Public Relations DEFINITIONS
Public relations consist of all communications with all the people with whom our organization has contact.
Individuals too experience PR unless one isolated beyond human contact
International PR definitions
- BRITISH INSTITUTE OF PUBLIC RELATIONS
PR is the planned and sustained effort to establish and maintain goodwill and mutual understanding between an organization and its publics.
Contents of definition
Planned and sustained effort – Meaning that PR activity is organized as a campaign or program which is continuous and not haphazard
Its purpose is to ‘establish and maintain mutual understanding’ – meaning to ensure the organizations is understood by others. Mutual understanding is between organization and the publics
- Frank Jefkins (1998)
PR consists of all forms of planned communication outwards and inwards between an organization and its publics for the purpose of achieving specific objectives concerning mutual understanding
Contents of definition
· Specific objectives- particular set activities e.g. changing attitudes from negative to positive
· Here MBO applies to public relations
· The results targeted become measurable- this challenges the fallacy that PR is intangible
· Market research techniques can be employed to test the degree of success or failure of PR campaigns
- THE MEXICAN STATEMENT
This came as a result of World Assembly of Public Relations Associates in Mexico 1978.
Public Relations practice is the art and social science of analyzing trends, predicting their consequences, counseling organization leaders and implementing planned programs of action that will serve both the organizations and public interest
· Analyzing trends by applying research techniques before planning a public relations program
· Responsibility of public relations to public interest is stated
· Public relations is about goodwill and reputation
PUBLIC RELATIONS DISTINGUISHED From Other Fields
1. PR and advertising
2. PR and marketing
3. PR and sales promotion
4. PR and propaganda
5. PR and publicity
6. PR and public affairs
1 PR and advertising
Advertising presents the most persuasive possible selling message to the right prospects for the product or service at the lowest possible cost
· PR is not a form of advertising, rather it entails a couple of other intertwined activities and not one sole activity as advertising which is to sell
· Advertising is limited to marketing function whereas PR relates to all the organization’s activities
2 PR and Marketing
Marketing is the management process responsible for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably.
· Marketing is one function of PR within an organization
· The marketing mix strategy incorporates PR activities e.g. packaging, pricing, selling, distribution and after sales services. All these bear a degree of communication and goodwill emanating from PR.
3 PR and Sales Promotion
Sales promotion consists of short-term schemes usually at the point of sales to launch products or revive and increase sales.
· Sales promotions have PR aspects of bringing products closer to customers but should not be confused to be PR. It is one of the tiny webs of PR.
4 PR and Propaganda
Is information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote a political cause or point of view.
Propaganda is the means of gaining support for an opinion, creed or belief which may not be necessarily as viewed by the target audience
· Propaganda entails communication which is an aspect of PR e.g. image building,
· Propaganda is liable to invite suspicion or disagreement.
5 PR and publicity
Publicity results from information being made known.
- Behavior takes lead here and PR guides how this behavior should be
6. PR and Public Affairs
Public affairs is a specialized part of public relations that builds and maintains government and local community relations in order to influence public policy
- It addresses public policy and the publics who influence such policy
7. PR and Press Agency
Press agency is a PR function of creating newsworthy stories and events to attract media attention and gain public notice e.g. sex scandals
Plays a major role in political campaigns wanting to attract large audience through media
PR and Advocacy
Types Of Advocacy
Bureaucratic advocacy: people considered "experts" have more chance to succeed at presenting their issues to decision-makers. They use bureaucratic advocacy to influence the agenda, however at a slower pace. e.g the political analyst debates
Health advocacy: Health advocacy supports and promotes patient's health care rights as well as enhance community health and policy initiatives that focus on the availability, safety and quality of care. eg IFAS advert
Ideological advocacy: in this approach, groups fight, sometimes during protests, to advance their ideas in the decision-making circles. e.g the wangari mathaai women protests
Interest-group advocacy: lobbying is the main tool used by interest groups doing mass advocacy. It is a form of action that does not always succeed at influencing political decision-makers as it requires resources and organization to be effective. e.g the sighning of 1 million signatures
Legislative advocacy: legislative advocacy is the “reliance on the state or federal legislative process” as part of a strategy to create change. the the election petitions.
