One of the most important measures of success in public relations is research.  You may think to yourself, “Why should I do research?  My instincts are good and I have experience on my topic.”   In the business world, that is not enough.  Since public relations plays a management role in an organization research becomes very important in identifying issues, engaging in problem solving, managing and preventing crisis, creating good internal policies, and building a good relationship with audiences (Broom & Dozier, 1990).

Research is important when it comes to communication.  Unlike journalism, which is a one way street of providing information to publics, PR is a two-way relationship between its organization and its publics.  We all know that in any type of relationship a two-way street of communication makes things work better.  Research puts us in touch with our publics allowing us to have a better understanding of their needs and behaviors.  It allows us to have a better understanding of the organization too, and is helpful in strategic planning to meet objectives and goals.  By conducting good research we can ensure that our intended message reaches a target audience comprised of those who want, need or care about the information we are trying to share (Public Relations v. 1.0, n.d.).

Another very important reason research is important is money.  As stated previously, research helps us strategize and target specific audiences thereby preventing public relations professionals from wasting money communicating to the wrong people.  Solid research also helps us to create a better budget since we have facts to back up our campaign plan, and that makes management happy.

Finally, by doing research we are able to better measure outcomes and show results related to the work we’ve put in.  These are some of the most important reasons why public relations research is necessary if you want to be a successful public relations professional.

Broom, G. M., & Dozier, D. M. (1990). Using research in public relations: Applications to program management. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall

Public Relations v. 1.0 Public Relations Research: The Key To Strategy Chapter 8. (n.d.) Retrieved from http://2012books.lardbucket.org/books/public-relations/s09-public-relations-research-the-.html

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