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Top 10 tips when planning your council's communications Action Plan for 2024 and beyond

Christmas is just around the corner (oh yes it is!).

Here at Breakthrough Communications, we thought what better time to share our top tips for planning a communications action plan for 2024 and beyond.

Creating a communication action plan can help to ensure your council effectively communicates its messages and goals. It will also make it more likely that your council will meet its objectives throughout the year and beyond.

Council Hive customers can find out more about strategic planning, budgeting, and documents in the Council Hive Hub.

Without further ado, here are our top 10 tips:

  1. Review: Consider what your council is doing well at currently, what is not going so well and what could be improved. Don’t forget to build in additional regular reviews throughout 2024.

  2. Set clear objectives: Define specific and measurable communication objectives for 2024. These objectives should align with your overall organisational goals.

  3. Identify your councils target audiences: Determine your key target audiences or stakeholders. It is after all difficult to know what to say if you haven’t worked out who it is you are trying to talk to.

  4. Consider your key messages: Identify the main messages you want to convey. These messages should support your council’s aims and objectives.

  5. Select communication channels: Most local councils are unlikely to be able to use all communication channels all the time. Think about which will be the most effective in reaching your audience. This could include social media, email, newsletters, press releases, website, events, and more. Develop a content calendar that outlines what content will be shared on each channel and when. This calendar should cover the entire year.

  6. You can’t plan for everything! Update your communications policy so that it outlines how your council will respond to possible crises or emergencies.

  7. Budget and resource allocation: Determine the budget for your communication plan. Don’t forget to consider human resources, there is no point having a plan if there are not enough people and hours in the day to deliver it.

  8. Training: Make sure that your team is trained in communication best practices and tools. Think about what you will need in advance!

  9. Monitoring and Evaluation: Regularly monitor and evaluate your communication efforts and adjust as required. Try to identify key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure and keep track of things.

  10. Review: This one is so good it appears in the list twice! Periodically review and update your communication plan to adapt to changing circumstances or emerging opportunities.

Remember that effective communication is an ongoing process, so flexibility and adaptability are key. Your plan should be a living document that is reviewed and one that evolves throughout the year.

If you want to find out more about communications and strategic planning, talk to us about our Council Hive service today.


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