The Five P’s of PR | Eclipse Media Group Blog

EMG Blog 5 Ps of PR

By Rachel Peck

Public relations is no small job and it requires a lot of time and dedication to see results over a period of time. PR is an investment for any company and, whether done in-house or with the right PR consulting firm, it’s a long-term investment into developing a deeper relationship with both the media and an audience. Good PR tells a story and while elements of it can be complicated, the basics are fairly simple. Below are our five P’s of PR:

  1. Plan (ahead)
    We run the risk of repeating ourselves, as we talk often of the importance of planning in public relations, but we’d be remiss if we didn’t start with it. In PR, planning is more than just scheduling content, it involves strategy between your marketing and PR team, a social media plan, current events and so much more. Have a crisis communications plan in place, and always try to anticipate what might happen by having alternatives.

    Pro tip: Project management platforms can be your best friends. Software such as Trello, Hootsuite, Slack and Sprout Social can keep you on top of it.
  1. Pace (yourself and your clients)
    As a PR agency, sometimes you find yourself in the position of having to balance what is the right amount of content and what is saturation. Especially when you have a client that has a lot of news and announcements, pacing that news and being strategic about your outreach is vital. An over saturation runs the risk of “using up” any interest from your audience or the media. Also, don’t be afraid to pace yourself as well – it can be exciting to work on new projects or onboard new clients, but make sure you’re also balancing internally to avoid project burnout.

    Pro tip: Sometimes looking at upcoming content in a visual, calendar format is helpful. Have a planning session with your client and map out important news announcements and their other marketing efforts to see where some content holes need to be filled and where possible over saturation might be happening.
  1. Pitch (but not too often)
    So you’ve planned, paced and now it’s time to pitch. This is where it gets even trickier, as many writers and editors are inundated with pitches 24/7 – especially if it’s event or trade show season. To make sure you’re not wasting your time and theirs, do your research on writers and their beats. It’s simple, if you’re pitching a tech story, don’t reach out to a lifestyle writer.

    Pro tip: Step outside of email when it comes to pitching and consider social media. Many writers and editors are on Twitter and LinkedIn and often send out last minute requests for story contributions.
  1. Proof (read)
    Here we again run into the possibility of repeating ourselves, but we can’t stress enough the importance of this step – attention to detail. So much of public relations and content creation is reviewing, editing and massaging the content to formulate just the right message. While writing a pitch email, press release, blog or social caption might take the cake for most work, taking the time to ensure your final product is solid demonstrates that you are thoughtful and purposeful in your communications and messaging.

    Pro tip: Grammarly is a great resource for double checking the spelling and grammar of any piece of content.
  1. Publish (it’s more than hitting send)
    Once you’ve submitted your article, distributed your press release or completed an interview, you shouldn’t forget it after you hit send. Once it’s published, make sure both you and your clients are highlighting coverage on social media, and tracking it appropriately.

    Pro tip: There are several ways to track coverage for either yourself or your clients. Consider a program such as Coverage Book where you input links and it generates a visual “book” to review. To ensure visibility on social media, share client wins on your channels, but also send them to your client’s social media team so they can make timely announcements as well.

    While we stuck to just five elements of public relations in this blog, it’s obviously so much more. However, sometimes we all need a refresher of the basics – whether you’ve been in PR for decades or are just starting out. In PR, a plan, a well-written pitch and a great piece of content is sometimes all you need to get that win for your client or yourself.

    Looking for PR and marketing tips? Read more on our blog.