3 Key Elements for a Successful PR Campaign


The Marist College (my Alma Mater) PRSSA chapter recently entered the Bateman Case Study Competition and asked me to serve as a Professional Adviser.  The competition tests students’ skills, knowledge and creativity when it comes to public relations.  Students are required to produce a full-fledged PR campaign for an innovative personal payment system—which is an exciting and cutting-edge opportunity for any young person ready to embark on a career in PR.

Based on my experience, successful campaigns exceed client expectations, deliver results, and reach intended goals.  As the Professional Adviser, the students have already come to me with several questions and I’d like to pass along the tips I shared with them:

  1. Ask Yourself: Who is the client? When you begin to work on a new project or campaign, due diligence is key. With any project in public relations, research is the foundation for success, so it is important to take the time to become immersed into researching the client’s history, industry and products/services.  This will help you to understand who they are and how to create an appropriate campaign. To take this step a bit further, getting to know the client’s competitors will shed light on industry trends as a whole.
  2. Manage Goals and Expectations: Asking the client what their goals and expectations are is vital to understanding their overall needs. This is where you set the bar for realistic outcomes and identify your professional limits. Be as specific as you can when sketching out goals, and ensure that there are no questions left unanswered or ambiguity. Additionally, it is wise to establish deadlines in order to stay on track and make the client feel at ease with the strategy.
  3. Strategize: Last but certainly not least, creating and implementing a detailed strategy will effectively lead you toward the goal-line.  Strategizing will help you to identify which media platforms and outlets you will use in order to get your client’s message in front of their target audience. You can’t expect to hit your marks and gain media attention unless an effective strategy is in place. In PR, the term “toolkit” is used often–and for good reason! Our team at EZG has various skills and we provide customized PR plans for each client based on which tactics will be most valuable for their brand.  It is important to remember that there isn’t a one size fits all strategy for PR; each campaign is unique.

Developing a creative PR campaign is a project within a project. And although each client’s goals are different, I can guarantee that the above tips will apply to every engagement. You can always count on research and strategic initiatives to guide you in the right direction.

What other steps do you think are important to take when developing a PR campaign? Let us know @ebben_zall.


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5 Responses to “3 Key Elements for a Successful PR Campaign”

  1. Monica Miller Rodgers Says:

    Maria, great advice for any PR campaign. I would also include a Measurement and Evaluation piece. Every campaign should be placing KPIs throughout to see how progress is being made toward the objectives and if any changes need to be made to the strategies and tactics that aren’t working. Good luck to the Marist College PRSSA Chapter!

    • Maria Baez Says:

      Excellent addition, Monica! I agree that evaluating measurement and results throughout a campaign is important as it provides us with an opportunity to alter tactics and strategies if they do not pan out as planned. Thank you for following the Ebben Zall Group blog and for sharing your insight as well!

  2. Suzanne Fulton Says:

    Very sage advice. I would also suggest you incorporate in the managing goals and expectations phase that the all-important budget and written agreement be subtopics in your mentoring.

    • Maria Baez Says:

      Hi Suzanne,
      Thank you for your feedback and suggestions! Developing a strategy that stays within the means of the budget displays attention to detail regarding the client’s wants, goals, and needs. I will definitely be sure to touch upon this throughout the mentoring process with the Marist PRSSA Bateman team. Thank you for following the EZG blog, we hope to hear more from you on future posts as well!

  3. Alex Says:

    I commented on LinkedIn, but thought I would comment here as well. It’s also crucial that the PR team know who the stakeholders and the public’s are. It will make a huge difference in the way the campaign takes shape.

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