Communications Plans, Portfolio

Elder Care Communications Plan

Communications Plan Template

Elder Care Alert Canada

Situation Analysis/ Problem

Many new companies are entering the elder care emergency medical market and creating products like ours.  But they are not performing anything like us.  They’re cheating customers, providing bad services, ripping off old people.  This behaviour has attracted bad media attention and we’re being lumped in with everyone.  The value of our stock has dropped slightly.

Problem: Need to promote ECAC’s success, honesty and integrity.  Increase consumer trust and confidence.

 

SWOT

Strengths

  • In business 10 years
  • Received awards and commendations
  • Saved lives
  • Quick and personable services provided by ECAC
  • Reported $3.3 million in assets in 2017

Weakness

  • Being included in negative press surrounding competitions’ poor behaviour/ service
  • Value of stock has dropped slightly due to negative industry press

Opportunities

  • They have a solid reputation
  • No major complaints
  • Working on ways to improve products and services

Threats

  • Competition’s reputations could drag down ECAC’s

 

PEST

Political

  • Legislation

Economic

  • Many seniors are a fixed income. This product and service needs to be affordable for them

Socio-cultural

  • People are living longer and will need elder care as they age
  • Seniors want to stay in their homes and be safe

Technological

  • Other companies are developing technology to compete

 

Research

We need to research the following:

  • benefits of our products/ services
  • stats on number of seniors living alone in Canada
  • stats on how many customers we currently work with, and how many we have worked with in the past
  • how many lives have we saved and other relevant stats
  • compile positive media stories in our history

 

Mostly secondary research but could do some primary research by talking to our satisfied customers to get testimonials via focus groups and interviews.

 

Stakeholders/Publics

Seniors (current and future consumers)

ECAC employees

Competition

Media

Ranking:

  1. Consumers- they keep us in business. They need to work with a trustworthy company.  They want this type of care and to feel safe in their homes.
  2. Media- they can help spread our messages and we can distance ourselves from the competition. They are always looking for human interest stories.  This is content they need.
  3. Employees of ECAC- they know the mission, vision and values of our company and can act as unofficial spokespeople. Sales people can potentially increase sales by spreading positive messages to their clients.

 

Research methods needed to understand stakeholders

We can draw on our own up to date data of our customers’ needs and wants.

Do some quick phone interviews with some recent customers to get some fresh feedback and soundbites.

 

Goal

Increase consumer trust and confidence.

 

Objectives

To increase positive media coverage about our company by 70% within 60 days.

Interview 10 current customers to compile 10 positive feedback comments for press materials within seven days.

Get 10 positive customer testimonials within seven days to use in media relations strategy.

To achieve a score of eight out of 10 on a customer satisfaction survey we will perform on 50 current customers within the next seven days.

At least 80% of employees feel they have the tools they need to confidently deliver our values to potential and new customers within two weeks.

To increase comprehension by consumers of ECAC’s key messages by 70% within 30 days.

Execute five community bbq’s in the next two months for seniors in our five biggest markets in Canada to increase interest in ECAC’s products and services.

 

Strategies

We are using proactive strategies such as media relations, consumer relations, community relations and internal communications.  These will help us cover our key audiences.  We’re getting ahead of any negative press in case it becomes a bigger issue in the media.

 

Key Messages

ECAC cares about its customers.

 

ECAC has saved over 100 lives in the past 10 years with our best in class products and service.

 

ECAC allows older citizens to safely live alone with the assurance that they can receive assistance immediately if there is a medical emergency.

 

Tactics

  • Write news release, backgrounders, Q&A, fact sheets
  • Pitch key media (print and tv) to interview spokesperson and 2 of our customers
  • Media train the customers and the spokesperson
  • Develop fact sheet with key messages for employees
  • Schedule two, one-hour training sessions for employees to attend and get briefed on their materials. They only have to attend one session.
  • Put the materials on the company intranet for everyone to read and sign off that they read it
  • Ask Sales team for names of 20 recent customers we can interview.
  • Ask these customers for testimonials.
  • Survey 50 customers for positive feedback on ECAC product/service.
  • Do a Canada wide customer survey of 500 people
  • Plan and execute 5 community bbq’s in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton. Work with local reps to invite community and coordinate logistics. Create an invitation they can use to invite people.  We will provide budgets for food, signage, flyers, posters and venue rental.

