Marketing in general, as a specialisation within a large corporate business, encompasses the whole broad field of public relations and other routes to market, as does the marketing industry as a whole. In order to connect a firm with a target audience, public relations professionals do a PR plan to communicate with that audience through media channels, speaking opportunities, and influencer marketing campaigns, among many other types of channel, tactic, strategy or comms pillar.

When a company wants to promote its products or services, it is up to the public relations agency in Bangkok and its team of communications and media management specialists to convey the important messages and put those across in an effective way. This may be done to drive traffic to the company’s website, boost awareness for the brand more generally, or enhance its social media presence and reach, or even modify the behaviour of the target audience in a way that is desirable to certain brands in certain sectors – technology and disruptive apps being a prime example of the latter.

PR plan PR campaign

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While public relations professionals (and the wider PR sector) frequently use the phrases “public relations plan” (or PR PLAN) and “public relations campaigns”, the distinction between the two terms is not as clear as it appears – certainly not to clients who may well be uninitiated with the process, especially if using an agency for the very first time.

There are some key differences between the two terms: PR campaign vs PR plan

A brief overview of public relations, a Plan for Public Relations, and a contrast between that and a Campaign for Public Relations

The PR Plan – What does a PR plan look like?

Public relations plans are documents, typically created in PowerPoint PPTX format and then converted before a client sees it as a PDF document, which is so it is presented in a non-destructive format, or collections of documents that contain all of the strategies for any public relations activities.

Public relations plans are designed to set out a medium to long-term initiative (usually 2 months minimum and year at the max) that is ongoing, as opposed to public relations campaigns, which we’ll discuss further in the section below on public relations campaign strategies.

The public relations plan outlines all of the company’s strengths, opportunities, weaknesses, and threats, and it provides PR experts with a grasp of the present position and what can be expected at the conclusion of each campaign for the company. It sets out a calendar (often in Gantt format) which represents each of the activities across overlapping timelines, as well as key messages based on the SWOT analysis and client-side consulting, and finally a description of launch tacticals, component events, etc.

Different types of public relations campaigns, some even with completely unaligned goals, can be included in a single public relations strategy that is focused on promoting and generating awareness for a certain business. The campaigns fall “under its wing.”

Public relations campaigns that include continuing public relations activities that come under the umbrella of a PR campaign can also be included in the public relations strategy. An effective public relations plan is one that is designed to accomplish a target or collection of objectives. In addition to the various public relations campaigns, the public relations plan will often include a communications strategy, which should be stated at the outset of the plan to make it obvious which actions will be carried out to achieve the goals. Many of these communication techniques are founded on specifics and facts about the client, the industry in which the client operates, and the target audience in question.

Public Relations Campaigns: what are they and what do they include?

Public relations campaigns are a series of activations, ideas, gimmicks, tacticals, events or communications. The campaign plan is comprised of all of the various activities that are carried out in order to achieve a given public relations goal with the campaign planning, which is detailed in the PR strategy (more generally, in principle, and for the purposes of client-side consulting), and in the PR plan, as outlined above.

A public relations campaign often has a defined time span, which can be as short as one day or as long as many years in length. Some are detailed, strategic, top-down and as yet TBC, while others are very targeted, specific and costed around a single event or product activation in Asia, for example.

When many public relations initiatives are grouped together under a single public relations strategy, they are more likely to be focused on pushing a single theme. We call this the umbrella message or over-arching campaign strategy. A PR plan can encompass many campaigns, which may or may not have the same message.

It is during the initial rollout – or shortly before – of a public relations campaign that the target audience is identified and the campaign is tailored to that specific audience, whether it be investors, journalists or a specific group of customers. It is also determined by the PR campaign what kind of measuring methods will be used to assess whether or not particular metrics or goals have been attained (PR agency KPIs, as a prime example). Included in this list are any and all of the media venues or social media platforms where the campaign should be presented, represented or included.

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