Navigating Summer 2024: Strategic Communications for Membership Organisations

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The summer of 2024 promises to be eventful, with the first general election since the Covid-19 pandemic, a delicately balanced economy and a busy summer of sport occupying minds (and headlines) across the UK.

With so much change in the air, what can membership organisations do to manage risks, seize opportunities to engage with members and ensure campaign work hits the spot? 

It’s times like this when the DTW Strategic Communications Model really comes into its own. It helps to refocus communication efforts when a curveball (like a certain snap election) throws things into disarray, using three streamlined steps: 

  1. Analyse the challenges
  2. Create targeted solutions
  3. Engage your audiences

The model is not a one-size-fits-all solution. It provides a solid foundation for strategic planning and to navigate unexpected challenges, whether it’s a potential shift in the government ministers you’re lobbying or England (or Scotland!) making it to the Euro finals on the same day as your annual conference. 

We think there are three crucial points to consider given the current context:

Sense the mood

Stay informed about the national agenda. The outcome of the general election or our teams’ performance in the Euros or Olympics will impact the national mood – which includes your members and key stakeholders. This could present opportunities to build on that bigger picture and take a new step forward in a different context.

Don’t forget your ‘why’

When national events disrupt your plans, be adaptable and agile but avoid doing things for the sake of it. Stay focussed on your objectives – the reasons why you are doing what you’re doing – and make sure that any new approaches align with your organisational goals. Whether you’re looking to gain new members, retain current ones or engage with government, the way you do it may change, but your end goal should stay the same. 

Keep members front of mind

When devising new strategies, ask yourself how they best serve your members. In the event of a new government, think about how you can align your members’ interests with the government’s agenda. Will your current messaging and activity continue to resonate with current and potential members? And do your plans enable member involvement and amplify their voices? 

This is all food for thought for membership organisations this summer. If you want to find out more about implementing the DTW Strategic Communications Model in your organisation’s activity, get in touch. Or register to join us for an in-depth session before the Memcom Summer Party where we’ll be looking at engaging with members and government in a post general election world.