Managers: Can We Agree on This?
Your public relations effort really should involve more than press releases, brochures and special events if you are to get your PR money's worth.
In particular, you should be pursuing those three pots of gold at the end of the PR rainbow.
First, when you use the fundamental premise of public relations to produce external stakeholder behavior change - the kind that leads directly to achieving your managerial objectives.
Second, when you do something positive about the behaviors of those outside audiences that most affect your business, non-profit or association.
And finally, when you persuade those important outside folks to your way of thinking, then move them to take actions that help your department, division or subsidiary succeed.
The fundamental premise of public relations mentioned above is the action blueprint you need to reach those objectives. People act on their own perception of the facts before them, which leads to predictable behaviors about which something can be done. When we create, change or reinforce that opinion by reaching, persuading and moving-to-desired-action the very people whose behaviors affect the organization the most, the public relations mission is accomplished.
Look at the kinds of results this process can achieve -- fresh proposals for strategic alliances and joint ventures; community leaders beginning to seek you out; membership applications on the rise; prospects starting to do business with you; customers starting to make repeat purchases; welcome bounces in show room visits; capital givers or specifying sources beginning to look your way, and even politicians and legislators starting to view you as a key member of the business, non-profit or association communities.
If you wish to pursue such results, spend some time listing those outside audiences of yours who behave in ways that help or hurt you in achieving your objectives. Then prioritize them by how severely they impact your operation. Best place to start is with the target audience in first place on your list.
The chances of you having current information as to how most members of that key outside audience perceive your organization, are not that good. If you had been regularly sampling those perceptions, however, these data would be available to you.
You and your colleagues will have to monitor those perceptions yourselves if the dollars aren't there to pay for professional survey people. Interact with members of that outside audience by asking questions like "Have you ever had contact with anyone from our organization? Was it a satisfactory experience? Are you familiar with our services or products?" Be alert for negative statements, especially evasive or hesitant replies. Watch carefully for false assumptions, untruths, misconceptions, inaccuracies and potentially hurtful rumors. When you find such damaging perceptions, they will need to be corrected, because experience shows they usually lead to negative behaviors.
You must do something about such negativity before it morphs into injurious behavior, so you now select the specific perception to be altered, and that becomes your public relations goal.
Sorry to say, a PR goal without a strategy to show you how to get there, is like Huevos Rancheros without the hot sauce. That's why you must select one of three strategies especially designed to create perception or opinion where there may be none, or change existing perception, or reinforce it. The challenge here is to insure that the goal and its strategy match each other. You wouldn't want to select "change existing perception" when current perception is just right, suggesting a "reinforce" strategy.
Here is where your writers earn their money. Someone on your PR team must put those writing skills to work and prepare a compelling message carefully designed to alter your key target audience's perception, as called for by your public relations goal.
A word of caution: combine your corrective message with another newsworthy announcement of a new product, service or employee, which may lend credibility by not overemphasizing the correction.
Your corrective message also must be multifaceted, including several values. Clarity for example. It must be clear about what perception needs clarification or correction, and why. Your facts must be truthful and your position must be persuasive, logically explained and believable if it is to hold the attention of members of that target audience, and actually move perception your way.
Here is a less rigorous part of your campaign, selecting the the actual tactics you will use to carry your persuasive new thoughts to the attention of that external audience.
There is no shortage of communications tactics available to you including letters-to-the-editor, brochures, press releases and speeches. Or, you might settle on tactics such as radio and newspaper interviews, personal contacts, newsletters, or group briefings, always making sure those you select have a record of reaching the same audiences as those that make up your target stakeholders.
Inevitably, you will be asked about progress and will have to once again monitor perceptions among your target audience members. Using questions similar to those used during your earlier monitoring session, the difference here is that you will now watch carefully for indications that audience perceptions are beginning to move in your direction.
Luckily, one option remains ours to exercise -- we can always expedite matters and put the pedal to the metal by employing additional communications tactics, AND by increasing their frequencies.
When you target behavior change that lets you achieve your operating objectives, you are doing what is necessary to move those important outside audiences towards actions that will lead to the success of your department, division or subsidiary.
About The Author
Bob Kelly counsels, writes and speaks to business, non-profit and association managers about using the fundamental premise of public relations to achieve their operating objectives. He has been DPR, Pepsi-Cola Co.; AGM-PR, Texaco Inc.; VP-PR, Olin Corp.; VP-PR, Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co.; director of communications, U.S. Department of the Interior, and deputy assistant press secretary, The White House. He holds a bachelor of science degree from Columbia University, major in public relations. mailto:bobkelly@TNI.net. Visit: http://www.prcommentary.com
Advertising by textad.biz
Go Ahead, click an ad, you know you want to.
VIP Database; Does Your Company Have One?
The VIP databases are fun to create and can be an excellent source for your small business. You say; VIP database, "what is that; who would I put in it?" It will contain things like mayor, city council persons, city managers, service club board members, campaign contributors in previous elections, human resource directors, P.
Time to Spruce Up Your Public Relations?
