From Start to Finish: Tips for a Winning PR Campaign

[Broadreach president Linda Varrell at MPRC’s “Dissecting a Winning PR Campaign”]

There are many strategies and tactics that can push you towards a winning PR campaign. Last month, the Maine Public Relations Council (MPRC) invited two of its 2014 Golden Arrow Award recipients – Broadreach’s own Linda Varrell, and Katie Greenlaw, of Rinck Advertising – to share insights into what it takes to develop a successful campaign. From promoting a kayaking grandmother to building a brand new film festival, each panelist provided a unique perspective. Since you can’t prove victorious without measured results, the panel was also joined by former MPRC awards chair, Kate Bachman, of Industrium, providing background and recommendations on analytics and reporting. 

So you’re presented with a challenge – now what? 

  1. Identify and establish clear roles and governance.
  2. Develop an audience map – who will actually care? And, no, “everyone” isn’t a realistic answer.
  3. Identify measurable objectives from the start and assign metrics to each.
  4. Practice discipline – set a schedule for yourself and stick to it.
  5. Be proactive – plan and think ahead. Use as many media vehicles and tactics as are relevant.
  6. Incorporate distinct calls to action into your messaging. It’s not just about telling the story – what would you like your audience to do as a result? Tell them.
  7. Results, results, results. It’s crucial to be results driven. A winning campaign is defined as one that accomplished its objectives in a substantial way.

 As we dove into analytics, Kate’s introduction resonated with the whole audience: “Reporting is valuable because it’s how we prove our worth to people who don’t usually know what we do.” Some tips that Kate provided include: 

  • Watch, read and listen to the news you’re pitching.
  • Know what success looks like to the people you are presenting the information to.
  • Ensure transparency and reliability.
  • Include something visual that is easily understandable and provides strategic insight and recommendations.
  • Most importantly: “A lot of PR people get scared when you talk about math, but it’s your friend.” Don’t shy away from metrics and analytics; they are your best way to prove your value and success!

 MPRC hosts professional development sessions on the third Friday of every month, stay tuned for the announcement of March’s topic. If you found this intriguing and want to learn more, reach out to the speakers on Twitter at @BRPRPrez@KatieGreenlawand @ChiOKate

— by Jillian Kanter, Broadreach Assistant Account Executive and Communications Chair of MPRC