PR planning and improvisation

#SillySeasonPR #4

PR planning and improvisation

Planning your PR enables you to make the best of available opportunities.

You know what’s happening in your business, your schedule for launching new products or services and the dates of events you’ll be hosting or attending. Use all this to plan your PR activity.

When do you need to get news to publications about your product launch? What can you say about an event you’re organising? What photos or video can you create in advance to make the biggest impact?

Planning your PR early on gives you the time to come up with ideas and ensures you contact journalists before their deadlines. It also gives you the time to get all the information together, get quotes from key people, prepare images and other material, so your PR is packed with interest.

Many businesses leave it too late and send out press releases after the deadline and often after the event, when it’s old news. This material tends to be hurried, incomplete and ineffective. Often, it’s a waste of time and money.

Do it properly if you’re going to do it at all.

PR planning and improvisation

Expect the unexpected

Even when you’ve planned everything down to the smallest detail, the unexpected can turn your plans upside down.

That’s why it’s good to have a flexible attitude. If something is cancelled or changed, can you still use it for your PR?

If a sudden opportunity arises, can you bring your PR forward to take advantage?

Having planned and created your material in advance, this can often give you a structure with which to improvise.

In these situations you have to act fast. Waiting to get everything perfect could mean you miss the opportunity.

That’s how the combination of planning and improvisation enables you to make the most of all PR opportunities.

Plan for the future and adapt your plan on the day.

That’s your #SillySeason PR task #4.

Good luck and do ask any questions you have.

Tomorrow: What is there to talk about?

Use the content and tips in our videos and posts below to boost your business.

 

Every PR action must have an objective

Have you ever been in a meeting where someone says “we must do a press release”?

Why? What’s the point?

We must know what we want to achieve before we start researching, interviewing, writing and distributing a press release.

Planning should identify business objectives. Focus your PR campaign and press releases on achieving these.

They could be to:

  • generate more sales
  • publicise an event
  • raise your individual profile
  • attract investor
  • launch a new product
  • establish a brand identity

When we know what we’re aiming to achieve, we know our time and effort will be well spent.

 

Plant PR as a tree in your business forest

Plant PR as a tree in your business forest | pressmeIn my work as business journalist, I often get calls from people who have started a business and need to attract paying customers fast. “We need to do some PR,” they say.

Most businesses have overheads: rent or loans, electricity, phone and internet, vehicle costs and more. These costs need to be paid irrespective of whether any customer sales are bringing in money. Most forms of promotion take time to deliver results, so starting to think about PR when a business or product has been launched is too late to deliver immediate sales.

PR is best planned much earlier. When it is part of the business plan plotting the launch, a PR campaign can be based on the business data and objectives set out in the plan. These will help to answer questions such as: Who is the target audience? What do they like? What need will drive customers to purchase?

Incorporating PR into planning embeds it in everyday business processes rather than leaving it as an afterthought. This makes it a habit so that ideas and actions for PR are generated naturally and not as a separate, time-consuming chore. Targeting, scheduling, delivery and measurement can all be worked out logically and not left to last-minute guesswork.

When the time is right, the activities planned can be put into action fast. The business will also be more prepared to take advantage of PR opportunities that arise without warning.

If a business is a forest, PR should be one of the varieties of tree planted at the beginning. From a distance it might not stand out on its own, but it will take root and add to the impact of the whole.

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