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How to Write a PR Brief: Why Great Briefs Deliver Great PR

When freelancers are excited about the work you want to do, you'll attract the best people for the job and get the best results.

A good brief is the basis for any PR engagement - it's like a roadmap, driving the direction of travel and ensuring everything stays on track.

A brief forms the foundation of the work you'll do with your freelance PR and educates them on what you hope to achieve, and over what timescale. 

The more they know from the start, the happier they'll be that this project is the right one for them. Then they'll get excited about the potential for it. And when they are excited and picturing what success will look like, well, the results they deliver will be far better.

It's actually not as daunting as it sounds if you follow our steps in this guide. To make briefing less of a pain and far more effective, here are five key things to consider.

Further down, there’s a list of some extra questions to consider, that should spark your own thoughts too.

Specialist drawing with ruler on paper

A PR consultant is the architect of someone's dream campaign, but first you'll need to have the goals and parameters for them to play with and work with. They can then create the vision and the blueprint.

1) Who is your audience?

Are you aiming to attract investors, new business leads or a new customer demographic? Knowing who you are trying to reach shapes the PR approach and it should be defined within the brief for a talented freelance PR specialist to advise you on, flesh out further, and run with.

2) What are your values?

Do you know exactly what your brand is all about? What your values are? Your key messages? Your tone of voice? Your purpose? This will help your PR design and deliver a campaign or programme that feels like ‘you’. Sell your passion here and you’ll find someone who matches it!

3) Where are the deliverables?

Expectation setting is key and you'll eventually want measurable outcomes to work with. So have a think in this initial brief what success means to you. In your head, what do you see? Write that down. No idea is too fanciful or too small. It's your campaign after all.

4) Why are you doing PR?

The why can be tough to fathom sometimes. Luckily we have an article to help you drill down further into that. You'll find it here. But the why really does hold the key to everything going forwards - so start by asking WHY you do what you do, and WHY you love it.

4) When will you be happy?

How would you describe your end goal? To be famous? To raise funding? To leave a legacy? To reach new audiences? Or to beat your competition? Decide what would make you happy and make sure the PR knows. It will be their job to achieve it!

Your PR brief is the most important document in the whole process of finding the right freelancer to work with - it sets the scene, it sets the tone and it sets the mission.

A PR consultant is the architect of someone's dream campaign, but first you'll need to have the goals and parameters for them to play with and work with. They can then create the vision and the blueprint.

Here are some further quick-hitting thoughts and questions on what to include:

  • A short description of your brand or professional role
  • What you want to achieve from PR - and why you want to do it
  • Whether you have done any PR before and, if so, what was it?
  • Are you looking for on-going support, or a project with a start and end date?
  • What does the audience you hope to reach look like?
  • Details on your main competitors and crucially, what differentiates you from them
  • What the ultimate PR success looks like to you
  • When do you want your PR relationship to begin
  • Whether you have a budget in mind - read more about that here
  • What expertise you'll need - you can find more about the different experts here
  • An idea on the seniority of the person you'd like to be working with
  • What skills you'd like your PR to have in their locker - find out more about that here
  • A quick thought on what attributes - like creativity or planning - you hope they possess
  • Any company documents, links to past coverage, to your website or videos to watch too
  • Who is the PR person in your head? Write a profile of them and outline that in the brief

And finally…

Ultimately, your brief will lead to a proposal. Ideally a few proposals, each with their own perspectives on what they can help you to achieve. 

Being clear in your thoughts, asking for the right examples of their previous work and outlining the ideas you're expecting, will save crucial time.

Don’t forget to tell them the format needed too. And think about a date when you'll need all their proposals back by, one that gives you enough time to read them all, feedback and ask questions before you make that key decision on who to hire. 

For more hints on choosing between proposals, check out this piece we've written. 

Remember, the more thorough your brief, the quicker you will find the right trusted freelance PR partner on Nibble’s network - and that will make us very happy indeed. 

Even if you haven't written a brief before, don't worry, our AI-powered platform will guide you through the process in 3 simple steps. Here’s a 1-minute video to show you how quick and easy that is:

Click here to post a new brief in minutes and start receiving matches and proposals from our highly recommended UK PR freelancer network.

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