Public relations is to develop, execute, and maintain highly-targeted messaging to a specific audience. A dear cousin to marketing, public relations strategies and tactics range from the elementary to very advanced positioning of words, images, and thought.
Here are fifteen public relations strategies and tactics used by the experts:
Strategy #1: In Line With Marketing
Your public relations strategies and tactics should be in line with your marketing. You do not want to present a different public image than your marketing. This creates consumer confusion and unnecessary conflict.
Strategy #2: Clear, Concise Dialogue
Whether it’s a social media post or a press release, the words you choose should be carefully selected. Dialogue should be clear, short, and to-the-point. Every word could very well be analyzed and judged. PR agencies can help you prepare a set of clear, concise dialogue that sound professional and poised.
Strategy #3: Measure & Adjust
You won’t always get the message right on a first try in public relations. Monitor and analyze conversations being had around your PR. If people aren’t responding as you intended, make adjustments. Public relations isn’t just one-and-done. It’s an ongoing process.
Strategy #4: To Derive Profitability
Some say PR is about presenting a positive public image. Not necessarily so. If somehow a negative public image can make you more profit in the long-term, public relations team can weaponize this though you have to be extremely careful.
Strategy #5: Create Appeal
Publicity has an angle. Some call this manipulation but we wouldn’t go so far. It’s about establishing appeal to an intended audience. If you know this audience well and you understand what matters to them, presenting a brand or personality in a favorable tone is likely not so difficult.
Strategy #6: Control Your Narrative
You can’t control how the media or the public presents, edits, or sees your PR. That said, a public relations team can find some control in having a website, social media accounts, and speaking directly to supporters. This way, you present your messaging raw, natural, and as intended. Eliminate the power of misinformation.
Strategy #7: Media Placement
Public relations has got to get your message out there. Depending on where one’s audience is, this could involve online ads and social media marketing, print media placements, and video broadcasts on YouTube or news channels. Tap into business and industry media contacts. Take time to find opportunities to get your brand placed in front of the right audience. This can be industry events, public presentations, community events, and more.
Strategy #8: Establish Credibility
Consumers want real. They want authentic. They want credible sources of information and genuineness in the brands they surround themselves with. People are skeptical about traditional ads. A written press release isn’t enough. You’ve got to go beyond, finding a way to present products and services in a meaningful way that establishes credibility over sell-ability.
Strategy #9: Think Like A Journalist
A press release should be interesting, exciting, insightful, and eye-catching. Look at what a journalist might do with your situation. By presenting a media-ready angle complete with key language and insights, media will be ready to jump on board quickly. Make the value from a journalist’s perspective obvious.
Strategy #10: Reach New Markets
Several public relations strategies are based around reaching new market segments, often in cities, regions, or countries abroad. To establish and grow market share in new markets, a lot of research has to be done to ensure you are speaking effectively to your target audience.
Strategy #11: Topics of Public Interest
Every day, there are topics of public interest and newsworthy events you can capitalize on. Emergency response public relations isn’t the only type of press to be ready for. Service your community. Be helpful. Generate publicity through volunteer work and sponsorship, in combination with what’s important to the public at a given time.
Strategy #12: Study Past PR Campaigns
Your public relations has got to be wholly unique. Learn from the past. Look at PR from teams in similar situations as your own. Note what they did right and wrong. Use it as inspiration but don’t copy. You want your public relations to come across as one-of-a-kind.
Strategy #13: Have Strong Social Media
Social media creates and supports conversation. You don’t have to post anything but be engaged with what’s going on. You don’t want conversation in these areas becoming overly negative. It can become a runaway train on social media as audiences and users respond to messaging. A strong social media presence also allows you to speak directly to users, sans manipulations from the media.
Strategy #14: Work from Emotions
PR works when it comes from a place of emotion and causes an emotional reaction. It can be sadness, happiness, anger, or curiosity. Input a sense of urgency into your messaging. Have meaning. Think of what matters to your audience – i.e. family, friends, education, professional success, ambition, etc. – and use it!
Strategy #15: Hire A PR Team
Public relations requires a wide range of expertise. You need someone great in graphics and image editing. Your writer has got to be witty and diverse in the voices they can write in. A videographer, photographer, and account manager may also be needed. There are many positions to fill in public relations.