What makes a good communication strategy?

What makes a good communication strategy?

What makes a good communication strategy?

Consideration of what makes a good communication strategy should follow once you have acquired a clear understanding of why your business needs a communication strategy. If any doubt remains,  our clients can attest to the remarkable impact a communication strategy has had on their business.

In essence, a good comms strategy will save you time and money whilst accelerating brand awareness and driving engagement to support lead generation and new business. The keyword being ‘good’; but what makes a good comms strategy? What elements should your strategy contain to ensure it is successful?

Read on to find out.

A good communication strategy delivers clarity

When done well, a communication strategy delivers clarity on who you are as an organisation, what you’re going to say, who you’re going to say it to, when you’re going to say it, and importantly, why you’re going to say it. It creates the opportunity for organisations to marry their vision and their ‘why’ with the challenges their customers face. This then ensures that, to their customers, they are always seen as relevant, trustworthy experts who understand the market and can solve these problems for them.

good communication strategy delivers cohesive vision

It will deliver a cohesive vision

A good communication strategy will also deliver a cohesive vision to your team and business leaders by providing a clear understanding of your business’ identity, and a thorough plan as to how, when, and why you’re going to communicate. In 13 questions executives can use to assess their own communications plans, Mason Burchette from Best Buy Metals emphasises this, saying:

“Based on your current communications plan, what do people think you do and who do they think you are? If you can’t objectively answer these questions by looking at your communications plan, then you should refine the plan until you’re able to.”

It’s important to keep in mind that a communication strategy is ultimately there to help deliver your business strategy. It should be formulated based on the objectives of the business and should evolve as the needs of the business continue to develop. Highlighting this, Niki Hall, Contentsquare, said:

“To stay on course and ensure that the energy put in will add value, executives and their teams need to continually do gut-checks to confirm that communication activities support a big-picture goal, narrative or mission.”

– Niki Hall

A good communication strategy is practical

Practicality is key to a good comms strategy – you should be able to use your strategy as a guide when creating content, engaging in PR activities, and even when communicating internally.
We have our own set of questions you should ask when assessing your communication strategy:
What are you going to say to your audience?
Why should your audience listen?
What channels should you use?
What do you need to do today?
What makes your brand unique?
Who are you going to engage with?
How will you deliver your business plan?
If you can’t answer any of those questions you need to revisit some critical areas of your strategy.

“If you had told me, at the start of this journey, that a business like ours, operating in our space, could have a USP, I would never have believed you. I would not have thought it was possible. But we do and we have, we stand out for all the right reasons. That’s remarkable.”

– Dave Kelly, managing director, 2i

Defining what made them unique was one of the key reasons our client 2i found success with their communication strategy. Finding their voice and their USP enabled them to win new business, find consistency in how they communicate, and much more.

focus and vision to create the right content

The strategy should address five essential elements

To implement a good communication strategy, you need to ensure you cover some key areas. Each of these elements informs each other and are of equal importance so you must cover each part when writing your strategy: 

1 Value proposition

Your value proposition should make clear why customers should buy from you and not your competitors. What are the benefits of buying from you, why are you here and why should your customers care?

2 Sector priorities

Establishing sector priorities enables you to identify commonalities in your target audience – areas that overlap can be brought together saving you money and resources.

3 Target personas

Bring your ideal customer to life by creating target personas – a great way to visualise who you’re selling to, understand their needs and pain points, and why they would be interested in engaging with you.

4 Positioning statements

Following on from target personas you should develop positioning statements for each ideal customer. This should be a message that defines what you are offering and how you’re different, but it needs to be communicated in a way that specifically appeals to each persona.

5 Messaging development

The final critical element of your communication strategy should be messaging development. Brand messages should be crafted for each stage of the buying cycle – awareness, interest, preference, and action.

A good communication strategy is clear, actionable, and inspiring.

To start forming your communication strategy, reach out to our specialists today. And if you found this article valuable, read our complete guide to writing a communication strategy or download the 8-step communication strategy guide here.

Or, if you’d just like to stay in touch – sign up  to receive regular insights on how to make your PR work harder.

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Blu Wireless Tech PR Case Study

Blu Wireless Tech PR Case Study

Blu Wireless - Tech PR

How EC-PR built brand visibility in key target markets for Blu Wireless and achieved #1 Share of Voice in the UK amongst competitors

Context

Blu Wireless is disrupting the market with ultra-fast and seamless 5G mmWave solutions engineered for emerging connectivity needs – from smart city networks to connected vehicles and high-speed transport. Blu Wireless works with integrators, manufacturers and service providers to deliver the superior reliability and speeds of connectivity needed for the data-intensive applications of the future.