Mass advocacy: is any type of action taken by large groups (petitions, demonstrations, etc.) the recent langata primary scumishes
Media advocacy: is “the strategic use of the mass media as a resource to advance a social or public policy initiative” (Jernigan and Wright, 1996.). The all round media capaigns after the 2007 PEV that aimed at rebuilding national cohesion
Special Education Advocacy: communication with a " specific focus on the educational rights of students with disabilities."
It is an impression or perception of an individual, group of people or organisation that the public have of the subject.
There are several kinds of images that an organization can have
- Mirror image
· Image that organization leaders believe is the impression outsiders have of the said organization
· Could be an illusion bred on wishful thinking because knowledge and understanding of outside opinion lacks
- Current image
· One held by people outside the organization
· May be based on experience or on poor information and understanding
· PR deals with a world of hostility, prejudice, apathy and ignorance which could result in an unfair current image
· PR officer may be tasked with interpreting outside attitudes to management who may dwell on false ideas
· PR works to make attitudes correct and not favorable
- Wish image
· Is the desired image, the one management wishes to achieve
· Applies to something new when outsiders are as yet completely uninformed
- Corporate image
· It is the image of the organization itself rather than its products or services
· Made up of company history, financial success, stability, quality of production, industrial relations etc
- Multiple image
· These represent the several images created by representatives of an organization which do not conform to a uniform image for the total organization
· This can be overcome by use of uniform to form a corporate identity
· Symbols, badges, name displays, interior layout etc may be adopted to fortify the corporate identity desired
- Good and bad images
· This originate from either positive or negative publicity
· If PR is to be credible, it must avoid false image making.
QUALITIES OF A GOOD PR PRACTITIONER
- Ability to get on with all kinds of people. Be understanding and tolerant
- Ability to communicate, explain by means of spoken or written word or by visual device e.g. photography
- Ability to organize, calls for patient planning
- Personal integrity in both professional and private life
- Imagination- creative sense while designing, journal, writing a speech, planning campaigns etc
- Ability to find out- be more than willing to learn and have ready access to information
- Ability to research and evaluate the results of a PR campaign and learn from the findings.
- GROUP WORK PRESENTATIONHistory of Public Relations
· Seedbed era 1900 - 1917
· World war 1 period 1917 – 1919
· Booming twenties 1920 -1929
· Roosevelt Era and world war II 1930 – 1945
· Post war boom 1945 – 1965
· Global information age 1965 to present
Guidelines to the question:
· Identify key personalities associated with each period?
· Discuss the major activities at each stage.
· Any challenges faced in each period?
· Any great milestone in each period?
· How are the eras tied in terms of growth of PR?
· What has each era contributed towards growth of PR?
PUBLIC RELATIONS OBJECTIVES
What is tangible and intangible PR?
Tangible PR has objectives whereas intangible PR lacks objectives. Intangible PR derives from unplanned, purposeless PR bound by obtaining favorable images or favorable media coverage.
Tangible PR is cost effective
- The objectives that an organization settles on should be prioritized e.g.
Ø To improve the caliber of job applicants
Ø To establish a new corporate identity
Ø To support a sponsorship scheme
- In planning, you define the possible objectives
- Objective will depend on the size and resources of the PR department on the PR consultancy fee which represents so much time.
Defining the PR Objectives
Objectives are selected purposefully. There are two ways of defining objectives:
- From research – research may identify problems which need PR solutions e.g. lack of enthusiasm among retailers
- From consultations with department heads o discover their communication needs
How do we select objectives in order of priority?
- A number of worthy objectives are listed
- Divide them into long and short term
- 1st kind of objectives are mainly accommodated by organizations e.g. supermarket plans to open several stores compared to long term objective – supermarket plans t o export goods to South Africa.
OBJECTIVES AND TIME
- Get total workable hours- Deduct all non working hours (e.g. holidays) from the total number of hours a person could work on a normal five days a week basis
- Staff can only do 1 work at a time
- Better trained qualified and experienced people work better and faster and efficiently than the juniors
- This same argument applies to consultants whose fees represents time and expertise
OBJECTIVES VERSUS FUNDS
- It may be a constraint if not well planned
- Funds govern the number of in house staff and its quality on the value represented by a consultant’s fee
- Funds also do pose constraints on other resources e.g. equipment for conducting PR- PCs, Cameras, vehicles etc
EFFECTS OF FUNDS AND TIME CONSTRAINTS
- If management is done by objectives therefore the objectives be tailored to the realities of physical feasibility
- Budgeting be done with objectives in mind
- Scheduled activities that will help achieve the objectives must be completed on a timely basis to help curb time wastage
