Most often you hear about the hard work and the tireless hours required in building a solid case or solving it. They talk about the minute details of copious notes, gathered evidence and interviews conducted to come up with the strategy. Then the careful consideration of tactics needed to go ahead with the arrest and later the court process.
When detectives get that file they start from the bottom up, sometimes, with vague information and they obtain a wealth of knowledge and evidence required for that case to succeed. If they don’t do their research, that necessary ground work, they could potentially make an arbitrary arrest or lose a case in court.
Now, let’s look at Coke when they launched the “New Coke” in 1984 in hopes of broadening their market to compete with the large market of Pepsi. They obviously did not do their research to come up with a strategy and the tactics for success. Coca-cola believed it was a good move on their part to replace the existing Coke with “New Coke.” All they did was blind taste tests and found that people preferred the new product. Unfortunately, when they launched it, they found their long time customers hated it and there were protests around the country.
If they did their research, the necessary back work, they would have come up with a better strategy. If they did what needed doing, they would have discovered that their long-term loyal customers would have felt like they were being sold out. They also would have seen that Coke loyalists did not appreciate being capitalized on. I too would feel the same way if I was a long time loyal customer to a brand and then they suddenly changed it. No one wants to feel like a company is abusing them and shoving a copycat in their face. It was almost a wonder that Coca-Cola was able to make a comeback after this disastrous campaign.
Therefore, I now know, it’s imperative to do the back work in a PR campaign. When you get that assignment, that challenge, you want to investigate it to the finest details in order to identify your key publics, define your key messages and come up with a brilliant strategy and tactics to follow through with your campaign. The tactics ultimately are the procedure or set of manoeuvres you will use to achieve an end, an aim, or a goal. And, you can only figure out what that will be once you’ve done your research, identified key publics, decided on your strategy and then apply your tactics.