Communication Degree & The Role of Corporate Communications

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corporate communications employee on phone

Communication is one of the most — if not the most important function of any business.

It allows businesses to build their reputations, establish market positions, and create seamless workflows for their employees. However, they can only achieve this with the help of communication professionals.

MANCOSA offers a comprehensive communication degree, the Bachelor of Commerce in Corporate Communication that’ll teach you everything you need to know about effective communication in the workplace. With it, you’ll be equipped to get a high-paying job within organisations’ communication departments.

This article will explain corporate communication, what it involves, and what jobs you can get with a corporate communication degree.

What is Corporate Communication?

Corporate communication is a set of methods companies use to communicate with their stakeholders. These include:

  • Management communication
  • Marketing communication
  • Organisational communication

These different branches are used to communicate with internal stakeholders, such as employees and managers, and external stakeholders, such as customers and investors.

There are multiple functions to corporate communication, but it’s mainly used to communicate the company’s goals, values, and activities.

This type of communication can come through various channels, including, but not limited to:

  • Reports
  • Website copy
  • Emails
  • Interviews
  • Press conferences
  • Videos
  • Branding materials
  • Internal meetings
  • And many more

Without corporate communication, companies risk having unproductive, negative, and confused employees. They also have no way of building meaningful and strong customer relationships.

The functions of Corporate Communication

In most companies, the communication department handles a wide range of communication activities or functions. These include:

1. Media and public relations

This is how companies communicate with the general public.

This includes organising news conferences, having interviews, doing product launches, distributing press releases, and creating marketing materials, such as banners, billboards, etc.

The main goal of public relations is to build the company’s reputation and establish it as an authority within its industry.

As part of this function, the communication team needs to keep an eye on mentions of their company, products, and essential people, such as stakeholders, in the news.

They also need to devise a plan to address unfavourable coverage and misinformation in the media.

2. Marketing and customer communications

While marketing and communication are two different departments, the lines have begun to blur over the years. Now, these departments collaborate since communication will significantly affect marketing messages and vice versa.

This function involves communicating with and marketing to customers through:

  • Marketing emails
  • Social media copy
  • Newsletters
  • YouTube videos
  • Podcasts
  • Flyers
  • And more

3. Crisis communication

This refers to a company’s message in the face of a crisis when something unanticipated happens that could potentially damage its reputation.

If an event like this occurs, it’s the communication team’s job to devise a strategy to eliminate or lessen the possible damage. This includes:

  • Advising company spokespersons on what to say when speaking to the public
  • Organising interviews where company representatives can talk about the issue at hand
  • Communicating with attorneys and government regulators if necessary

The nature of the “crisis” will differ based on the type of organisation. It can be anything from a work accident to side effects as a result of faulty products and more.

4. Internal communication

This involves communication inside the organisation with employees, managers, etc. This includes:

  • Internal emails and memos advertising corporate events and meetings
  • Employee learning resources, such as handbooks
  • Staff brainstorming and training sessions
  • Managing internal blogs

Effective internal communication can help businesses increase their productivity and output. According to a 2012 survey conducted by Mckinsey, internal communication and collaboration can increase productivity by 25%–35%.

This part of the corporate communication strategy is often handled by the communications team in collaboration with the human resource department.

The role of the Corporate Communication Specialist

Corporate communications specialists propel a brand’s image through consistent communication. To produce effective internal and external strategies, they need to have the following skills:

  • Writing skills: So they can write clear copy in several formats, including, but not limited to, blog posts, website copy, social media posts, press releases, and more.
  • Presentation skills: So they can interact with the public, members of the media, and employees with ease. According to GMAC’s Corporate Recruiters Survey, presentation skills are among the top five skills employers look for when hiring workers.
  • Research skills: So they can make sure their messaging is factual and clear before releasing it to the public.
  • Critical thinking skills: So they can act with a clear mind in stressful situations and develop effective strategies amid chaos.
  • Technical skills: So they can implement technology trends, such as chatbots, virtual reality, and blockchains, into their strategies for better customer experiences.

Here are some of the primary duties undertaken by communication specialists:

  • Develop and implement communication campaigns
  • Define key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure the success of campaigns
  • Create internal communication strategies to ensure happy and loyal employees
  • Represent the company at press conferences and events
  • Oversee the creation of communication and marketing materials to ensure that it’s consistent with the company’s brand
  • Reach out to influencers and the media to build the company’s reputation

Benefits of a Corporate Communication degree

A corporate communication degree will equip you with the transferable skills that you need to attain several high-paying positions at companies within varying industries.

These include positions like content creator, communication specialist, public relations specialist, marketing coordinator, editor, and many more.

Learn more about all the skills you’ll learn by heading over to our Bachelor of Commerce in Corporate Communication page.

Study a Bachelor of Communication with MANCOSA

If you like communicating with others and the thought of talking to the media and press excites you, a career in communications might be ideal for you.

Aside from the Bachelor of Commerce in Corporate Communication, you can also consider a career in marketing. Have a look at our Bachelor of Commerce in Digital Marketing and our Higher Certificate in Social Media and Communication.

Author: Thandokuhle Mkhize (Team Leader | MANCOSA)