By Richard Goldstein

To be successful in business, a PR agency must have a clear set of objectives (a game plan, if you will). Some would call this a “strategic plan.” A strategic plan is a long-term business plan addressing broad issues of what a company’s management wants it to become and how it is to do business.

Four Kinds of Business Plans

There are as many as four variations on the basic idea of business planning. Each serves a different purpose and results in a separate document. Large, sophisticated companies tend to all of these different kinds of planning. Small agencies usually do one plan that combines features of the four variations.

The four kinds of planning are (1) strategic planning, (2) operational planning, (3) budgeting, and forecasting. They differ according to three attributes: the length of the planning period, the kinds of issues addressed and the level of financial detail projected.

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