- Contingency resources should be set aside for any eventuality
EFFECT OF ACHIEVING OBJECTIVES
1. Confidence for the PR grows both for the employer and the client (all publics)
2. Expands the services of PR practitioners because it is a necessity to an organization and not a luxury
3. Reduces cost of advertising since adequate and relevant information reaches the publics.
PUBLIC RELATIONS DEPARTMENTS’ ROLE AND FUNCTIONS
- When a company engages a lot in PR work it is advisable to have an internal PR department
- Consultancy is only preferred when it doesn’t pay to set up an in-house PR department or when special skills are needed or some outside professional skills are needed or some outside professional advice is required.
- Neither a department or consultancy is better than the other but they do work hand in hand when the need arises
- Most times large organizations use both because of the wider scope of publics
- PR functions by being an all rounder, a communicator, adviser and campaign planner
- The PR sources for information, creativity, designs, programs and produces what befits the company. Therefore the more the PR officer knows the organization the better he/she speaks on its behalf
- PR is concerned with staff, dealers, consumers and all kinds of relations that touch on the organization
Size of PR departments
Size depends on:
- Size of the organization
- Company need for effective PR
- Company of organization
- Special PR requirements
- Size depends on activities of organization
- More PR activities may require specialized e.g. press officers, house journal editor, print designer etc
- Possible staffing of a PR department in a large manufacturing company.
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THE PR MANAGER
- Is the lead person in PR acts of an organization. May be termed the PR director if he sits on the board of an organization
- PR practitioner refers to any professional PR person whether inhouse or consulting
- Sets targets/defines objectives for PR operations
- Estimates the working hours and other resources needed to be costed
- Decides priorities of activities
- Decides feasibility of carrying out objectives
The four fold PR task
How to succeed as PR
- Be a competent professional practitioner to win confidence
- Establish internal lines of communication
- Create external lines of communication, to be a credible source
- Always brief top management- for interviews, speeches, public occasions, research a lot
- Arrange rehearsals where necessary e.g. CEO interviews for your organizations
- Have access to management to get necessary information
PR DEPARTMENTS AND ACTIVITIES
The kinds of PR work carried out by a PR manager and staff will differ from one organization to another
- Each organization will have varied activities
- A year’s work in an organization may consist of all these activities to be fitted in the PR plan of the following
1. Writing and distributing news releases, feature articles etc
2. Organizing press conferences, receptions and facility visits
3. Maintain media information services
4. Arranging press, radio and TV interviews for management
5. Briefing photographs and maintaining picture library
6. Editing and producing staff magazines or newspapers and organizing other forms of internal communication such as videotapes, slide presentations
7. Writing and producing print such as educational literature, company annual reports, induction literature etc
8. Editing and producing external journals aimed at distributors, users, customers etc
9. Commissioning and organizing PR exhibitions and displays
10. Commissioning and maintaining forms of corporate identity and house styling such as color schemes, print house style and livery on vehicles
11. Handling PR sponsorships
12. Attendance at appropriate meetings
13. Represent organizations at trade. Dealer conferences and meetings
14. Liaison with PR consultancy
15. Training PR staff
16. Liaison with politicians and civil servants
17. Arranging visits by royalty
18. Analysis of feedback and evaluation of the results of efforts
19. Public speaking – carrying out MC functions
ADVANTAGES OF A PR MANAGER AND DEPARTMENT
The advantage of having a PR unit (department) run by a PR manager are;
- The manager is familiar with his/her organization
- The manager may have specialized knowledge/experience of trade, industry or subject with which the organization is concerned
- He/she can easily establish lines of communication inside the organization and so get reliable information easily
- He/she is on the spot and can swiftly get quick decisions in an emergency e.g. crisis communication
- He/ she is in a strong position to give management day to day advice
DISADVANTAGES OF A PR MANAGER AND DEPARTMENT
- He/ she may be so close to the organization that he/she reaches levels of biasness. It may be reflected in their working style and way of writing this is disadvantageous to the organization. If PR, marketing, sales, advertising are mixed up media become suspicious of material as sales and marketing buy space in media while PR is meant to supply news for editorial departments.
