Four times a year, I meet (or Zoom) with a couple of clients to review the strategy we developed against the outcomes and make any necessary changes.
The purpose of this process is to always keep the strategy relevant and fit for purpose.
This quarterly review begins with the tactics:
- Were the tactics well executed?
- Did they achieve their desired impact?
- What did we learn from these tactics?
- What can we improve in the future?
- Which tactics should we continue and discontinue?
Then we look at the audience:
- Are the personas still fit for purpose? What do we need to update?
- Are there any new trends we should acknowledge?
- Did we learn anything new about the audience?
- Is the community still properly positioned given the changes in the bigger sector?
- Are there any new competitors we should review?
- Are we still targeting the right audience?
Then we review the objectives (KPIs):
- Are the objectives we have realistic?
- Do we need to revise our targets based upon the information we’ve received so far?
- Are the objectives we set realistic/relevant to achieve the current goal?
Then we review the goals:
- Is the community generating the desired return on investment?
- Do we need to expand/narrow the goals of the community?
- Do we need to update our stakeholder map? Are there other stakeholders we need to win over?
- Is our internal communication approach working? Do we need to refine our internal narrative/communications?
- What resource/budget requests should we make (if any?)
Finally we review the team:
- Did team members achieve their goals?
- Do we have the right team to achieve our near-term goals?
- Are there any new skills/knowledge we need to acquire?
- Do we need to update the roadmaps of any individual team members?
- Are there any process issues we need to consider?
- Is everyone clear about what’s expected of them over the next 3 months?
This isn’t a comprehensive list, but you get the idea.
If you want to stay strategic in your approach to building communities, it helps to review your actions against the strategy and keep the strategy updated. It’s a huge waste of time to invest a huge amount of time, energy, and resources into updating the strategy and then constantly reflect upon it.
If you don’t have time for it, get outside help (it’s what we do). Otherwise, schedule this 2 to 4 times throughout the year. You will be amazed how useful the process is.