When embarking on a PR / marketing campaign, it is critical that you first start with a plan. Achieving goals and objectives is what PR is all about, and you need to clarify what your goals and objectives are so you have a way of measuring that the plan is working or what needs to be changed.
Putting together an effective PR / marketing plan is not a difficult process, but it does take thought. The first step is to define what your organization’s mission is. Often a mission statement is relegated to a nonprofit, but every company should have a mission statement. A mission statement defines the values of your organization; what you stand for; how you are contributing to the greater good. Yes, your primary mission may be profit, but if you aspire to a higher mission as well, it makes achieving profit all the more gratifying.
Next you want to state your goals and objectives. What is it you want to achieve in six months? A year? Five years? This can be stated in gross sales, increase in sales force, more locations, more product sold, more people served and so forth. Know where you want to go.
Next, define your target audiences. Who do you need to reach? Whose attention do you need to get? Who do you need to dialogue with? Sometimes companies believe everybody can use their product or service and they may be right in concept, but it is a tremendous task to reach everybody in the world. Make it manageable.
Then, you need to define how you’re going to get there. What are the tasks, projects and activities that are going to achieve your objectives? These may include advertising, publicity, special events, direct mail, social media, networking, writing articles, delivering speeches, joining organizations, e-mail blasts. The list can go on.
If you don’t have internal expertise in developing your PR / marketing plan, consider retaining a marketing consultant. PR / marketing consultants have done numerous plans and can help you think through the issues and the steps to achieve your marketing goals and objectives.
Remember, you wouldn’t get in your car and start driving without knowing where you are headed. The same holds true as you grow your business.