Challenge

Blu Wireless’ awareness in its key market segments was varied. In high-speed transport, it had a relatively high level of recognition but wanted to build strong thought leadership in key target publications. In other key target markets, such as defence, the brand needed visibility and wanted to gain recognition for their expertise in this field.

Approach

EC-PR proposed a 12-month media campaign titled ‘Leading with intent’ aimed at ensuring Blu Wireless becomes visible, valued and understood amongst its target customers (C-suite executives and technical experts such as Senior Engineers) across three core segments – public safety/smart cities, defence and high-speed transport, in both the UK and USA. The main objectives of the campaign were to increase brand visibility through thought leadership and establish a dominant share of voice on key messages.

The campaign was centred around a highly targeted proactive media outreach. This was underpinned by strong customer proof points/case studies, partnerships (Blu Wireless’ collaboration with Liverpool 5G Create), thought leadership content (an insight paper) and carefully crafted media narratives that highlighted the disruptive effect of mmWave technology on the future of the three vertical markets and the pioneering expertise that Blu Wireless could offer. 

OUTCOME

Within a year, Blu Wireless achieved #1 Share of Voice (61%) in the UK among its key competitors, with the next best competitor recording just 16% of the UK Share of Voice. The campaign generated tier 1 press coverage in key verticals, particularly in transport and defence-focused publications, such as Global Railway Review and European Security & Defence.

Blu Wireless’ partnership with the Liverpool 5G Project has also garnered a steady stream of coverage in key IT and telecoms publications, such as Computer Weekly, Government Computing, and UK 5G Innovation Briefing.

The ‘Public Safety Beyond Covid-19’ insight paper featured contributions from five authors, notably from the University of Liverpool/Liverpool 5G Create Project Lead and Connectivity Technologies Ecosystems Manager at Facebook, helping cement Blu Wireless’ authority and visibility in the 5G space.

Blu Wireless logo

EC-PR has become our strategic communications partner that delivers not just robust advice but also challenges us as a business. Their ability to create outstanding thought leadership is complemented with a highly professional, tenacious and transparent approach to campaign delivery.

Ciara Barron

Head of Brand and Communications, Blu Wireless

EC-PR’s in-depth understanding of the telecoms and transport industries has strengthened our thought leadership in these markets. What was particularly valuable to us was EC-PR’s strategic recommendation onto how to build awareness in the defence sector where we have started to see some positive results.

Mark Barrett

Chief Marketing Officer, Blu Wireless

Results

#1

Share of Voice in the UK against its key competitors

61%

Share of Voice compared to its nearest competitor who recorded 16%

Tier 1

Press coverage, such as Global Railway Review and European Security & Defence

Share of Voice in the UK against its key competitors

Share of Voice compared to its nearest competitor who recorded 16%

Press coverage, such as Global Railway Review and European Security & Defence

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technology pr

Technology PR

EC-PR is a B2B PR agency specialising in Technology PR and STEM industries. Read more about our Tech PR offering here.

 

Related PR services

GUARANTEED PERFORMANCE

Being in the right place at the right time… We will deliver feature length coverage to your target press… or your money back.

Socura Cybersecurity PR Case Study

Socura Cybersecurity PR Case Study

Socura - Cybersecurity PR

How EC-PR transformed the Socura proposition into a compelling media narrative, delivered outstanding thought leadership and valuable marketing outcomes.

Context

Socura offers a Threat Detection and Response managed service, often referred to as MDR. The service acts as an extension of clients’ in-house capability and is operated by a team of highly experienced security experts. Socura’s analysts work in partnership with the customer to detect and defend against cyber threats.

Challenge

Socura was a new entrant to the highly competitive cybersecurity market looking to establish its share of voice and make its brand visible, valued and understood amongst target customers.

approach

EC-PR proposed a comprehensive PR launch programme that spanned the development of a Brilliant Ideas Bank – a repository of engaging ideas for thought leadership and comment, and an insight paper titled ‘Cyber Security in a Post-Pandemic World’, providing the business with an ‘in’ to discuss with the media and provide the brand with relevance.

The launch campaign also consisted of a highly targeted proactive media outreach that was looking to secure thought leadership article placements, media interviews and brand mentions in cybersecurity and health and care press – two key sectors for Socura.