Timing

Critical Path and GANTT

Budget

Don’t forget taxes and assigning a contingency

Evaluation

To increase positive media coverage about our company by 70% within 60 days.- use content analysis

Interview 10 current customers to compile positive feedback for press materials within seven days.  – we received 10 positive feedbacks from customers we interviewed.

Get 10 positive customer testimonials within seven days to use in media relations strategy.- we received 10 positive testimonials from the 10 clients we interviewed.

To achieve a score of eight out of 10 on a customer satisfaction survey we will perform on 50 current customers within the next seven days.- average score was 8.5/10 on our customer satisfaction survey.

At least 80% of employees feel they have the tools they need to confidently deliver our values to potential and new customers within two weeks.  – online survey to employees via intranet and 85% answered confidently

To increase comprehension by consumers of ECAC’s key messages by 70% within 30 days. – surveyed 50 customers via phone interview.

Execute five community bbq’s in the next two months for seniors in our five biggest markets in Canada to increase interest in ECAC’s products and services.  – we ran 5 events and handed out customer comment cards before they left so we could gather info on customer recall of products and services.

 

 

 

 

Communications Plans, Portfolio

Case Study: Carnival Cruise Lines

white cruise ship on blue body of water during daytime
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

SUBMITTED BY HEATHER BODAJLA

FRIDAY MAY 11TH, 2018

CDPR100 INTENSIVE

CARNIVAL CRUISE LINES COMMUNICATION PLAN

 

SITUATION ANALYSIS

The fire and subsequent poor emergency contingency plans aboard the cruise ship Splendor have lead to damage of Carnival Cruise Lines’ reputation.  Among the issues on the ship, there was a lack of toilet facilities for 16 hours, food had to be flown in from the U.S. Navy, and there was no air conditioning.  Despite this unfortunate incident, the company is still the largest cruise line in the world and has more passengers than the competition.

SWOT ANALYSIS

Strengths

Carnival is the largest cruise line in the world.

They have been in business over 35 years.

Carnival is a flagship brand and accounts for 19 per cent of Carnival Corporation’s capacity.

They have more passengers than any other cruise line.

Carnival’s ships are inspected by the U.S. Coast Guard four times a year to ensure they are safe.

Weaknesses

Common cruise issues that aren’t unique to Carnival include tilting due to rough seas, Norovirus outbreaks, fire, and pirates.

Poor emergency management contingency plans as demonstrated during the fire on the Splendor.  Since this fire, the plans have been overhauled and greatly improved with the help of an internal investigation and an outside auditor.

The Splendor was one of the pinnacle ships in the fleet so it was damaging to the brand when this happened.

Opportunities

Growing industry (exceptional value proposition, wide appeal, low market penetration, positive guest demographics, high guest satisfaction rates).

Admit they had a poor emergency response plan and demonstrate how they are improving it going forward.

Threats

The industry competes for discretionary dollars with other vacation types. Vacation spending is a third priority after savings and living expenses.  In tough economic times, this becomes a threat to Carnival’s business.  Carnival can offer tiered pricing, early booking discounts, and group rates to make their vacations more accessible and competitive.

There is a potential loss of customer trust due to the issue on the Splendor.  Previous passengers may never travel with them again.  Future passengers may not choose Carnival.

In tough economic times when business is slower, Carnival needs to figure out what else they can do with the ships to make money.

Gaps in emergency plans may happen again in the future- unless they can implement their new safety strategy

GOAL

To be the number one recommended cruise line by industry experts

OBJECTIVES

  1. By end of year 2012, increase Carnival’s ranking to number one among cruise travel agents.
  1. Become the number one cruise line on travelandleisure.com and cruisecritic.com in 2012.

 

  1. Empower 100 of Carnival’s most frequent cruisers to become influencers by June 2013. Having influencers will help boost the reputation of the brand amongst potential customers.

AUDIENCES

1.Travel agents- seven out of 10 passengers will book through a travel agent.

