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Strategic Planning for Public Relations

Beginning the Journey

Tricia Hansen-Horn and Adam E. Horn

Strategic Planning for Public Relations: Beginning the Journey is written for the next generation of public relations professionals. It takes account of the changing needs of the PR industry, where strategic thinking is needed in abundance but tends to be in short supply among many people who are just launching their careers. This book is designed to address this shortfall by providing a multi-level understanding of strategy to show how it directly correlates to successful public relations. The book’s conversational tone and real world chapter exercises move the reader from insight to strategic vision and application. Exercises at the end of each chapter are designed to help students further explore, reflect on and apply what they have learned. The book’s unique approach to strategy and strategic planning provides the tools for students becoming strategists first and tacticians second – essential criteria for successful public relations professionals.


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3. Communication Complexity: Self-reflexiveness in the Marketplace of Ideas: Becoming an SRC PublicRelations Strategist


3Communication Complexity Self-reflexiveness in the Marketplace of Ideas: Becoming an SRC Public Relations Strategist If this chapter’s title puzzles you, that’s okay. You might even wonder why you have to keep reading. Our answer to that is simple. This chapter is designed to help you think about communication, to think about how you communicate, to think about how you think about how you communicate, to think about how you think about how you think about how you communicate, and so on. If our answer left you confused, stay with us. It illustrates the complex nature of com- munication, which we often take for granted as something really pretty simple. It is not. Successful public relations strategists know this; they get it! This chapter introduces several interesting questions that contextualize communication; in- troduces you to self-reflexiveness and its power to help you think critically and strategically; and describes the arena of public opinion, positioning, and commu- nication as marketplace wrangle about contested terrain. We want to begin this discussion by asking you the following question (be sure to answer it honestly): Have you ever told someone something like, “Our problem is that we don’t communicate ENOUGH. If we communicated MORE we wouldn’t get into arguments”? We bet you have said something like this along the way. Think about it, if you end up in an argument with someone how would MORE communication keep that from happening? More refers to an amount, to how much. If you end up in an argument,...

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