In any communication course, book or blog, you will learn that good writing is the most important skill to have in the mass media field. It is the backbone to creating and communicating messages. Even when a message isn’t disseminated via written word, like oral or visual, there is almost always a written component involved. Because of this, your writing helps to determine how your audience perceives you and the level of its engagement.
Although I am the Broad Magnolias writing director, I’m not biased in thinking that writing is the most vital aspect of our campaign for Youth Oasis. Our client provides a much needed service, emergency care for homeless youth in Louisiana. Because Youth Oasis’ service holds such social magnitude, it’s important that we make sure to carefully communicate its messages to the public.
Through our campaign, we will provide 10 media deliverables for Youth Oasis to utilize. All of these require some form of writing. Some deliverables are more directly dependent on writing, like our event speech, press release, event plan memo, media training guide, social media strategy plan and media kit. The others that don’t necessarily focus on the writing, still include it—our stewardship program, rebranding style guide, promotional video and media contact list. Because writing is so prevalent in our campaign, we must practice all of the aspects of good writing.
There are many opinions out there on what constitutes as good writing. In public relations, good writing effectively and creatively communicates a brand’s message to the audience. In order to accomplish this, practitioners must follow the three golden rules of PR writing:
- Be consistent – Writing must be consistent within its medium. AP style is the standard for writing in all mass communication fields. It must also consistently use the same voice and tone across all messages, in order to help establish a company’s brand.
- Be accurate – Writing needs to contain accurate and honest information, as well as correct spelling and grammar. If writing contains falsities or is confusing to read, a company could lose credibility with its public.
- Be relevant – Whether a piece of writing is informative or entertaining, it has to be relevant to the intended audience’s wants and needs. If a reader doesn’t have use for the message, you will be ignored.
Throughout this campaign, I have made sure that the Broad Magnolias staff follows all of these rules when producing written content. But most importantly, I have kept in mind that we are not writing as individuals, or even as Broad Magnolias PR. We are writing as Youth Oasis. I, and the rest of the Broad Magnolias team, commit to maintain the voice of Youth Oasis and to communicate it’s message—not our own.