- If he or she isn’t properly trained and qualified the PR manager might be a liability
- The PR manager may lack sufficient executive status to enjoy respect of management and media
- The PR manager may simply be given the title ‘manager’ by management yet they don’t know the profession
- Management may not have agreed a job specification which enables the PR to take on the responsibilities discussed earlier
It is the provision of specified technical and creative services by an individual or a group qualified to do so by reason of experience and training and having legal corporate identity registered for the purpose of business in Kenya. PR is not agency (not anyone’s agency)
PLANNING PUBLIC RELATIONS PROGRAMMES
Why plan PR Programmes
External PR activities conducted by an organization has the objective of defining, developing and managing the company’s corporate and/or product brand and image. PR programmes and planning should be tied to individual business objectives. PR planning entail two key processes:
a) Strategic thinking
b) Strategic management
a) Strategic Thinking
Strategic thinking involves predicting or establishing a desired future goal, determining what forces will help hinder movement towards the goal and formulating a plan for achieving desired state.
Program planners need to do a lot of situation analysis to get as much information as possible.
A strategy captures the essence of strategic thinking and management expectations.
Corporate level strategy provides the overall goal and direction within which an organization’s decisions operate.
In planning mode, strategy takes the form of systematic plan and guidelines for achieving corporate and business success.
Planning may be informed by strategic decision based on financial, legal or technical considerations and date. It is therefore the responsibility of the PR practitioner to anticipate the impact of those decisions on various stakeholders.
b) Strategic Management
It represents open systems approach to PR rather than the closed systems approach. According to Cutlip S et al (1952), strategic management is a process that enables any organization to identify its long term opportunities and threats, mobilize its assets and carry out successful implementation strategy.
PR practitioners work with other managers to develop strategic program plans. Although each program calls for specifically tailored and unique activities, the overall approach is similar from plan to plan. The planning and programming process typically includes the following steps:
1. Defining roles and missions. Determine the nature and scope of the work to be performed.
2. Determine key result areas. Determine where to invest time, energy and talent.
3. Identify and specify indicators of effectiveness. Determine measureable factors on which objectives may be set.
4. Select and set objectives. Determine results to be achieved.
5. Prepare action plans. Define how to achieve specific objectives.
a. Programme – Establish a sequence of actions to follow in reaching objectives.
b. Schedule – Establish time requirements for objectives.
c. Budget – Determine and assign resources.
d. Fix accountability – Define who will accomplish tasks.
e. Review and reconcile – Test and revise a tentative plan as needed.
f. Establish controls – to ensure effective accomplishments.
g. Communicate – determine the organization’s communication necessary for achieving understanding and commitment.
h. Implement – Secure agreement among all key people.
BENEFITS / ADVANTAGES OF PLANNING PR PROGRAMMES
1. PR will receive increased management participation and support.
2. Will lead to integrated programmes in which total effort results in definite accomplishment towards specific goals.
3. The programme will be emphasized in a positive and not defensive manner.
4. There will be careful deliberation on choice of themes timing and tactics to be employed.
5. A plan makes better use of time this making time spent planning wise investment.
6. A plan provides a baseline from which modification can be made with full awareness that changes in strategy and direction are occurring.
7. Results happen out of planned activities this achievement can be measured.
8. Part of planning involves building in strategies for handling contingencies such as industrial accidents, transfers, operational crises, etc.
A programme plan:
A PR plan starts with the organizations mission statement. It proceeds from the specific role assigned to it in the form of a PR mission. An investigative process to inform. Planning involves 4 aspects:
a) Searching – look backward: Learn the organization’s history. If it is new, how did it come about.
b) A wide look around: E.g. where there has been no continuing monitoring of public opinion towards the organization, take that step. Monitor public opinion.
c) A deep look inside: Every organization has a character and personality. Both are reflections of those who control the organization. Examine the different policies in an organization to know it’s character. Look at day to day actions in the organization.
d) Take a long long look ahead: Ask yourself if the mission of the organization is realistically attainable. How can PR fit in it?
THE SIX POINT PLANNING MODEL FOR PUBLIC RELATIONS
This was designed by Frank Jefkins (1994). The components of the plan are as follows:
- Appreciate the situation (do a lot of research)
- Define the objectives
- Define all publics relevant to the program
- Select appropriate media and techniques
- Set a realistic budget
- Monitor and evaluate the results.
The six point planning model is sound basis for PR planning and could be used for planning all promotional communication activities.
- Appreciate The Situation
Ask yourself the following questions:
1. What is the current situation?
2. What do people know about it?
3. Are there misunderstandings?
4. What are the trends?
5. What are opinion polls, like?
6. Who are the customers we are dealing with?
All the above questions and others help you piece together information that will help you plan realistically.
