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Strategic Digital Communications

Recent media crises in the corporate, consumer products and political milieus, among others, have demonstrated the importance of swift, effective reactions to shifting opinion and outright attacks on line. Such situations are frequently complicated by the interaction of traditional and social media. More important, organizations of all types weather on-line crises much more safely when they have well designed crisis management plans in place. The rise of digital media has greatly enhanced the key role of internal stakeholders (e.g. employees, volunteers, users) in shaping, for better or worse, an organization’s communications with outside stakeholders (e.g. media, taxpayers, shareholders). As a result, communication with, among, and by internal stakeholders is an essential component of an organization’s communication management. In addition, social media has given organizations an array of new tools for enhancing the recruitment, integration and retention of employees and volunteers.

Dates: Courses will begin in the 2014-2015 academic year
Fee: $995.00
Alumni and Current Students Fee:  $845.75

If you are interested in registering, please contact us.


Aligning digital communications with organizational strategies. Development and implementation of digital communication plans. Employee engagement, internal branding, policies and best practices in the use of social media in organizations. The use of social media tools for employee recruitment, handling information leaks, reputation and crisis management. Integration of traditional and social media relations.

Topics Covered

  • Digital communications and organizational strategy: alignment and support.
  • Policies on the use of social media in organizations – trends, legal issues and best practices
  • Social media and employee recruitment
  • The roles of employees, managers and other internal publics as ambassadors, creators of corporate culture and sources of information
  • Use of digital media in pro-active communications such as during restructuring, mergers or acquisitions
  • Leaks of confidential and proprietary information over the Internet – cases in causes, prevention and management
  • Issue tracking and reputation management using on-line tools
  • Online crisis communications and management – pro-active intervention and damage control
  • The evolving interaction and mutual influence of social and traditional public information media
  • Development and evaluation of digital media communication plans.

Other Requirements

Students are required to bring their laptops/notebooks/tablets to class.


Jeff Scott works at Canadian National Railway where he helps the company use digital communications, including social media, to engage with stakeholders. He also delivers training seminars to groups and individuals and is a regular guest lecturer at McGill University. Previously, Jeff worked as a consultant for NATIONAL Public Relations. While there he specialized in the development and implementation of digital strategies for businesses, governments and individuals.
Jeff holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English literature with first class honours from McGill University. He is @jeffscott on Twitter.

Contact Information

Telephone: 514-398-5454
E-mail: pd [dot] conted [at] mcgill [dot] ca