As 2012 draws to a close we are busy preparing PR plans for next year for our clients.
Planning is one of the key elements of PR to ensure that everyone is agreed on both business and communication objectives, and how they will be achieved.
The activity ahead of a scheduled announcement or launch can take several weeks, with the preparation of press materials and liaison with journalists to consider, particularly with monthly media which will have deadlines well in advance of the date of publication. To get all the necessary steps plotted in will ensure that it is done in an efficient and effective manner, although, of course, a degree of flexibility is required as timings can sometimes slip due to outside factors.
It is also important to take the time now to review the past year in terms of PR activity and re-examine key messages and target audiences to ensure they are still appropriate and relevant. Company-wide brainstorming can introduce new thoughts, ideas and suggestions which can be discussed with the client and incorporated as appropriate.
Once the plan is completed and presented, it is important to obtain feedback and approval from the client. This ensures that shared expectations are created on the PR activities that will be implemented within the coming year. However, it is important to review the plan ongoing as public relations is fluid and modifications may need to be made as the year progresses.
Investing the time in planning and preparation now and working closely with the client to make the plan a success will make sure the PR budget works to maximum effectiveness.