We all follow the same trends. The macro facts we tell ourselves aren’t unique. Every one of our competitors has the same information.

What really matters is how people — our audiences — are changing. How do we build new models and execute strategies that fundamentally change how we reach people, in five seconds or less? How do we ensure that our brands and messaging are relevant, in the language our customers, employees and constituents speak?

Choose to learn differently! Attend the 2017 Strategic Summit and learn strategies to ensure your story is well-told wherever your audience finds it.

Summit Highlights

Gain Insights • Learn New Strategies • Interact with Leaders • Network

TAP EXPERTISE FROM DIVERSE SECTORS: Including CCOs from leading companies and NGOs, senior military officers and government communicators

EXPECT HIGH-QUALITY CONTENT: Delegates rate speakers and panelists 4.30/5.00 overall, with many plenary sessions receiving near-perfect scores

MAKE BUSINESS CONTACTS: A collegial atmosphere enables you to build career-enhancing relationships with people you normally would not meet

IDENTIFY TRENDS AND HOW THEY’RE IMPLEMENTED: Think ‘three years out’ at @StratCommSummit with forward-looking strategies and ‘how-to’ tactics

INTERACT AND ENGAGE: A hallmark of this Summit is the time allowed for Q&A with speakers and dialogue among attendees

RECEIVE EXCELLENT VALUE: Access 18+ hours of educational and keynote sessions, breakfasts, luncheons, and exclusive interactive events

This Strategic Summit is designed for business, public sector and military communications directors and public affairs officers; information operations officers; corporate communications and public relations professionals; and executives from corporations, government agencies, the Department of Defense and military branches, the intelligence community, universities and NGOs with responsibilities in the following areas:  
Corporate Communications Digital and Social Media Information Operations Public Relations Public Affairs Content Editing Media Relations Marketing Data Analytics Public Policy Strategic Alliances
Intelligence and Analysis Product and Brand Management Community Relations Employee Communications Government Affairs The program also is of interest to: Consultants Marketing Services Providers Association Managers Executive Recruiters Civic Organizations

No other conference offers such a diverse group of high-level speakers and attendees from corporations, the military, government and NGOs. The Strategic Summit is organized annually by the nonprofit Strategic Communications Leadership Initiative in partnership with ExL Events and with support from the Pentagon and various military branches as well as private sector sponsors.

The objectives are twofold: to identify strategies that enhance engagement and to share methods to increase the value and improve the practice of strategic communications in corporations, the military and government entities. The value of the National Summit on Strategic Communications is best illustrated by data from people who have attended. In 2015 and again in 2016, more than 90% of attendees who submitted evaluations said the Strategic Summit “fully” met their conference expectations.

The forward-looking agenda and theme for the eighth consecutive Strategic Summit is Live and Work Ahead of the Curve. The program will address top challenges faced by chief communications and public affairs officers in this volatile and rapidly-changing environment, including a new president in the USA.

Topics will include current case studies where data and analytics are used effectively to determine strategic direction; processes for developing agile communication campaigns that introduce content in minutes or hours after interest is detected; and ways to enhance the customer experience with our brands.

WHAT PEOPLE SAY about attending the Strategic Summit

Agenda At-a-Glance

Great leaders see opportunities. They never see barriers; they visualize solutions.Leaders at the @StratComms17 opening plenary sessions will have you think differently, evolve your models for engagement and commit yourself to understanding how the marketplace is truly changing.


Great leaders see opportunities. They never see barriers; they visualize solutions. Leaders at the #StratComms17 opening plenary sessions will have you think differently, evolve your models for engagement and commit yourself to understanding how the marketplace is truly changing.


When we face reality, we tend to see the world in today’s terms. In “Strat Talks” lasting 10 minutes each, these colleagues will push you to look around corners and open your minds to how reality will change before our eyes.


Engage with peers from any of 15 countries over lunch in Hilton’s Crystal Ballroom.


We need to always put ourselves in the minds of the customer — as if we were them. Companies represented in the afternoon session use creative strategies that set them apart from competitors and enable them to maximize the effectiveness of their communication to consumers. Attend and find best practices!


The macro facts we like to tell ourselves aren’t unique. Every one of our competitors have the same information! Habits rebel against new ideas that could change how we conduct business. This Strategic Summit session offers innovative strategies that re-define how we shape our actions and the rest of our audience!


Drinks in the Commonwealth Foyer with “interesting people you otherwise would not meet!”


So much for the status quo! Continuous change is the new norm in life and business. Fortunately, in today’s highly disruptive world, we can adapt by studying problems, brainstorming solutions, then steadily trying and improving as we go. After a morning-long series of ‘Strat Talks’, case studies and discussions, you will see the world differently.
  • Meet corporate, military and government organizations that create advantages by consistently experimenting with and learning from new ideas.
  • See how well-structured communication teams with strong leadership, appropriate skills and an aligned internal culture, achieve great things.
  • Learn how innovation, engagement and social media communications will radically reshape the marketplace in the next five years.


Take a break and talk with colleagues over lunch in Hilton’s Crystal Ballroom.


Share ideas. Clarify concepts. Network. Back by popular demand, these roundtables are a highlight of the annual Strategic Summits. Expanded in 2017 to include more topics and moderators, these interactive sessions enable you to:
  • Learn from inspiring talks by colleagues and peers
  • Immerse yourself in interactive sessions with academic experts
  • Share experiences and gain valuable insights and ideas
  • Select topics and discussions across multiple innovation themes


Digital communication is “real life,” and organizations that align their digital communication with what their audiences care about can develop agile and effective campaigns. Are you gathering and sorting data to find the levers that will transform the way people interact with you or buy online? If you know what your audience is doing and where, and become expert at sharing the right story with them at the right time, buyers and sellers both will benefit.


This popular, high-energy closing session succinctly identifies major takeaways from the two-day Strategic Summit. This facilitated session identifies how you can keep your eye on achieving long-term success.

2017 Featured Speakers - Watch this site for new faculty being added weekly!

Brad Parscale

Former Digital Director, DONALD J. TRUMP FOR PRESIDENT, INC.

Jennifer R. Farmer

Managing Director of Communications, PICO National Network

Leigh Horner

Vice President, Corporate Communications, THE HERSHEY COMPANY

Major General Malcolm B. Frost

Chief of Public Affairs, U.S. ARMY

See all speakers

2017 Sponsors and Supporting Partners

Event Pricing

Standard Rate

— Register after March 24, 2017 —

Full-Time Academic/Government Rate – Conference Only

Corporate Rate – Conference Only

Recent Blog Posts


Reputation risk is the largest, scariest and least manageable of all operational risks. Boards of many large companies have little confidence that their executives are even aware of what major reputation flare-up is around the corner (let alone hidden deep in social


Political advisor, communications strategist and producer Mark McKinnon is the co-creator and co-executive producer of Showtime’s The Circus: Inside the Greatest Political Show on Earth. Mark was chief media advisor to five successful presidential primary and general election campaigns. Anticipating his presentation