Components of a PR Plan

Note: This post was originally published at NakedPR.com / SocialRealist.com and was moved to BizAmmo upon that blog’s retirement.

Most small business owners have heard of a business plan and marketing plan, but have no idea how to develop a public relations plan. Here’s a short breakdown of PR plan components, and what they mean:

  • Problem / Opportunity – the problem facing the organization (such as no awareness of a non-profit organization and what they do) or an opportunity to reach the public in a new way
  • Situational Analysis – describe the situation (problem or opportunity) in detail
  • Goal - what is your primary goal? It should be broad, and probably not easy to quantify (i.e. “to raise public awareness of XYZ Organization”)
  • Audience – who are your key publics? who do you want your message to reach?
  • Message – what is the message you want your PR campaign to get across to the public?
  • Objectives – objectives will be more specific than your primary goal, and should be quantifiable and measureable (i.e. Attract 100,000 new donors over the course of 6 months)
  • Strategies – how will you meet your objectives in a general sense? (i.e. Involve a local celebrity who has a tie to your cause.)
  • Tactics – what specific things will you do during your PR campaign to reach your objectives and goals, which will fall within your strategies? (i.e. Host an event, send press releases, hold a speech / lecture, release a radio public service announcement, etc.)
  • Media List – a list of relevant media contacts you’ll use in your campaign
  • Calendar / Timeline / Gantt Plan – Your schedule for the course of your PR campaign
  • Budget – Include an overall budget estimate, as well as a breakdown of where that budget will be spent on your PR efforts
  • Evaluation – how do you plan to evaluate the whether or not your plan will be successful? How will you measure results to ensure you’ve met your objectives?

I’ll expand upon this basic PR plan outline in future posts, by providing more information on writing each section of the public relations plan, and providing more specific examples.


Jennifer Mattern is a professional blogger, business writer, indie author, and the owner of 3 Beat Media -- the company that operates BizAmmo.com. In addition to blogging about small business issues she also frequently writes about freelance writing, indie publishing, and blogging, as well as social media and marketing. Before becoming a full-time writer and publisher, Jenn ran a PR firm where she specialized in online PR and social media marketing.

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