Can you set up a complete PR campaign with just one tool? It’s perfectly possible. The PESO kit helps you raise your communication strategy to a higher level. What is more, it also makes brainstorming about campaigns a lot of fun.

We all get stuck in fixed habits and routines from time to time. We stay within the safety of our comfort zone and fall back on what we know. PR teams also get into a rut sometimes. All too often, we see mediocre PR campaigns without much sparkle. A press release here, a brief article there: all well and good, but there could and should be more!

The PESO model makes it easier to put the colour back into your PR. PESO stands for Paid, Earned, Shared and Owned:

  • Paid media

Paid media not only includes large billboards and print adverts but also advertising and sponsored content on social media. The big advantage of social media ads? You get maximum effect for just a little money.

  • Earned media

These are the traditional PR channels which have been familiar for years. Interviews in general and/or trade media, press releases, guest and opinion pieces, press conferences, newsjacking… There are all kinds of possibilities in this field.

  • Shared media

Shared media focuses on sharing content, which mainly takes place on social media. Almost everyone is on social media these days, and that means your target audience is too. So why wouldn’t you make the most of the opportunities available?

  • Owned media

This is the content which you create yourself and place on your own channels such as your own website, specific landing pages, blogs etc.


Combining the various types of media allows you to create an integrated campaign which gives you far greater media coverage and increases the clout of your campaigns. After all, good PR involves far more than just developing good press relations. Fully-fledged cross-media campaigns help you to strengthen and expand your company’s reputation. This allows you to highlight your expertise and help your company to grow into a trusted authority.

But how can you actually apply this PESO model in practice? Well, to make it all a bit more visual, we have developed a kit containing 62 cards. These are classified into 4 colours, one for each type of media. Each card features a communication channel for the distribution of content, with a brief explanation of the channel.

You can use the PESO kit throughout the development of your PR campaigns, as the set also includes 6 preparation cards and 3 analysis cards. Instead of writing out detailed communication plans, the cards allow you to keep everything efficient and clearly organised:

  1. Brainstorming: collecting ideasWhen brainstorming, the kit serves as a light-hearted tool to help you tap into the creativity of your team and think outside the box. It boosts the involvement of your team and makes the brainstorming session much more active.

    Tip: when brainstorming, always start with owned media. After all, you have complete control over this. Think about the content (topics) you would like to publish on your own channels over the next few months. Our content calendar can help you with this.

    Then you can go through the other cards and think up concrete ideas about how to distribute the content of your own channels through paid, earned and shared media. An interview with the CEO on a relevant topic? Instead of doing the interview yourself and publishing it on your company website, you could give the scoop to a particular journalist. Once the article has been published, you can distribute it further on your own channels and social media. This gives the interview far greater impact than merely posting it on your own website.

    And don’t forget: any idea, no matter how crazy it might seem, is welcome during the brainstorming session. After all, it might just form the basis of an exceptional PR campaign.

  2. Four circles: organising ideas using the PESO modelGathered enough ideas during the brainstorming session? Then it’s time to make a selection. Draw the four PESO circles on a sheet of paper, or better still on a whiteboard.Group the ideas in the various circles and decide which ideas are the most usable. Draw a line between the ideas in order to visualise the connections between them. This allows everyone to see the bigger picture, quite literally.
  3. Scrum method: checking progressYou have your communication plan, now you just need to implement it. Structure the tasks using a scrum method: who is doing which task and what is its status? Then all you need to do is mark the tasks on the to-do list as ‘done’ and measure the success of the campaign.

Keen to get started with the PESO model yourself? All the possible PESO tactics can be found in our card game, which serves as a source of inspiration or a set of reminders. You can buy the kit here.