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Applying Quality Standards to PR Campaigns and Communications Strategies

Applying Quality Standards to PR Campaigns and Communications Strategies

A client of mine recently said “find art in what you do for a living and the customers will find you”. This got me thinking about what it takes to achieve true artistry in what you do professionally and whether it is even attainable.

Malcolm Gladwell talks about the “10,000-hour rule”, claiming that the key to achieving world-class expertise in any skill requires practising that skill the correct way for approximately 10,000 hours. And the Japanese subscribe to “Kaizen”, a systematic process of continuous incremental improvement to achieve dramatic advancement over the longer term.

While it may be a moot point as to what is takes to achieve true artistry, a commitment to, and application of, quality standards to every step of your methodology, is one way of ensuring you are giving your customers the best possible service.

The following quality standards provide a basic guide to assess the veracity of a public relations campaign or communications strategy and from which a process for improvement can be leveraged:

Strategic dimension

Quality standard


The problem is well defined and the communication opportunity is clear.


Relevant internal and external policies and procedures with which the strategy must align are identified.


Research methodologies, tools and techniques used to understand the problem are appropriate.

The research provides a foundation to develop strategic objectives and measurable benchmarks.


Internal strengths and weaknesses, and opportunities and threats are detailed.


Economic, social, environmental, political and reputational risks, and their mitigating actions are identified.


The objectives are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound.

Relevant key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure the success of objectives are identified.


Target audiences are specifically defined in terms of their interest, influence and impact, and their values and positions are clear.


The overarching strategic approach is aligned with research findings and objectives, and supports the organisation’s business objectives.


Key messages are persuasive, stand-alone and include a call to action.


Mediums are accessible, convenient and preferred by the target audiences.


The budget is clear and resources are allocated.


The execution plan is directly linked to the overarching strategy.

The sequence and timing of tools and tactics are mapped out.


KPIs are regularly monitored and evaluated for accountability and continuous improvement.

The actual results are compared against the SMART objectives.

Logical conclusions are drawn and recommendations for any future actions are documented.

All components of the strategy met acceptable industry standards and codes of practice.


©Ros Weadman 2019

Ros Weadman is the creator of the BrandCred™ Model, a system for building credibility and trust in a brand, founder of Marcomms Australia and author of BrandCode®, a PR and marketing guide.


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