Hiring a PR firm can be a challenging task, especially for those businesses that require a complex range of services from a public relations agency. Same as you would choose other business partners, there is a simple yet effective process to follow, in order to make sure that you find a company which suits your needs, and the needs of your audience. Having a small “DO’s and DON’Ts” lists can go a long way in assuring you that you are making the right decisions and that the PR firm you are considering can live up to the challenge of representing your brand and business. Here are some essential ground rules that need to be considered when making a decision:
Establishing a Budget and Zooming in on a Company Culture Path
The first things you need to do when hiring a PR firm is to establish a budget for your public relations needs. Then, design a draft for the path you want your company to be following. However, keep in mind that you need to be a bit flexible about this and open to suggestions from your future PR company.
Don’t Make Generalizations
Most entrepreneurs make the mistake of deciding on a PR firm based on the general knowledge of the industry, without thinking about the importance of their brand’s identity, and of how essential it is to find a company that can properly represent and help grow your business. Sure, general knowledge is good to have, but when searching for a new PR firm, make sure that you are looking for a company that fits your needed profile.
Ask about the Firm’s Key Area of Expertise
Most PR companies have established areas of expertise, an aspect that needs to be considered before hiring them. Discuss this with the firm’s manager and make sure that their key area is the one you need for the development of your brand and for representing your company in relation with the media and general public.
Don’t Ask to Interview Past Clients
One of the most common mistakes made in the industry is that most people looking for a PR firm desire to get in touch with the firm’s past clients. Disregarding the fact that all these collaborations are highly confidential, and that asking for these kind of details is not at all professional. The best thing is to go online and look for the firm’s activity, and get your information from business portals, local media websites or PR communities.
Talk about Your Public Relations Needs
When hiring a PR firm, if you choose the right one, chances are that their professional strategists will know exactly what measures to take for your brand and business. But that does not mean that your point of view does not need to be known. Discuss these aspects from the beginning and let the PR firm know what you want from your partnership; what are your goals and where do you want to see your business in a few years.
Independent of your brand’s niche, your partnership with an experienced PR firm is of utmost importance and should be treated with professionalism and engagement in order to achieve the best results. If you have any questions about the steps you need to follow when hiring a PR firm, or want to know more about our services, please don’t hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.