECT. SOME RIGHTS RESERVED. 1
You gotta have a plan.
Strategic Communications
Plan Template
The purpose of a strategic communications plan is to integrate all the orga-
nization’s programs, public education, and advocacy efforts. By planning a
long-term strategy for your efforts, you will be positioned to be more proac-
tive and strategic, rather than consistently reacting to the existing environ-
ment. The strategic plan will help you deploy resources more effectively
and strategically by highlighting synergies and shared opportunities in your
various programs and work areas.
The creation and adoption of a strategic communications plan represents a
significant step for any organization. For many organizations, the adoption
of such a plan represents a cultural shift toward communications and a
clear recognition that all the organization’s efforts have a communications
element. Public education, grassroots organizing, research, public advo-
cacy, direct service, and even fundraising are all, at their core,
communications tasks vital to the health and success of a nonprofit organi-
zation.
We firmly believe that a strategic communications plan has the power to
transform an organization: both in terms of your credibility and status in
your community and in terms of the way you work together as a team to
achieve your mission and vision for your community.
Use this template as a guide to create a strategic communications plan for
your organization or campaign. This document can help you facilitate a
strategy session with key stakeholders.
An electronic version of this template and a tutorial that will help you to
answer the questions below are available on the SPIN Project’s website at:
http://www.spinproject.org/plangenerator. When submitting the tem-
plate through their website, you can save your work for later edit-
ing and send a copy to the SPIN Project so that one of our strate-
gists can review it and offer feedback.
If you’re ready to start planning strategically in your communications
work, turn the page.
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www.rasmuson.org
CONTENTS
1
INTRODUCTION
How to use this template
2
BEFORE YOU BEGIN
Communications infrastructure,
goals, targeting and research
3
FRAMING AND
MESSAGES
Frame the issue, choose messages
and spokespeople, identify news
hooks and communications out-
lets
4
NEWS MEDIA
Which outlets will you reach out
to and what tools will you need
to be successful
5
FOLLOW-UP
Evaluate your efforts
Some rights reserved. This tem-
plate is licensed under a Create Com-
mons license. You are free to use its
contents for any non-commercial
purpose, provided that you credit
Rasmuson Foundation and the SPIN
Project.
Created for the
Rasmuson Foundation by
The SPIN Project
149 Natoma Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
http://www.spinproject.org
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