Once you gather that there are negative thoughts of hostility, prejudice, apathy and ignorance, the information gathered will help you plan activities that will bring positivity.
Hostility – sympathy
Prejudice – acceptance
Apathy – interest
Ignorance – knowledge
Important to note is that all these negative trends cannot be changed once they change over time and systematically.
- Define Objectives
Spell out the objectives of your program. Is the aim to change attitudes from X to Y. Ask yourself exactly what you want to achieve. List the objectives then categorise them as short term or long term.
- Define the Publics
List and define the public you want to reach as
Know your publics’ characteristics at individual or corporate level. The more you know of the publics’ characteristics the easier it will be when handling them.
- Select the appropriate media and techniques
This is the chronological order in which you should communicate with the media to make sure that information is distributed at the right time and place. This will help have maximum impact. It is no good sending out a press release and hope that it will work for you. Many other techniques have to be employed. If it is hard news (ask yourself the 5 Ws and 1H) send this info to immediate media e.g. the RED CROSS response to disaster, its reported immediately. For current affairs you may choose weekly publications.
- Set A Realistic Budget
Budgeting in PR relates to four key areas in an organization:
a) Total income (funds available) to the organization.
b) Competitive necessity
c) Overall task of organization – what is it?
d) Profit or surplus over expenses.
i) When total income or funds available is the basis, PR is allocated a percentage.
ii) When competitive necessity is basis the amount spent by a similar charity on a competing organization is matched or exceeded. It’s a very risky method.
iii) Task or goal basis enables PR have a share of the funding set aside to achieve desired end results.
iv) Based on surplus, PR will get a fluctuating figure depending on the point at which the organization breaks down.
Three guidelines may be helpful in budgeting:
- Know the cost of your activities or what you want to buy.
- Communicate the budget in terms of what it costs to achieve specific results.
- Develop a master spreadsheet as well as smaller spreadsheets for individual projects. This helps monitor costs.
- Monitor and Evaluate the Results.
Publics wont judge you on column entries or volume of what you are doing, they will judge you along many other parameters (a balancing scale). Thus, it is important for PR to professionally research, monitor and evaluate PR programmes.
Evaluation of success of PR activities is important in order to learn which activities worked well and which ones should be improved on in future. It creates useful feedback to share with others so that others can learn from your experience.
Evaluation may be internally through colleagues or externally using fact sheet with key areas:
a) Media monitoring
b) Media analysis
c) Online analysis
d) Measuring behavior change
e) Message analysis
f) Benchmarking behavior change
g) Advertising value equivalence.
The six point planning model in summary:
PUBLICS/ AUDIENCE OF PUBLIC RELATIONS
Public or Publics
Are those groups of people, internally and externally with whom an organization communicates. Public relations activities aren’t directed to general public but to carefully selected groups of people who are sub – divisions of the greater general publics.
PR is more discriminating and less wasteful and aims at being more successful communicating certain kinds of messages.
Each organization has its unique publics
The Ten Basic Publics
1. The community
2. Potential employees
4. Suppliers of services and materials
5. Investors – the money market
7. Consumers and users
8. Opinion leaders
9. Trade unions
10. The media
It is worth noting that specific publics are drawn from the above.
- THE COMMUNITY
Depends on type of organization. Different organizations may share same location, each will have its own communication needs and problems e.g. safety, noise, dirt, pollution, etc. for the community, have a good PR policy. A good neighbor policy: PR begins on the doorstep.
- POTENTIAL EMPLOYEES
Potential employees may not seek employment with an organization unless they understand what the does and regard it as a potentially good employer. E.g. school leavers may think working in a bank is dull, so banks have made videos for schools, showing how attractive it is to work in a bank.
Both management and unionizeable staff are important to an organization. By the nature of their work, they may be concentrated in one place or scattered throughout in the organization. Employees represent different salary, wage, social and ethnic groups – their PR needs have been addressed adequately.
Can be of two kinds – those who supply services such as water and energy and those who supply raw materials, components, packaging and professional services. Find out which info you need to give them.
- FINANCIAL PUBLICS
Includes local banks. If it is a public company, know its history in terms of shares on the stock exchange market. How are they performing? Investors will consist of personnel, buyers and investment analysts and he big share buyers. Willingness to buy shares will depend on what is known about the company’s background performance and prospects.
