Department - Author 1

Communication Studies Department

Degree Name - Author 1

BA in Communication Studies



Primary Advisor

Michael Fahs


Strategic communications planning is a vital part of numerous successful and efficient organizations, yet it is often times an avoided topic of discussion in other organizations. It is common for businesses to see communication planning as a task that will only be touched upon once immediate, more important jobs are completed and attended to, yet thinking strategically provides a strong framework for businesses to thrive upon. Whether an organization has been in business for twenty years or is just beginning to erect the first office-building wall, strategic communications planning should be seen as an essential building block for success.

From my understanding of the importance of strategic communications planning, my scholarly purpose for this project will be to create an informative packet that will educate organizations, more specifically nonprofit organizations, on how to create a strategic communication plan to help better their business. For those organizations that already have an established strategic communications plan, I hope to provide them with credible data to assess how current and applicable their in-place communication plan is. The steps of communication planning truly encompass various areas of the communication discipline; therefore I will be able to include numerous terms, ideas and concepts that I have learned during my undergraduate studies at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

The chosen seven step strategic communications planning model by Patterson and Radtke, which was applied in this project, was first created in 1993. In the early 90’s Radtke, founder and first president of Radiant Communications, Inc. and first executive director of the Center for Strategic Communications, felt compelled to make a “workshop model” to help nonprofit executive coordinators and executives think more critically about how strategic communication could forward their mission.