By Wright Communications -
17 April 2012
We are often asked to explain why public relations is important. There are any number of successful organisations we can point to which ‘get it’. They understand the importance of strategic public relations planning and implementation as part of their overall long-term strategy.
PR is not the
panacea, but it is hugely effective tool as part of a suite of
strategies, and usually much more credible than advertising.
PR strategy aims to secure specified objectives which contribute to
an organisation's long-term goals. But a strategy is impotent
without correct and compelling implementation.
some effective steps you can employ as an organisation to obtain
maximum benefit from your PR activities:
- Employ the services of a specialist
PR company with a proven track record of achieving great results.
And do it early on - too often we are called in at the 11th hour.
PR experts can always achieve results, but it is hugely beneficial
to be involved as early as possible.
- Have well-defined key objectives and
messages, and make sure your PR strategy is aligned with those, and
is designed to reach all stakeholders.
- Set up a 'media' section on your
website to offer important information, updates and news about your
organisation. Media can source stories here (though your PR firm
should have sent them any release first!).
- Tell the world about any good news
in your organisation - many businesses are socially responsible,
for example doing pro-bono work for a charity, but often don't
inform the public or media.
- Get smart about social media.
Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn all have great PR potential, but you
need to choose the right ones. Some social media platforms will
benefit your organisation more than others.
- Be proactive about any important
accomplishment - product launch, partnership, an award win or
industry event participation. These highlight your organisation's
vision and success.
- Build and nurture relationships with
stakeholders, especially media contacts, online and offline. There
is nothing like a great personal connection to encourage a positive
perception of your organisation.
You may be
able to initiate steps 2-7 yourself, but real PR success will
probably only be achieved with expert assistance (see step 1).