The PR BlogPublic RelationsPR StrategyYour Bullshit PR Strategy is Cringe, Sorry

Your Bullshit PR Strategy is Cringe, Sorry

How to write a 1-page strategy that will help you win.

Cover photo: @jerrysilfwer

A bull­shit PR strategy is just cor­por­ate cringe.

Strategy is an over­used and inflated term, espe­cially in PR and marketing. 

Many con­flate strategies with spe­cif­ic plans, codes of con­duct, mis­sion state­ments, vis­ions and val­ues, etc. 

Those are the hall­marks of a bull­shit PR strategy.

Here goes:

Your Bullshit PR Strategy is Cringe

In short: Many PR strategies are cringe-worthy.

A strong PR strategy should out­line how you expect to out­per­form your com­pet­it­ors. Most of everything else should go into your PR plan instead.

A strategy is how you win at some­thing. Nothing more, noth­ing less. Otherwise, your strategy is bullshit.

But we often get this wrong.

To put it as simply as possible:

Many PR strategy doc­u­ments and present­a­tions are filled with any­thing but the essen­tial parts needed to make the PR strategy work.

The why, where, when, how and what are import­ant ques­tions to answer, but you can save them when cre­at­ing an actu­al plan. Many people talk about “strategies” when they mean “plans” — and vice versa.

Identifying a Good PR Strategy

How To Create a PR Strategy - Spinning Top - Doctor Spin - The PR Blog
Spin for the win.

How To Identify a Good PR Strategy

Your PR strategy should answer one simple question:

  • Does this strategy provide a guid­ing prin­ciple for how our organ­isa­tion should win the war for atten­tion, trust, and sup­port in our com­pet­it­ive landscape?

If your PR strategy fails to answer this ques­tion, it’s just orna­ment­a­tion (i.e. cor­por­ate cringe).

Learn more: Your Bullshit PR Strategy is Cringe, Sorry

How To Write a Good PR Strategy

1-Page Strategy - Doctor Spin - The PR Blog
Keep it clean. (Photo: @jerrysilfwer)

How to Write a 1‑Page Strategy

My inspir­a­tion for writ­ing “no-bull­shit” strategies comes from the clas­sic Good Strategy, Bad Strategy by Richard Rumelt. The 1‑page strategy focuses on how to win.

Here’s how you can write a 1‑page strategy that fits one page — using the myth­ic­al battle between David and Goliath as an analogy:

1. Analysis

  • David can­’t beat Goliath using his size or raw strength, but he has an advant­age in speed and accur­acy from a distance.

2. Guiding Principle

  • David should­n’t engage in close com­bat but rather use tools that will allow him to strike from a distance.

3. Coherent Actions

  • David should­n’t use any heavy armour because that would slow him down.
  • David should use a sling­shot, a weapon he is famil­i­ar with and can strike from a distance.
  • David should lever­age the sur­prise ele­ment and not advert­ise his advant­age beforehand.

If you write 1 – 2 clear sen­tences per bul­let, your strategy should fit nicely on one page.

Read also: The Easy Street PR Strategy: Keep It Simple To Win


Please sup­port my blog by shar­ing it with oth­er PR- and com­mu­nic­a­tion pro­fes­sion­als. For ques­tions or PR sup­port, con­tact me via jerry@​spinfactory.​com.

PR Resource: More PR Strategies

Doctor Spin’s PR Strategies

Make sure to explore a wide vari­ety of PR strategies for every dif­fer­ent type of situ­ation and challenge:

Learn more: How to Create a PR Strategy That Actually Works

Jerry Silfwer
Jerry Silfwerhttps://doctorspin.net/
Jerry Silfwer, alias Doctor Spin, is an awarded senior adviser specialising in public relations and digital strategy. Currently CEO at KIX Index and Spin Factory. Before that, he worked at Kaufmann, Whispr Group, Springtime PR, and Spotlight PR. Based in Stockholm, Sweden.

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