Communications Body of Knowledge

Chamber communications professionals should demonstrate, in key area, a knowledge and understanding of the importance of:


  • Communications strategies as they relate to media, employees, members
  • Integrated communications strategies, which include marketing, advertising and sales
  • Message delivery channels
  • Written and oral communication skills
  • Counseling CEO, key organization enablers and enactors, and spokespersons
  • Legal and ethical issues of communication as related to investor relations, trademark/copyright, intellectual property, non-profit disclosure


  • Graphic standards development for an organization
  • Desktop publishing (advantages and disadvantages)
  • Layout and design (the elements of a good "look")
  • Image management for an organization
  • Creativity and graphical support for an organization's communications efforts
  • Management and direct organization newsletter creation, production, and publication


  • Strategies for publications management, including design, development, print production, digital imaging and printing, print buying, and delivery


  • Skills necessary to write a variety of copy, from ads to advisories, from backgrounders to fact sheets to press releases, from speechwriting to position paper writing
  • Effective editing
  • A command of the English language, including standard usage, grammar, punctuation, and spelling


  • Tele/video-conferencing
  • Web site management - structure, development, updating, technical considerations, including basic html
  • The use of, and issues surrounding, fax communication -- on-demand and broadcast - and e-mail communication
  • Computer skills -- word processing, desktop publishing, Internet, database management
  • Audio-visual presentations - video, slide, overhead transparencies, and on-line demonstrations

Media Relations

  • Building awareness of organization's activities to non-members, members, and community partners
  • Directing all media relations activities, including news conferences
  • Issues management
  • Relationship management with reporters, editors, and editorial boards
  • Developing media relations strategies
  • "Clippings" management
  • Media planning for print, broadcast, and electronic outlets
  • Spokesperson training
  • The intricacies of television and radio news and interview processes.
  • Counseling of staff and leaders regarding publicity (or lack of) on sensitive issues.

Department Management

  • Budget development and oversight
  • Project management and oversight (on time, on budget, complete and accurate)
  • Total Quality Management
  • Personnel management
  • Internal and external customer service issues
  • Management of competition with members
  • Bid and evaluation process management with regard to outsourcing projects to agencies
  • Management of freelancers, interns, temps, and volunteers


  • Principles of market assessment and research for analysis and outsourcing
  • Horizon scanning/trend watching and reporting
  • Integrated communications strategies and plan development
  • Advertising strategies and plan development
  • Best methods to market to various programs
  • Direct mail marketing
  • Event planning
  • Stakeholders and target audiences
  • Product development

Long Range Strategic Planning

  • Issues management
  • Principles of research and evaluation to analyze the outcomes of marketing, advertising, promotions/public relations activities
  • Development of a strategic plan for any of the following - organization image campaign, activities and event promotion, communicating activities e analysis of chamber's environment
  • Crisis communications -- plan development and implementation
  • Direct identification of community issues
  • Reinforcement of continual communication of consistent company message

Staff Relations

  • Board, member, and employee relations techniques and education
  • Working with other staff members and departments (as contributors or mentors)
  • Team development
  • Meeting coordination