Chapter 1- “What is Public Relations?”

Public Relations: Strategies and Tactics by Wilcox & Cameron (Amazon.com)

The Challenges of Public Relations

  • Working in public realtions gives you the opportunity to dabble in several fields at the same time.
  • Most days are busy, but it is because a lot is accomplished.

Global Scope

  • Public Relations careers are at an all time high.
  • Free market economies are expanding.

A Variety of Definitions

  • People often define public relations by some of its most visible techniques and tactics, such as publicity in a newspaper, a television interview with an organization’s spokesperson, or the appearance of a celebrity at a special event.
  • Public relations is a process involving many subtle and far-reaching aspects.

Public Relations as a Process

  • Research. What is the problem or situation?
  • Action (program planning). What is going to be done about it?
  • Communication (execution). How will the public be told?
  • Evaluation. Was the audience reached and what was the effect?
  • Step 1: Research and Analysis– This consists of inputs that determine the nature and extent of the public relations problem or opportunity. These may include feedback from the public, media, reporting, and editorial comment, analysis of trend data, other forms of research, personal experience, and government pressures and regulations.
  • Step 2: Policy Formulation- Public relations personnel, as advisors to top management, make recommendations on policy and what actions should be taken by the organization.
  • Step 3: Programming- Once a policy or action is agreed on, public relations staff begin to plan a communications program that will further the organization’s objectives.
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