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Top 10 tips to consider when creating your PR Strategy

Public Relations (PR) is a vital component of any organisation's success. It helps build and maintain a positive image, foster relationships with stakeholders, and manage the communication flow between the organisation and the public.

A strong PR strategy should not only focus on day-to-day communication but also include a well-thought-out crisis management plan to handle unexpected challenges effectively.

Read our guide on how to create a comprehensive PR strategy with an emphasis on crisis management:

1. Understanding the Basics of PR:

Before diving into the development of your PR strategy, it's crucial to grasp the fundamental concepts of PR:

  • Purpose: PR aims to establish and maintain a positive image, reputation, and relationship between an organisation and its public, which include customers, employees, investors, media, and the community.

  • Goals: Determine the objectives of your PR efforts, such as improving brand visibility, enhancing credibility, managing crises, or promoting specific products or services.

  • Target Audience: Identify your key stakeholders and tailor your messaging to resonate with their interests and concerns.

2. Conduct a PR Audit:

Begin your PR strategy by assessing your current PR efforts. This involves:

  • Reviewing past PR campaigns and their outcomes.

  • Analysing your organization's current public image and reputation.

  • Evaluating your competitors' PR strategies.

3. Define Your PR Objectives:

Set clear and measurable PR objectives that align with your organisation's overall goals. These objectives should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART). Examples include:

  • Increase media coverage by 20% in the next six months.

  • Improve online reputation by maintaining a 4-star rating or higher on review platforms.

  • Respond to crisis situations within one hour of identification.

4. Target Audience Segmentation:

Segment your target audience into distinct groups based on demographics, interests, and behaviour. Tailor your messaging and tactics to each segment to ensure maximum impact.

5. Message Development:

Craft compelling and consistent key messages that reflect your organisation's values and goals. Messages should resonate with your target audience and align with your objectives. Create a crisis-specific messaging framework that includes pre-approved statements for various scenarios.

6. Choose PR Tactics:

Select the most appropriate PR tactics to achieve your objectives. Common tactics include:

  • Media Relations: Build relationships with journalists and bloggers to secure media coverage.

  • Content Creation: Develop high-quality content such as press releases, articles, blog posts, and social media updates.

  • Social Media Management: Maintain an active and engaging presence on relevant social media platforms.

  • Events and Sponsorships: Participate in or host events that align with your brand.

  • Influencer Partnerships: Collaborate with industry influencers to promote your message.

  • Crisis Management: Develop a comprehensive crisis communication plan.

7. Crisis Management Plan:

A crucial aspect of your PR strategy is a well-prepared crisis management plan. It should include the following steps:

  • Identify Potential Crises: Anticipate potential crises based on industry trends, historical data, and risk assessments.

  • Establish a Crisis Team: Assemble a team responsible for managing and responding to crises. This team should include spokespersons, legal advisors, and PR professionals.

  • Create a Communication Protocol: Define the process for identifying, evaluating, and responding to crises. Assign specific roles and responsibilities to team members.

  • Prepare Holding Statements: Develop holding statements for common crisis scenarios. These statements should be concise and provide basic information while avoiding speculation.

  • Media Training: Ensure that your spokespersons are trained to handle media inquiries during a crisis, staying on message and conveying empathy and competence.

  • Monitor and Respond: Continuously monitor news and social media for potential crises. Act swiftly when a crisis occurs, following your communication protocol.

  • Post-Crisis Analysis: After a crisis is resolved, conduct a thorough review to identify lessons learned and areas for improvement in your crisis management plan.

8. Budget and Resources:

Allocate sufficient budget and resources to implement your PR strategy effectively. This includes expenses for media outreach, content creation, crisis management tools, and training.

9. Implementation and Evaluation:

Execute your PR strategy, closely monitor its progress, and make adjustments as needed. Regularly measure the effectiveness of your efforts using key performance indicators (KPIs) tied to your objectives.

10. Continuous Improvement:

PR is an evolving field, so it's essential to adapt to changing circumstances. Continuously assess your strategy and update it as necessary to stay ahead of emerging trends and challenges. Look to investing in Social Media monitoring software to determine brand sentiment and how you could potentially predict poor public relations and be proactive in communication addressing public concern.

Remember that a strong PR strategy is an ongoing process. By proactively managing your organisation's image and being well-prepared for crises, you can build and maintain a positive reputation that fosters trust and loyalty among your stakeholders.


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