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Public Relations Strategic Planning

A Comprehensive, Behavioral and Measurable Strategic Planning Approach

This course is not currently available. Email the Professional Development Department to inquire about future availability of this program.

Category: Communication Strategy

Too often our strategic plans are short-changed by time, budget and know-how. This workshop will teach you how to build a comprehensive, behavioral strategic plan, plus give you an opportunity to begin to develop the framework of a strategic plan you can use.

Bring your current organization and department goals. We will identify priority audiences, opinion leaders, behavioral goals, latent readiness and research needs before doing an environmental scan. After learning about relevant strategies and theories for achieving behavioral goals critical for effective outcomes, we will identify and outline activities and a timeline. Finally, we will determine how to evaluate the plan to prove its worth.

This workshop is designed for practitioners who are responsible for their department’s (or client’s) strategic plan, or are a key voice in its development. You will learn:

  • Critical, need-to-have elements in an effective strategic plan.
  • What elements in your strategic communications plan needs buy-in from other parts of your organization.
  • How to focus your plan on outcomes rather than outputs.
  • How effective evaluation starts with setting quality behavioral goals at the start.
  • Sample plans that will be explored in order to understand a variety of approaches that can be taken given differing organizational styles and cultures.

The workshop will be divided as follows:

  • Preliminaries for a solid plan with buy-in from those to whom you report.
    • Aligning departmental goals with organization goals.
    • Prioritizing audiences.
    • Identifying specific behavioral goals.
  • Building the core plan.
    • Understand seminal behavioral strategies and techniques necessary for building an effective plan.
    • Identify latent readiness to act (or not act).
    • Develop a continuum of behaviors by audience.
    • Brainstorm triggering events both manufactured and naturally occurring.
    • Blend triggers and activities to move behavior.
    • Design methodology for evaluation along the way.
  • Narrow and refine.
    • Prioritize and prune a plan given budget restrictions, manpower and timelines.


Stacey Smith, APR, Fellow PRSA, partner, Jackson Jackson & Wagner

Photo of Stacey Smith, APR, Fellow PRSA For more than 30 years, Smith has counseled organizations large and small, multinational Fortune 50 companies to small nonprofits, on how to motivate mutually supportive behaviors from their stakeholders. She is editor of Public Relations Practices, Managerial Case Studies and Problems, a leading case text in the field, with its 8th edition due for publication January 2013. Her biggest kicks come from helping organizations build stronger internal relationships so as to achieve greater overall success.

Participants earn 2.0 APR Maintenance Credits for a one-day course. For more information on Accreditation maintenance, visit


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