In the last 12 to 18 months we have had our fair share of projects put on pause or in some cases, cancelled, but we’ve also had a few projects where, instead of throwing the strategy out the window, we have simply taken a different path.
Days before the first lockdown in 2020, we were due to launch an international PR and social campaign for a partnership in the sport and education industry. As two of the industries heavily impacted by the global pandemic and the world closing its doors, we had to think fast to keep the possibility of the project alive.
We focused in on the local market, created content that highlighted the benefits of well curated and bespoke online learning (over the quick flip of face to face to online), and we used the voices of current sport industry leaders to spark a conversation about the future of sport, and the role of education in creating a sustainable industry.
The results of the campaign flip led to featured content and interviews with ABC’s QandA, The Times Education, Stuff.co.nz and many local news, sport and education publications and radio. It also grew a social media platform of passionate sport and education influencers, built a content rich website, and developed creative for an effective advertising campaign.
The point of sharing this story is not about the results of the campaign, but about the strategy we had originally built for this project. Strategies should be designed to guide how you communicate and engage with your audience, not to be set in stone. A good strategy should give you the structure to move and adjust your approach, by providing a strong framework that guides your narrative, objectives and messages, accompanied by an actionable plan that can switch, change, be dialed up or down.
Now more than ever, the structure of a strategy must include this level of flexibility. If we build to change, then there’s no need to throw our plans out the window. Instead, we can spread them on the table, move the pieces around and find a different pathway to deliver the project or keep the campaign alive.