These are the publics who handle goods in bulk between producer and consumer. They vary in kind and number according to organization. They include wholesalers, commission agents, brokers, retailers, etc.
- CONSUMERS & USERS
They include secondary suppliers, e.g. when the product is used in the assembly or production of another, e.g. tyres for motor cars. Specialized PR will be applied to this public because it’s nature deals with limited activities.
- OPINION LEADERS / FORMERS
These include all those who can express opinions that can harm or help an organization. They can be numerous and keep changing depending on the nature of the organization. Consumers, newspapers columnists, TV presenters, etc. this type of public can be a formidable public often prejudiced and ill informed and probably requiring face to face communication.
- TRADE UNIONS
Exert a powerful influence on commercial, industrial and political life. They cannot be ignored because they have qualified personnel.
Needs completely different treatment from that given to the other publics. This is because media are your organization’s direct route to your other publics.
Also media has control over what your publics see and hear in their media.
Thirdly, all media constantly seeks newsworthiness to deliver to their audience it is a mark of your professional success when editors contact you and ask if you have a story for them.
SUMMARY OF PUBLICS
ADVANTAGES OF DEFINING PUBLICS
1. To identify all groups of people relative to a PR programme in order to operate within limits for success monitoring.
2. To establish priorities within scope of the budget and resources available. This minimizes wastes.
3. Helps in selection of media and media techniques which enhances communication effectiveness.
4. Helps one prepare messages in acceptable and effective forms since audience characteristics will have been studied.
DISADVANTAGES OF NOT DEFINING PUBLICS
- Efforts and funds will be scattered indiscriminately in the attempt to reach too many publics.
- Repetition – same message would be issued irrespective of its suitability for different groups of people.
- Time wasting because man hours would not be easily accounted for.
- Objectives would not be achieved because of haphazard movement.
- Management and or client would be dissatisfied.
Publics of National Tourist Board.
- Government officials.
- Distribution e.g. travel agents, package, tour operators, convention organizers.
- Transport operators e.g. rail, air, road.
- Banks, credit card, organization travelers cheque operators.
- Hotel owners – including international hotel groups.
- Motoring organizations – AA, etc, CarTrack
- Visitors – holiday markers, business people, students, conference delegates, sports people, campers.
- Opinion leaders – travel writers, politicians, teachers.
PRESS/ MEDIA RELATIONS
Press relations role is to achieve maximum publication or broadcasting of PR information in order to create knowledge and understanding. It is a tool of PR as a part of PR. Its importance depends on media availability and state of literacy. It is more highly developed in developed, industrialized and urbanized nations where mass media are abundant.
HOW TO ACHIEVE GOOD PR
- Understand the media – know different media schedules for proper timing of handing in PR stories.
- Know essential points about press:
- Editorial policy – E.g. the journals outlook, content, etc.
- Frequency of publication – weekly, daily – no. of editions per day.
- Copy date – latest date to submit material for next issues.
- Printing press – what type?
- Circulation area – so that you much your info to target publics/audience.
- Readership profile – the demographics of those who read that paper.
- Distribution method – retail, mail web, etc.
PRINCIPLES OF GOOD PRESS RELATIONS
a) Service the media – cooperate and create two-way relationship with media.
b) Establish reputation for readability – supply accurate material.
c) Supply a good copy – supply interesting and reproducible pictures properly captioned, use clear and concise language.
d) Be cooperative in providing material – arrange press interviews with personalities when requested.
e) Provide verification facilities – allow journalists to see things for themselves.
f) Build personal relationships with media – should be leased on frankness and mutual professional respect.
It is what interests the reader in developing countries, newsworthiness reader is defined by the political scenes. Different classes (social) pick different news from media. In Britain, for example:
Upper Middle class
The Times, Financial Times
Daily Telegraph, Guardian
Lower Middle Class
Daily Express, Daily Mail
What is Kenyan readership like?
- Information about products may be news but not events that happened days ago.
- Newsworthiness means:
a) Info promises to be interest to reader.
b) Info is worth publishing.
- PR person must be his or her won judge of newsworthiness. As yourself the following questions:
a) Is the story worth printing?
b) Will the pictures improve the page?
c) Why should journalists use their time and attend this function?
A news release creates an image of the organization in the eye of the editors. Bad writing disappoints editors. A good news releases should til the story as the journalists would have written it
GOOD PRESENTATION OF NEWS RELEASES
- Composed in style used by journalists not essay writing its peculiar - *refer to several papers.