OUTCOME

The Socura insight paper launch had an immediate and powerful impact on the brand’s share of voice and visibility, including SEO rankings. Coverage in tier 1 tech publications such as Information Age and PCR was accompanied by influencer recognition on social media by the likes of Lisa Forte, a high-profile UK cybersecurity influencer.

The campaign continued with a steady stream of high-quality article placements, including in CISO Mag, Infosecurity Magazine, HealthTech Digital and Tech Native, firmly positioning Socura as a cybersecurity thought leader with a strong focus on health and care.  

Socura logo

EC-PR’s in-depth understanding of the cybersecurity industry has helped secure internal buy-in among our key executives and position them as thought leaders in the market. EC-PR’s strategic counsel has added great value to our PR function and empowered us to become more strategic in our approach to communications.

Andrew Kays

CEO, Socura

We have been totally sold on the value of PR. EC-PR’s expertise, dedication and the ability to transform our proposition into a compelling media narrative has not just built the foundations for our brand awareness and delivered outstanding thought leadership but also generated additional marketing outcomes, such as propelling forward our SEO ranking and social media engagement.

Anna Bancroft

Marketing Manager, Socura

Results

Visits to the
Socura website
increased by

Web-page engagement increased by

Engagement rate per session increased by

Visits to the
Socura website
increased by

32%

Web-page engagement increased by

54%

Engagement rate per session increased by

89%

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Cybersecurity PR

Cybersecurity PR

EC-PR is a B2B PR agency specialising in Cybersecurity PR and STEM industries. Read more about our Cyber Security offering here.

 

Related PR services

GUARANTEED PERFORMANCE

Being in the right place at the right time… We will deliver feature length coverage to your target press… or your money back.

How To Grow Brand Awareness In 2021

How To Grow Brand Awareness In 2021

How To Grow Brand Awareness In 2021

One way to grow brand awareness in 2021 will be to produce quality content and put your business, or a person within the business out there as thought leaders in your industry. Producing thought leadership content garners trust, recognition, and secures your reputation – all important elements of brand awareness.

You won’t be recognised for your views overnight, but you can make a start today.

Growing Brand Awareness with Thought Leadership?

Having a good content strategy and producing high-quality content is essential for any business wanting to make an impact, especially in the B2B sector where purchases are rarely impulsive or ‘a one-off’. In this sector, buyers will form most of their buying decision based on the content you send out into the world.

This can be on your website or via social media channels, relevant industry websites, or industry publications. Even back in 2016, more than 50% of B2B buyers relied on content when making buying decisions. This has continued to grow and will still be important in 2021.

But, with so many businesses now producing content, and lots of different voices in your industry, how do you set yourself apart from the competition whilst increasing awareness of your brand?

Thought leadership is one way to achieve this.

In the same Demand Gen study quoted above, 96% of their survey respondents wanted to see more content from industry thought leaders.

That is your prospective customers wanting your expertise, thoughts, and opinions. So, what are you waiting for?

 

The acid test of any thought leadership campaign is that it needs to be relevant to the target audience; distinctive from what the competition are saying, and demonstrably true. Relevance comes from demonstrating you understand your audience – their business context and their challenges.

– Simon Hayhurst, Coleman Parkes Research

By positioning either yourself or someone within your business as a thought leader you can meet the objectives of both your content marketing and brand awareness strategies.

With a reputation secured as the ‘go-to’ people for knowledge in your industry, more prospective customers will become aware of your brand, what you stand for, and why your knowledge is the most credible.

Positioning Yourself as an Industry Thought Leader

Before you position yourself, or someone in your business as a thought leader, some consideration should be put into choosing the best person for the job.

Who has a burning passion for what your company does? Remember, this might not necessarily be the most experienced person. Can you find somebody that has a good balance between loving what you do, and the knowledge and goods to back it up? Oh, and the ability to articulate their thoughts on what you do?

brand awareness 2021 and thought leadership grpahic

For many businesses, this should be the MD or CEO, but could also be the head of sales, the marketing director, or a salesperson.

Whoever it is, this person must be able to offer fresh insight and perspectives on what you do and your industry.

An important reminder though; thought leadership cannot be accompanied by a hard sell. The aim is to raise awareness, educate and provoke a response.

The Ultimate Guide to Increasing Brand Awareness

Thought leadership will be particularly important in 2021 as it’s a strong way of demonstrating you understand your customers, your industry and how you’re different from competitors.

Today, every business can easily produce content and get it in front of their target audience – the difference is to make what you’re saying, count.

Inside the ultimate guide to increasing brand awareness, thought leadership is one of the core elements we recommend you add to your brand awareness strategy. Download the guide now for further insights and tips on increasing your brand awareness in 2021.

