What are public relations instruments and how to use them?

What is crisis PR

Public relations tools, if used well, bring many benefits. They can help the company establish relationships with customers, promote products and services, and complement sales activities. PR gives news a positive feel and is often seen as more neutral and objective than other forms of reporting on company activities. Why? Because instruments public relations they allow you to adjust the message so that it sounds as if it was created by an entity independent of the seller.

Building and maintaining a good reputation among your audience is a complex and continuous process. Without effective PR it is very difficult to get to target audienceand even more so to influence its opinions and decisions. However, once the relationship with the target group is finally established, it must be maintained to keep it at a high level. It's a mechanism that works similarly to human relationships. When two people lose touch, they disappear from each other's lives, no matter how close they used to be. The same happens to the target audience if the established relationship is not maintained. How not to let that happen? Using the appropriate instruments he recommends public relations agency.

Typical public relations instruments

In order to build a relationship with clients and maintain it at a high level, PR specialists use a variety of tools and techniques. Here are some of those we use in Commplace:

press releases - their content is distributed to recipients free of charge by various types of media. It has been confirmed many times that they have a much greater impact on the audience than advertisements. This is because most people simply consider such information to be more reliable than paid advertising. The press release is therefore one of the oldest and, at the same time, the most effective PR tools.

running a company blog -  thanks to this PR tool, a company can easily interact with website users. How it's working? You can ask your readers questions at the end of your post to encourage them to start a conversation. Another way is to allow comments and opinions to be left. By reviewing and responding to readers' comments, companies can build a good relationship with their audience, build trust, and gain valuable insight into what customers are looking for. Public relations instruments such as blog allow you to create and maintain relationships with clients and establish two-way communication.

presence in social media. It would be difficult to find companies today that, realizing that public relations instruments are their powerful weapon, do not use the benefits of the Internet. Social media has become one of the obvious ways to reach your audience and establish direct communication with consumers, investors and other target groups.

Public relations instruments, if used well, have many benefits.

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CSR an increasingly popular PR tool

Companies today must not only achieve financial results, but also show how they have a positive impact on society. Fortunately, they have numerous public relations instruments at their disposal. In the face of changing consumer expectations, they more and more often decide to take actions as part of corporate social responsibility. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) can make a significant contribution to increasing customer and customer engagement employee involvement. Incorporating CSR into your business model means reaching out to the public in a new way. A way that makes people think more about your business, tell others about it, and ultimately buy more.

Paying attention to ethical practices such as sustainable sourcing of raw materials, fair treatment of employees, and charitable activities can draw audience attention to commendable principles, and therefore to the company that follows them. According to some research, 90% interviewees say they would stop buying the product if they found out about the company's irresponsible business practices. On the other hand, as many as 92% would buy a product with social and / or environmental benefits if the opportunity arose. These numbers indicate a growing public awareness. This means that public relations instruments should include actions for corporate social responsibility. The implementation of CSR policy today is not only beneficial, but even becomes obligatory.

Which public relations instruments to choose?

The choice of PR instruments depends on the goal you plan to achieve, the preferences of your target group and the budget you have at your disposal. If you have indicated several target groups when planning your PR activities, the instruments you will apply should be grouped into programs appropriate for each of them.

Internal PR instruments focus primarily on the ongoing transfer of information, communication about changes and the course of processes taking place inside the organization, and building relationships between employees. For this purpose, mailings, internal communicator or intranet, meetings with employees, company events and all activities related to the so-called employer branding.

Public relations tools

On the other hand, activities directed outside the company are aimed at improving the image and building awareness of the brand's existence. These include maintaining contact with the media, organizing external events and conducting broadly understood communication with the environment.

public relations

An intranet or other internal communicator allows direct contact between employees of all levels of the organization. Mailing, in turn, allows you to maintain direct contact both between employees and groups that constitute an important environment for the organization (media, local entrepreneurs, city residents). Face-to-face meetings allow you to build more lasting relationships and react directly to opinions and feedback. In turn, corporate events allow employees to integrate with the company, and are also an important instrument helping to achieve specific image, information, educational and sales goals. Social media and the website, due to their universality and popularity, are ideal for building the image and reputation of the company.

The most common mistakes in the use of public relations instruments

The most common mistakes in the use of various types of PR instruments include:

1. No information

The worst mistake an organization can make is not communicating. And although every year more and more modern tools are created to improve the transfer of information, it is still an area that is a real challenge for companies. Lack of information creates chaos, increases stress, reduces crew productivity, leads to rumors and suspicions, and increases the feeling of distrust of the organization.

2. One-way communication

Effective communication is not about giving orders and publishing relevant messages. It is a dialogue to which we invite both employees, representatives of the market environment and potential customers. Regardless of what tools and instruments you use, you must always consider the possibility of providing feedback. Closing oneself to a discussion not only creates a bad atmosphere, but also results in a lack of trust in a given organization.

3. Sweeping under the rug

Many organizations cannot talk about problems, much less admit their mistakes. However, this is exactly what the environment expects of them. Crises are born out of ignorance. Discussions on sensitive topics not only prove the authenticity of a given organization, but also help to develop mechanisms to help avoid such situations in the future.

4. Wrong choice of instruments

Communication must be tailored to the needs and preferences of the target group. If we choose the wrong PR instruments, our message may turn out to be ineffective. The selection of PR tools should be preceded by an analysis that will clearly indicate with which tools we can effectively influence the behavior of individual interest groups.

5. Lack of control

In order to be able to communicate effectively with employees, the market environment or customers, it is not enough that we provide them with access to specific tools. They should also be trained in the capabilities of a given tool and the rules that their users follow. Nobody wants to receive hundreds of unnecessary e-mails, participate in unsophisticated meetings, or receive information that does not interest them.

Public relations instruments inside the company

The saying "a happier workforce equals a more productive workforce" is as true as ever, and has repeatedly shown the benefit of greater worker creativity. According to a study by Dale Carnegie and MSW Research, companies hiring employees who feel more engaged outperform companies that simply hire employees, by as much as 202%!

There is a saying: the fish rots from the head. Therefore, it is definitely worth using instruments public relations also inside your own company. After all, employees are brand ambassadors. Their corporate image is ultimately a reflection of the company in the wider community. Dissatisfied employees are definitely not the best evidence.

Each company is at a different stage and pursues different goals at a given time. Which public relations instruments will most effectively help you achieve yours? contact us. We are happy to suggest.

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