- Should be set out in manuscript style, obey printing and not secretarial style.
- Should be appropriate to the journals to which they are sent. Use correct terminologies.
- Should be dispatched in sufficient time for the story to be printed.
HOW TO WRITE RELEASES
Read different newspapers and learn how news are written and presented:
a) Subject – is always stated in the opening words. Its what the organization is doing and not the name of the organization.
b) Opening paragraph is summary of the whole story.
SEVEN POINT FORMULA – SOLAADS
It is used for checking data to be included in a release. It was created by Frank Jefkin (1998).
S – Subject – What is the story about?
O – What is the name of the organization?
L – Location of the organization
A – What new – benefits / advantages
A – applications – who are the users?
D – Details: colors, sizes, prices, other details
S – Source – is it different from locati
LAYOUT OF A NEWS RELEASE USING SOLAADS
NEWS FROM ACE PRODUCTS
- Use short paragraph and sentences
- Keep story to one page if possible
- Avoid superlatives – present factual info only.
- Avoid vague generalization e.g. attractive colours
- Avoid clichés e.g. “unique colours”
- Don’t quote remarks from leaders unless they have something to say.
- Write different versions for different classes of publications e.g. local, technical, etc.
IMPORTANCE OF THE 7 – POINT FORMULA
- It provides data required before writing the release
- It provides a plot with a sequence of info - this creates order.
- It provides a check list for conformation after writing the release.
- The release doesn’t need to have paragraphs it only order content in the release.
OTHER KINDS OF RELEASES
- The publishable seven point formula release
- Could be any topic but adhering to 7 – point
- Don’t make it too lengthy
- Background info story – not intended for publication – intended to update journalist info file.
- Technical release with summary – summary of technical long releases.
- Summary release to company report.
WRITING STYLE OF A NEW RELEASE
- Use short paragraphs – its characteristic of modern publishing style.
- Use 1 page – long stories become repetitive.
- Avoid superlatives as they cause “puffs” present factual info only.
- Avoid vague generalization and explain everything e.g. don’t use terms like money saving.
- Avoid use of clichés
- Don’t quote remarks from leaders unless they have something to say.
- Produce different versions of the release for different classes of publications.
Presentation of news releases depends of individual ** style.
B: FEATURE ARTICLES
It’s unique and differs from a release in the following ways:
1. It’s longer and occupies more space.
2. It’s an exclusive whereas a release is sent to all who may use it.
3. Author may be an authority in the subject area.
4. Require a different literary style to write – imaginatively written.
C SYNDICATE ARTICLES
Exclusive – appear in more than one journal
PRESS EVENTS – all must have news value.
a) Press conference - it’s a meeting of journalists who assemble to receive info which they discuss. Here hospitality is minimal.
b) Press reception - its an organized social event with hospitality.
c) Facility visit – journalists may be taken to visit factory.
THE ROLE OF RESEARCH AND EVALUATION IN PR
According to market research society market, research is a branch of social science which uses scientific methods to collect info about markets for good s and services.
Marketing Research covers all the research techniques used to investigate opinions, attitudes, preferences and motives. Advertising research covers studies of circulations, readership, audiences, etc. This broad collection of techniques is called Marketing Research.
Marketing research is a wider span of studies than marketing research.
The following marketing research kinds are useful to PR:
a) Using published survey findings
b) Commissioned surveys
c) Advertising media research.
d) Commissioning original or primary research.
a) Population / universe - Total number of people relevant to a particular survey.
b) Respondent / interviewee – a person questioned in a survey.
c) Sample – a proportion of the population or universe which is to be questioned.
d) Quota sample – a number of people who are selected by quotas.
e) Random sample – sometimes called interval or probability sample.
f) Characteristics – are peculiarities which are known to exist in the population.
g) Smplaing frame – this is a specification of the kinds of people and their characteristics who will form the sample respondents.
h) Stratified random sample – arrange pop in ** to obtain a sample.
i) Questionnaire – prepared list of queries.
PR TACTICS AND STRATEGIES – CONFERENCES, EXHIBITORS, TRADE FAIRS FUNDRAISING, SPONSORSHIPS
A) EXHIBITIONS AND CONFERENCES
Public and trade exhibitions form a below the line advertising medium their objective is to make known products and services in order to sell as a great deal of selling and order taking occurs at exhibitions.
