Drafting a PR plan is a quintessential part of overall marketing strategy for any consumer brand. PR not only helps in grabbing eyeballs amongst your end consumers but also creates visibility in the eyes of your stakeholders, venture capitalists, investors which is important in order to raise funding for your startup.
While working on a strategic PR plan for your brand you need to incorporate some key elements that are mentioned below:
STATING THE BRAND OBJECTIVE
Objectives are the core of any managerial action and provide direction to the plan, also while stating the objective divide it into short term and long term. Once you are aware of the brand’s vision transform them into objectives by identifying long term and short term goals. While defining the objectives keep in mind that it is easier to understand and everyone should be compelled to achieve it.
DEFINING THE TARGET AUDIENCE
We often tend to skip this important part while preparing the strategy plan for the brand. Every plan you share with the client should clearly define the target audience. Once the target audience is clear then only an agency can recommend a sound communication plan. Understand who you are talking to, post which define your overall communication strategy, the PR recommendations and of course the media mix.
PUTTING DOWN THE KEY MESSAGES
Preparing a key-messaging document is critical especially in a case where many spokespeople are involved. The idea is simple – to ensure there is no disparity while communicating with the media. The investment numbers, growth rate, expansion plans, brand objectives, overall brand strategy needs to be put in black and white for a transparent, sound and clear communication. Further it is imperative that you revisit those key messages once a quarter to add or subtract the pointers.
OVERALL BRAND STRATEGY
Once the brand’s objective, target audience and key messages are defined comes the most important part for any PR plan- a clear thought through and executable brand strategy. Define what is it that the brand needs- Is it Salience, Engagement, Advocacy or something different.
The heart of the plan is finally here, after a thorough analysis of the brand’s objective, defining who are target audience is, finalizing on the core brand messages and deciding on the approach we need to create a strategic PR plan. Divide the plan in seven broad categories namely activity, details, city, agency responsibility, brand responsibility, timelines and targets. You may have to tweak the plan from brand to brand though the gist shall be the same.
Target media is different in each brand’s case- for lifestyle and luxury brands there are publications like Robb Report, Vogue, Harpers Bazaar, for auto brands there are specific magazines ranging from Overdrive, Autocar and more. Reaching to the precise media ensures that the news is finally reaching to your customers. It is important to specify where all would you want coverage to appear in the plan itself.
No plan is complete until you put down clearly how will you be measuring success for the PR campaign. Defining success again is different for every brand. Success is directly related to your goals. To know if the PR campaign has been successful or not we need to go back to the drawing board and measure how close we are in achieving the overall objective. Some of the key parameters that can help us measure success are- How many key messages have been covered? What is the share of voice? What is the tone of voice? Has the target media been achieved? Have we achieved the scope of work mentioned in the strategy plan? Once you have good numbers to share on these parameters means that the PR plan has been successful.