Join our #B2BPR tribe:

If you’ve found this article valuable, you can get more useful insight here:

Download our ultimate guide to B2B PR campaign planning

READ this blog: can brand awareness generate measurable ROI?

watch our video: how to identify your target audience”

At EC-PR we are passionate about B2B communication. We believe your work is amazing and we want to help you tell the world how extraordinary it is. Get in touch.

The Definitive Media Lens Guide 2021 pdf

The Definitive Media Lens Guide

Find your business's maximum sphere of influence and equip yourself with the tools to reach it.

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The Ultimate Guide to Writing a Press Release 2021 pdf

The ultimate guide to writing a B2B press release

Revised for 2021

Our expert B2B PR guide with 9 steps to creating a press release that editors want to publish.

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Is Brand Recognition Different To Brand Awareness?

Is Brand Recognition Different To Brand Awareness?

Is Brand Recognition Different To Brand Awareness?

So far, we’ve dedicated January to all things brand awareness, covering the basics in our blog posts, and releasing the awesome, if we don’t say so ourselves, ultimate guide to increasing brand awareness.

Now it’s time to dive in a little deeper and get to the more complicated elements of your brand strategy. We’re starting by separating out a few terms that often get misused or mixed up when talking about brand awareness.

We’re talking brand awareness versus brand recognition; two terms we often see used interchangeably but shouldn’t be.

What is brand awareness?

We already wrote an article explaining brand awareness but here is a brief recap.

Brand awareness is the level to which people in your target market are familiar with your brand. Can people identify you amongst your competitors and remember key elements of your brand?

Can customers remember why you’re so well-known and what makes you so brilliant? When they have a particular need or problem, are you the first business they think of?

This is all brand awareness.

Increasing brand awareness is taking action to ensure as many people as possible get to know everything about your company, and products or services.

Brand awareness eventually turns people into customers as they become familiar with your values and what problems you can solve for them. Brand awareness also encourages repeat business and turns customers into advocates.

pink fishing nets

 Brand awareness eventually turns people into customers as they become familiar with your values and what problems you can solve for them. Brand awareness also encourages repeat business and turns customers into advocates.

What is brand recognition?

Brand recognition is one aspect of brand awareness and shouldn’t be used interchangeably. It’s an important element of brand awareness but is a much simpler concept, brand recognition is how recognisable your brand is.

The most obvious brand recognition elements are your company name and logo – important visual markers when it comes to recognising your brand. Brand recognition can also include your tone of voice, company colours, even a personality.

Brand recognition is great because it’s the shiny stuff that catches people’s attention.

 

“The first lesson of branding: memorability. It’s very difficult buying something you can’t remember.”

– John Hegarty

The more recognisable elements your brand has, the more likely it is to be remembered.

We’re sure you’ve played one of those quizzes before where you must guess the company name just by seeing a snippet of their logo, hearing a catchphrase, or seeing their brand colours?

Those types of quiz demonstrate how powerful brand recognition can be and why great branding is vital to your business.

Brand recognition vs brand awareness

Hopefully, the above demonstrates the key differences between brand awareness and recognition but this isn’t a ‘take one or the other situation’.

Arguably, brand awareness does play a larger role in your brand strategy because it makes your customers familiar with you on a deeper level than brand recognition. If recognition is the shiny thing that grabs attention, then awareness creates a lasting familiarity that eventually leads to sales, loyalty, and customers championing your brand.

But on the other hand, have you ever heard of a mega-successful company where customers don’t know the name of the business, recognise the logo, or know one detail about the brand? Not really!

In summary, Brand recognition needs to work alongside awareness to give a well-rounded picture of your company!

Join our #B2BPR tribe:

If you’ve found this article valuable, you can get more useful insight here:

Download our definitive media lens guide to help you maxmise your sphere of influence

READ this blog: what is branding and why is it a key component of your PR strategy?

watch our video: how to identify your target audience”

At EC-PR we are passionate about B2B communication. We believe your work is amazing and we want to help you tell the world how extraordinary it is. Get in touch.

The Definitive Media Lens Guide 2021 pdf

The Definitive Media Lens Guide

Find your business's maximum sphere of influence and equip yourself with the tools to reach it.

Download

Subscribe to our updates

Stay up to date with the latest insights, case studies, and PR guides.

The Ultimate Guide to Writing a Press Release 2021 pdf

The ultimate guide to writing a B2B press release

Revised for 2021

Our expert B2B PR guide with 9 steps to creating a press release that editors want to publish.

Download