Essential Steps for a Strategic Public Relations Plan

According to Ronn Torossian, when a company wants to develop a strategic public relations plan, aside from doing its mandatory research, it needs to define a handful of core elements that the plan needs to include. There are the goals and the target audience that the company needs to define and identify, and then it needs to create key PR messages, measure the results of its campaigns, and more.

Goals

The first step in developing a strategic public relations plan is for a company to define the goals that it wants to reach with its public relations efforts. Knowing the results that the company needs to achieve are going to guide all of the other steps of the planning process for a public relations plan. That’s because knowing the goals helps companies figure out which audiences need to be targeted, how to target those audiences, as well as how to reach them to achieve success with public relations efforts.

Audience

Since the core of public relations is all about developing a positive relationship with a target audience of a company, the next step that a company needs to take is to define its target audience for the public relations campaign it wants to execute. This means that the company can’t simply target the general public, and needs to focus on specific people that are going to be interested in what the business has to offer and are willing to make a purchase from the company.

Messages

Once a company fully understands what it wants to achieve with a public relations campaign, and who it needs to target, it’s time to develop key public relations messages that are going to be used to inform, educate, and influence the target audience. Every single public relations message needs to be short and concise and compel them to take action. It’s best for companies to develop separate key PR messages for each goal they want to achieve, and each segment of their target audience. The best way to develop these key messages is through data and insights, because they can be used to differentiate, and even shape and support the key messages from a company in a way that the target audience is going to find relatable.

Results

The only way for a company to know that its public relations plan and the overall campaign have been successful is by measuring the results. That means that before a company can start implementing its public relations plan, it needs to establish key performance indicators (KPIs) so that the business can measure the performance of its public relations efforts. It’s incredibly important that companies measure the performance of their public relations campaign, just as they measure any other business initiative or strategy. There are many different ways that companies can measure performance, which is why it’s important to define the key performance indicators at the beginning, and keep an eye on them throughout the campaign, not just at the very end.

Ronn Torossian founded 5WPR.

Ronn Torossian

Ronn Torossian is the founder and Chairman of 5WPR, one of the largest independently-owned PR firms in the United States. With over 25 years of experience crafting and executing powerful narratives, Torossian is one of America’s most prolific and well-respected Public Relations professionals. Since founding 5WPR in 2003, he has led the company’s growth, overseeing more than 275 professionals in the company’s headquarters in midtown Manhattan. With clients spanning corporate, technology, consumer and crisis, in addition to digital marketing and public affairs capabilities, 5WPR is regularly recognized as an industry leader and has been named “PR Agency of the Year” by the American Business Awards on multiple occasions. Throughout his career, Torossian has worked with some of the world’s most visible companies, brands and organizations. His strategic, resourceful approach has been recognized with numerous awards including being named the Stevie American Business Awards 2020 Entrepreneur of the Year, the American Business Awards PR Executive of the Year, twice over, an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year semi-finalist, Metropolitan Magazine’s Most Influential New Yorker, a 2020 Top Crisis Communications Professional by Business Insider, and a recipient of Crain’s New York 2021 Most Notable in Marketing & PR. Torossian is known as one of the country’s foremost experts on crisis communications, and is called on to counsel blue chip companies, top business executives and entrepreneurs both in the United States and worldwide. Torossian has lectured on crisis PR at Harvard Business School, appears regularly on CNN & CNBC, is a contributing columnist for Forbes and the New York Observer, and has authored two editions of his book, “For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results With Game-Changing Public Relations,” which is an industry best-seller. A NYC native, Torossian lives in Manhattan with his children. He is a member of Young Presidents Organization (YPO), and active in numerous charities.

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