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Three tips for making your strategy plan more strategic:

You know the drill -- you dutifully pull together sales numbers, facts, figures and budgets to create dozens of slides to present your proposed initiatives for the coming year. But are you helping others envision what success, or failure, looks like?

✅ Start with the words “challenge” or “opportunity.”

The “challenge” creates a sense of urgency and outlines potential outcomes if no action is taken. This could be losing market share, relevance, operational efficiency, momentum, etc. It supports the narrative, “we need to do something” and sets the foundation for the actions needed to address it.

The “opportunity” sets the stage for potential successes in the short or long-term future. It supports the narrative, “we should do something” explains the “why” -- backed by research, and helps others to visualize the results of your proposed efforts.

✅ Be prepared to answer, “how will this drive sales?”

To win investment and trust in the communication and public relations functions, it’s important to prove impact to business goals and correlate results to the bottom line. Set KPIs, metrics and anticipated outcomes, including the rationale behind initiatives and context as to how these efforts will contribute to company success.

✅ Focus on facts.

📊 Use industry trend reports and consumer insights to inform future goals and validate strategies.

📊 Support creative ideas with hard metrics. Examining potential reach, conversion and ROI will help you make a solid decision on whether or not you really need that event, social media partnership, newsletter series or outreach campaign.

📊 Allow experts to prove your point -- include predictions and analysis from respected opinion leaders.

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