Creating a PR Plan

The public relations plan is the basis for your public relations program. Public relations plans can either be company-wide (improving the identity of a company) or they may focus on a specific product line, product or service. Below is a template of what a typical public relation plan would look like.

Executive Summary

Here you put a brief synopsis of what the plan is trying to address, and the timeframe involved in carrying out the plan.

Situation Analysis

Here you describe the situation in context of what the plan is trying to address. What is the current public opinion of the subject of the plan? How does it compare in the public’s eye to its closest competitors?


Here, put the single goal that would directly address the problem or opportunity identified in your situation analysis.


Three or more objectives will probably underlie the goal. These should be specific, measurable and attainable and have a specific deadline for completion.

[Objective 1] [Objective 2] [Objective 3]

Target Audience

List who your primary audiences are that you want to impact through this plan.

[Target Audience 1] [Target Audience 2] [Target Audience 3]

Key Messages

List no more than three key messages you want to impress upon your target audience. Too many messages create “noise” and confusion, reducing the possibility that your most important messages will get through.

[Key Message 1] [Key Message 2] [Key Message 3]


What methods will you use to get your message across? Strategies should include the broad who, how and what of accomplishing your objectives.

[Strategy 1] [Strategy 2] [Strategy 3]


Tactics are the specific action items you will take to support your strategies and meet your objectives. Each should include a deadline and cost estimate.

[Tactic 1] Deadline: Budget:

[Tactic 2] Deadline: Budget:

[Tactic 3] Deadline: Budget:

[Tactic 4] Deadline: Budget:

[Tactic 5] Deadline: Budget:

[Tactic 6] Deadline: Budget:


The total budget will be a single line item; individual expenses will be noted in the Tactics section above.


Once your PR plan is completed, evaluate whether your objectives have been met. If not, determine why. Add these to the measurement section and make it part of your completed PR plan for historical reference. For now, leave the heading in so you don’t forget to add the information later.

This article reprinted with permission from Yvonne Meacham Buchanan,