  1. The editors of travelandleisure.com, cruisecritic.com and key cruise bloggers.
  2. Frequent Carnival cruisers with heavy social media presence.

 STRATEGIES

We will work with our advertising agency to launch a campaign to create awareness among travel agents and agencies about Carnival’s amazing fleet and cruising experiences.

Run a traditional media campaign in leading travel industry magazines to reach the travel agents.

Work with our marketing agency to launch a social media campaign on Instagram and Facebook targeting people who follow cruise lines or search for them.

Leverage John Heald’s blog and establish or re-establish relationships with the top four bloggers in the industry.

TACTICS

FAM Tours

Organize and execute three FAM tours (familiarization tours) for top cruise agents, key media and premier bloggers starting in January 2012.

Advertising

The advertising agency will run a year- long campaign geared to agents and agencies beginning in January 2011.

Media Relations

Issue news releases and backgrounders.  Pitch phone interviews between travel journalists at industry publications and key Carnival spokespeople.  Update media/ press section on Carnival corporate website.  These media relations duties are to be completed by March 2011.

Email Blasts and Snail Mail

Target agents who work at cruise ship centers to get 10 per cent more of them accredited with our cruise line through email blasts and postal mailing.  Offer a discount on the accreditation if it’s acquired within the current calendar year.  Begin this campaign in January 2012 after the first FAM tour.

Social Media

Buy ads on Facebook, Instagram and top five key blogs to reach Carnival’s frequent cruisers.  These ads will last for four months beginning in January 2011.  We will repeat the campaign for the same four months in 2012 and 2013 until we acquire 100 effective influencers.

KEY MESSAGES

These key messages are recommended for use in all communications initiatives.

  1. Carnival Cruise Lines is committed to creating the best cruise experience for their passengers, whether it is their first cruise, or their 20th.

 

  1. Carnival Cruise Lines is continuously improving its onboard experiences and upgrading the fleet to ensure their passengers have the safest and most fun experience on its ships.

 

  1. We encourage all current and future passengers to contact Carnival Cruise Lines if they have any questions, comments or concerns.

 

CRITICAL PATH AND RESOURCES

FAM Tour Planning

START DEADLINE ACTION RESPONSIBILITY
9/1/11 9/2/11 Develop a list of the top 10 cruise travel agents and their agency general managers in the 10 major markets. Identify 5 key bloggers and 10 travel journalists to invite on the trip Heather B
9/2/11 9/4/11 Approve invite list Director
9/5/11 9/6/11 Book 72 rooms on the Splendor in Jan, Feb and March for a 4 day cruise out of Miami Heather B
9/7/11 9/9/11 Arrange 2 day trips in Bahamas for invitees Heather B
9/7/11 9/9/11 Set up tours of the ship with cruise director and meet and greet with Captain for each trip Heather B
9/10/11 9/15/11 Create invitations, itinerary, gather promo material for mailing Assistant
9/17/11 9/17/11 Send out invitations, itinerary and promotional material Heather B
9/22/11 10/15/11 Coordinate RSVP list in excel file Assistant
12/01/11 12/05/11 Mail out pre-trip package to invitees on January trip with fun items such as Carnival branded sunscreen, hats and flip flops along with final instructions/itinerary for the trip Heather B
12/20/11 12/20/11 Arrange welcome package in rooms for each guest upon arrival. Set up Sign and Sail passes for each guest with drinks and specialty restaurant access already loaded. Heather B
01/15/12 01/19/12 First FAM trip sets sail
01/18/12 01/18/12 Conduct a focus group on the ship with the invitees HB coordinate with marketing agency and an on-board representative

 

 

Email Blasts and Snail Mail

START DEADLINE ACTION RESPONSIBILITY
01/05/12 01/10/12 Compile a list of cruise travel agents who haven’t been accredited with Carnival yet Assistant
01/12/12 01/12/12 Write an email blast targeting these agents Heather B
01/12/12 01/12/12 Write a pitch letter inviting them to become accredited and outlining the steps they need to complete Heather B
01/13/12 01/15/12 Email and pitch letter approvals Director
01/16/12 01/23/12 Get the mailing printed, stuffed and stamped Assistant
01/24/12 01/24/12 Send out mailing. Send out email blast Heather B

