How to write a media plan: Setting goals


Welcome to week two of Hearsay’s six-week, tip-driven program focused on helping you create a top-notch media plan. Each week, we’ll show you one of the six most important elements every plan should include to ensure that your campaign is set up for success. This week, we’re all about teaching you to be a #goalgetter and discussing setting goals.

Before we dive in, don’t forget to read week one’s post on how to perform research and develop an accurate SWOT analysis. In order to stay updated, you also can sign up for our newsletter and follow us on Instagram for regular updates.

Now, on to setting goals.

What’s a goal?

Goals are the means to express the end points towards which effort is directed. They are broad, relatively abstract, and may be difficult to quantify,

For example, a goal from one of our most recent client campaigns at Hearsay was for a client to increase our market share in the endurance apparel industry.

Types of goals

With PR, there are generally three distinct types of goals. They are:

  • Reputation management goals, which deal with the identity and perception of the organization. A goal that aims to improve target audience opinions would be an example.
  • Relationship management goals, which focus on how the organization connects with its stakeholders. A goal that aims to improve communication with a target audience would be an example of a relationship management goal.
  • Task management goals, which are concerned with achieving tasks. A goal that calls for increasing the attendance on a social media event would be an example of this goal.


Not sure where to start with deciding on your goals? Stick with the SMART acronym to help make sure your goals are effective.

  • Specific: Define your goal clearly so you can communicate it easily to others. This will also help you clarify the purpose of your strategy.
  • Measurable: Create objectives that can be measured. This will help record your progress and determine if you achieved your goal.
  • Actionable: Break down your goal into short term objectives and set realistic time frames around them. This helps you to achieve your goal in a reasonable amount of time.
  • Realistic: Don’t set impossible goals. Be realistic about the work you can do in a given amount of time and set objectives that reflect this. Use previous goals and achievements as a guideline for setting objectives.
  • Time-based: Set a final date for your goal to be achieved.

By setting SMART goals for your media plan, you will know what you need to achieve, when it must be achieved, and how you will achieve it.

Ready to get started? Download our free PR Plan template as your guide.

Have you set realistic PR goals for 2017?

Want more helpful tips like the ones above plus more? Check out The Buzz: A Media Darling’s Guide to Press Coverage or sign up for exclusive Hearsay content.