Public Information Officer


Public Relations

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Unit 5 Application Assignment

Being an effective PIO involves more than just public speaking. Sometimes, you have to market your agency to the public. In many ways, marking your criminal justice agency is similar to marketing a business to the public. The “five Ps of marketing” are people, price, product, promotion and place.

As the PIO marketing your agency, you need to identify your audience (the “people”) and then know what your agency can provide to them (your “product”). In order to market your agency, you have to understand the needs of your audience, and formulate a plan of action that directly addresses their needs.


For each of the two scenarios below:

Identify the audience you will address as PIO and explain their needs.
Then describe the product you can offer to your audience.
Discuss how you will “promote” your product to this audience.
How will you let the audience know what you can offer and how they can obtain the product you are promoting?
Lastly, address the “place” you will choose for this promotion, and explain why you chose this location.
Scenario A

The residents of Sunrise Community Retirement Village are concerned about the drug and gang activity that has expanded outward from the nearby city. They have contacted your agency for ideas on how to protect their neighborhood and its residents from this perceived threat. You, as PIO, have been tasked with responding to this request.

Scenario B

You are the PIO for a police department in a small coastal town on the Atlantic Ocean. Your town is a sleepy little borough from September through April, but from May through August the population quadruples as tourists flood in to soak up the sun, surf, and laid-back beach lifestyle. It is July 3, and record numbers of tourists arrived last week for the July 4 holiday. Unfortunately, a Category 4 hurricane is also wending its way up the coast and is expected to hit with severe force in the next 12 hours. You, as PIO, have been tasked with communicating this to the public while being mindful of the town’s economy as well as the need to keep residents and visitors




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