PR concerns exhibition in the following ways:
- Exhibition promoters use PR on behalf of their shows to inform potential exhibitors and visitors and to support participants in the show. These events are well publicized in media.
- Exhibitors can extend the value of their stand or booth by taking advantage of their press officers’ services. Advance publicity is gained. Pictures and stories obtained during this period save well for PR as they may attract visitors.
- Some stands may be used for PR purposes. The opportunity may be used to create knowledge and understanding rather than to advertise and sell.
KINDS OF EXHIBITIONS
a) Pubic exhibitions
b) Trade exhibitions
c) Outdoor e.g. show
d) Private exhibitions
e) Joint ventures
f) Mobile shows
g) Small exhibition for shop windows, hotel
h) Shopping weeks, etc.
SPECIAL CHARACTERISTICS OF EXHIBITIONS
- They bring the exhibits to the notice of unknown people who are attracted to show as if it were a magnet. The medium has a special lure.
- Person to person contact is offered – frankness witnessed invites credibility.
- Entertainment is an inherent factor thus the exhibitor must not be dull.
- Sometimes conferences and seminars are run in conjunction with exhibitions.
A PR PLAN FOR EXHIBITORS
Anyone taking part in an exhibition has many PR opportunities if prepared to carry out a proper scheme of activity. The PR plan should be decided as soon as the stand space is booked. An ideal procedure may be as follows:
- Contact the exhibition press officers immediately the contract for stand has been signed. Design press questions e.g.
a. What is required to help with advance PR for the event – nature of your organization products, services, etc – plan adequately.
b. What will be the press day events?
c. Who will be the official opener – is this person likely to be interested in your products or services – only a limited pre-selected stands can be visited in this brief tour.
d. What will be the press office facilities: Usually there is a stated number of released and captioned pictures maybe 50 – 100 which the press officer is prepared to accept and display.
- Inform the central office of information if your organization deals with exports for the sake of overseas publicity. This can be done 2/3 months in advance. This publicity costs nothing.
- Sent info about the exhibits to journals pre-viewing the event. This info is often invited by editors and its not necessary to buy ad space.
- Mark dates and submit exhibition catalogue entry by the prescribed date.
- If private press reception is to be held on the stand (or elsewhere) during the run of the show, catering arrangements and the dispatch of invitations must be in good time.
- Individual invitations can be sent to the media to visit the stand. This may include an invitation to attend a demonstration.
- Admission tickets should be ordered from the exhibition promoters for agents, distributors, etc who may be invited to visit the stand to see the products and meet company personnel.
- Reference to the company participation should be featured in the house journal.
- Local media should be informed.
CRISIS COMMUNICATION AND MANAGEMENT
Crisis management is key to every organization because it can destroy the organizations’ reputation if ill prepared.
What is a crisis?
According to White and Mazur a crisis has the following characteristics:
- A high degree of threat to life or the existence of the organization
- Stress is placed upon those responsible for managing the situation (as a result) of the importance of the decisions being made:
Crisis can be caused by;
§ Human error
§ Technological faults
§ Societal reasons e.g. war and terrorism
§ Natural disasters
In crisis situations it may not be the problem per se that causes a critical episode but the response given to the problem
Crisis management can therefore be defined as a systematic approach that engages the whole organization in efforts to avert crises that may affect the firm and manage those that do. Pearson (2002)
Public relations in disaster situations
The first key example is drawn from PR pioneer Ivy Ledbetter. He rescued communication at coal industry in America, Pennsylvania. There were pit disasters and railway accidents. He requested to enter all areas of the organization to get detailed information then organized for press briefing which saved the organization from miscommunication that had earlier been made to the press.
In crisis management there are 3Ps that are important. These are
P – Prevention
These Ps apply to the different kinds of crisis situations that might occur for a particular organization
Many disasters do appear due to poor management. The causes may vary between extremes of casual optimism to selfishness/greed and corruption. The PR person is charged in such circumstances to be the spokesperson, guardian because he/she must guard goodwill and reputation of the organization
Crisis management means planning to deal with the unpredictable. The prevention procedure employed should be based on trying to anticipate what could go wrong. One may build two lists; one with all possible disasters that may happen and another with unlikely disasters to happen.
Examples of possible and unlikely crises affecting a university
One can build the list by running press cutting checks on disasters and add new kinds of hazard to one list as and when they are spotted