Better check out the public relations fundamental premise, then take action in your own best interest.The premise reads this way: "People act on their own perception of the facts before them, which leads to predictable behaviors about which something can be done.
Anchor Your Relationships
I heard a speaker recently who was talking about how to maintain strong relationships. As I listened to his basic principle, I realized that it is true in all of our life situations, be it work, family etc.
TV Reporter Shares the Secrets to Getting Covered on the News
Do you have a great idea for a story, but no clue how to get it in the news? Are you tired of pitching press releases the news media simply ignores?After twenty years of beating the street as a TV reporter, I have a scoop for you: the media needs good stories. But most stories are pitched so poorly, they are lost in the blizzard of faxes that blanket every newsroom.
Right PR Focus A Powerful Advantage
Powerful is a strong word. But it fits here.
How to Get $1000 worth of Advertising for $60
©2004 Jeffrey DobkinSixty dollars doesn't go a long way in buying advertising space. But if you spend it creatively, you can get over ten times that value in newspaper or magazine lineage.
Do I Really Need a Publicist?
Are you hesitating about hiring a publicist or, if you have one, do you stop before writing that final zero on the monthly check, and think "I can do that myself." Suuure, you can!But just to be certain, take this little test.
Five Great News Stories You're Sitting On Right Now
Smaller companies don't always have the budget - or inclination - to retain a PR hotshot to tell the world about their business success, but that doesn't mean they aren't a ready source of news.The problem is it's often dull news which is ignored by all except the industry press and quite rightly so in most cases.
Nows The Time To Get Christmas Media Coverage
Publicity seekers know that Christmas can provide a bonanza of media coverage. Every media outlet, it seems is cranking out a special edition on gifts for the winter holidays.
Media Training: Why Nobodys Listening to You
SORRY?WERE YOU SAYING SOMETHING?Many spokespeople approach media interviews the same way they would a major speech. They think at length about what they want to say, jot down a few notes, and try to memorize a few key points.
Is This the PR You Thought You Were Getting?
You know, where you do something positive about the behaviors of those outside audiences that MOST affect your organization? And where you do so by persuading those important external folks to your way of thinking, then move them to take actions that help your department, division or subsidiary succeed?Yes, that's right, it's where you use the fundamental premise of public relations to produce external stakeholder behavior change - the kind that leads directly to achieving your managerial objectives.What it boils down to is (1) your public relations effort must involve more than special events, brochures and news releases if you really want to get your money's worth, and (2), the right PR really CAN alter individual perception and lead to changed behaviors that help you succeed!You can do it when you bring that fundamental premise of PR mentioned above, into play.
Three Communication Secrets of The Great Communicator
I've worked in media and public relations for 20 years, and experience has taught me that communication is an essential skill to master in order to be successful in all aspects of one's life. No one person can do many things without the involvement of other human beings; having superior communication skills, then, is a highly enviable quality, and those who manage such a feat serve as role models to the rest of us.
Managers: Get Real, Please!
Personnel mentions in the newspaper and product plugs on radio hardly qualify as an adequate return on your public relations dollar, and you probably know it!Especially unfortunate when your PR budget could be doing something really positive about the behaviors of those outside audiences that most affect your business, non-profit or association.And also when it could be delivering external stakeholder behavior change - the kind that leads directly to achieving your managerial objectives.
Maybe the Strongest PR on Planet Earth?
Strong for business, non-profit and association managers when they use the fundamental premise of public relations to produce external stakeholder behavior change - the kind that leads directly to achieving their managerial objectives.And strong when they do something positive about the behaviors of those outside audiences that most affect their organization.
Forget The Story Youre Promoting - Heres What Journalists Really Want From PR People
Although it seems less common these days, there are still a fair number of us public relations practitioners who enter the business by crossing over from the journalist's side of the notebook.When you make that transition, you become something of an oracle.
Public Relations: Understanding Educated Gambling
As an entry level position to PR, I found myself typing up a forecast by a major Public Relation's firm for a major pharmaceutical company of what life would be like in the year 2000. Market research predictions included telephones with monitors that could help you see people while you talked, fax machines that could transmit information over telephone wires, microwave ovens for reducing food defrosting time from hours to minutes and other devices that have certainly come to pass.
Can Your PR Game Plan be Salvaged?
If, as is often the case, you are preoccupied with comm- unications tactics instead of working a plan to actively pursue those outside audience behaviors that stop you from achieving your objectives, the answer is yes.Fortunately, it's no big deal making the switch to a public relations problem-solving sequence that works.
Why PR is a Vital Force
Because it can alter individual perception and lead to changed behaviors. Something of profound importance to businesses, non-profits and associations who can sink or swim on how well they employ this crucial dynamic.
Do You Have Issues?
Every organization has issues that could affect its operation. The following are some thoughts on issues management and some of the tactics available to us in this discipline.
Custom Reasons for Custom Publishing
Once considered the stepchild of the publishing industry, custom publishing now claims a legitimate slice of the B-to-B MarCom pie.Custom magazines, newsletters and sponsored supplements are becoming an increasingly integral part of the overall marketing program.
|home | site map|