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A Review of Strategic Communications Defined and Described Online

  • From the U.S. Department of Defense: Strategic Communication: Focused United States Government efforts to understand and engage key audiences to create, strengthen, or preserve conditions favorable for the advancement of United States Government interests, policies, and objectives through the use of coordinated programs, plans, themes, messages, and products synchronized with the actions of all instruments of national power. Joint Publication 1-02: "Department of Defense Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms," Washington D.C., 12 April 2001 (as amended through 17 March 2009) as cited in Wikipedia.

  • From Wikipedia: Strategic communication can mean either communicating a concept, a process, or data that satisfies a long term strategic goal of an organization by allowing facilitation of advanced planning, or communicating over long distances usually using international telecommunications or dedicated global network assets to coordinate actions and activities of operationally significant commercial, non-commercial and military business or combat and logistic subunits. It can also mean the related function within an organization, which handles internal and external communication processes. Strategic communication can also be used for political warfare.

  • From  The term “strategic communications” has become popular over the last two decades. It means infusing communications efforts with an agenda and a master plan. Typically, that master plan involves promoting the brand of an organization, urging people to do specific actions, or advocating particular legislation. It can refer to both a process, and to a specific job title.

  • From Texas Christian University: Students majoring in strategic communication learn the theories and methods of advertising, public relations and new media to meet the strategic goals of organizations. Students learn to conduct research; write and create content for print, broadcast, online and mobile platforms; design; choose channels to place the message; and evaluate effectiveness.

  • From Georgetown University: The term “strategic communications” means infusing communications efforts with an agenda and a master plan. Typically, that master plan involves promoting the brand of an organization, urging people to do specific actions, or advocating particular legislation.  It can refer to both a process, and to a specific job title.

  • From Taylor and Francis Online: International Journal of Strategic Communication, Volume 1, Issue 1, 2007: Defining Strategic Communication: The purposeful use of communication by an organization to fulfill its mission. Six relevant disciplines are involved in the development, implementation, and assessment of communications by organizations: management, marketing, public relations, technical communication, political communication, and information/social marketing campaigns.

  • From Oxford Bibliographies:  Strategic communication is a term used to denote the higher-level concerns behind communicative efforts by organizations to advance organizational mission. It is, therefore, inherently multidisciplinary as work in this area draws on literature from a wide array of other subfields, including public relations, marketing, advertising, and management.

  • From the C3/SC3 Comprehensive Centers at the University of Oklahoma KnowledgeBase: Strategic Communication reframes the communication process of an SEA as a critical strategy to accomplish agency priorities, major initiatives, and strategic goals.

  • From the Building State Capacity and Productivity Center (BSCP): To mobilize the many elements required to transform education, the SEA must connect their work internally across multiple divisions and gain support from key external stakeholders to advance any major reform agenda. Subsequently, many SEAs have created new communications divisions or positions to better leverage communication as an important administrative strategy.   Communication is a critical component to help SEAs create system-wide clarity and coherence, and to proactively manage messages to gain stakeholder support. Right now, an opportunity exists to address the communication challenges SEAs are facing by employing strategic communications—a term that refers to developing and implementing an entire systemic communications process created to achieve one or more long-term strategic goals.

  • From Miami University: Strategic Communication is the study of how individuals and organizations use communication and media to negotiate their role in highly mediated societies.  Public relations is a central aspect of strategic communications and involves the study of how organizations influence opinions and the behavior of key publics (e.g., employees, consumers, government, community, media) and how they try to respond and adapt to the concerns of these publics.

  • From the Strategic Communications Leadership Initiative (SCLI): The Strategic Communications Leadership Initiative provides thought leadership and sets standards for practicing strategic communications, thereby advancing the profession. The SCLI identifies and endorses best practices to enhance engagement and share methods to increase the effectiveness and value of strategic communications. They do this by encouraging diverse thinking, fostering learning and achieving synergy of ideas and innovation among people and across organizations. The SCLI engages an active volunteer Board of Advisors, advises on the program content at a National Summit on Strategic Communications, and conducts interactive programs, seminars and training to share knowledge and expertise within the professional community.