 

Social Media Buy

START DEADLINE ACTION RESPONSIBILITY
01/02/11 01/02/11 Buy ad time on Facebook to last from Jan 10th – April 30th Agency
01/02/11 01/02/11 Buy ad time on Instagram to last from Jan 10th – April 30th Agency
01/02/11 01/02/11 Buy ad space on Cruise Critic, Cruise Fever, Cruise Industry News, Cruise Law News and Cruise Hive (Agarwal, 2018) to last from Jan 10th – April 30th Agency
01/03/11 01/07/11 Create content for the social ads Agency
01/08/11 01/08/11 Approve the content Heather B
Repeat for 2012 and 2013 on same timelines

 

BUDGET

ITEM COST TIMING
FAM Trips    
216 rooms aboard Horizon $195,000 Jan/Feb/Mar 2012
2 Day Trips off the ship $45,000 Jan/Feb/Mar 2012
Invitations, promo material, mailing costs for initial mailing $5,000 09/10/11
Pre-trip package and mailing costs $7,500 12/01/11
In-room welcome packages, Sign and Sail cards $15,000 Jan/Feb/Mar 2012
Focus groups $10,000 Jan/Feb/Mar 2012
SUBTOTAL $277,500
Email Blast and Snail Mail    
Mail printing, stuffing, postage $5,000 01/16/12
SUBTOTAL $5,000
Social Media Buy (2012)    
Facebook $5,000 01/10/12-04/30/12
Instagram $5,000 01/10/12-04/30/12
5 blogs $5,000 01/10/12-04/30/12
SUBTOTAL $15,000
Evaluation Costs
See focus groups above
Marketing agency social media KPI report $5,000
TOTAL COST OF COMMUNICATIONS PLAN $302,500

EVALUATION

To evaluate the effectiveness of the FAM trips, Carnival will conduct focus groups before the cruise returns home.  A representative from the marketing agency will go on each trip to conduct the sessions and compile the findings into a report.

We can determine the success of the email and mail campaigns by running a report at the end of 2012 to see if the number of accredited travel agents has increased by 10%.

Midway through 2012, we will conduct a survey of the key travel agents in major metropolitan cities to see if they feel Carnival is the #1 cruise line in the world.  We will use the findings to see if we are on the right track to regaining the #1 title.

The marketing agency will provide influence metrics (follower counts, Klout scores) and demographic information about who our key influencers are.  We will also find out how we compare to our competition. (Deering Davis, 2012)

CONCLUSION (POST-ANALYSIS)

This plan was successful when Carnival regained the #1 cruise line in America title in 2012.  We attacked this challenge by targeting 3 groups of important stakeholders: travel agents, cruise bloggers and frequent Carnival cruisers who have a high social media presence.

We coordinated 3 FAM trips for top cruise agents and their agency owners as well as top cruise bloggers and travel industry media.  These were essential to authenticate the experience and fun times available on our ships.

By focusing on advertising to travel agents in the cruise industry, we stayed top of mind.  We also leveraged the travel media and key cruise bloggers to create buzz about new ship launches, destinations and partnerships.

We executed an effective email blast and mailing campaign to target travel agents in major metropolitan cities who were not yet accredited with Carnival Cruise Lines.  By increasing accreditation membership by 10%, we created more awareness of Carnival among the cruising public, which will lead to an increase in bookings.

Our social media campaign was the most exciting program for us because we’ve never used this method.  Influencers are so important to many organizations because of their authenticity and reach and we were able to leverage our frequent Carnival cruisers to turn them into influencers for our brand.

By executing all of these plans successfully, we were able to regain our #1 ranking in the cruise industry by the end of 2012.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References

Agarwal, A. (2018). Top 50 cruise blogs and websites to follow in 2018. Retrieved from https://blog.feedspot.com/cruise_blogs/

 

Deering Davis Ph.D., J. (2012). The 5 easy steps to measure your social media campaigns. Retrieved from https://blog.kissmetrics.com/social-media-measurement/