Businesses, entrepreneurs and influencers all around the world are increasingly looking for PR agencies to help develop their brand awareness and reputation. When you’re developing a relationship with a PR company, it’s incredibly important that you work together to maximize the investment that you’re putting into that relationship. This will allow you not only to make sure that you’re getting the best results possible, but also to take your publicity budget further as you continue to work with them.
Here are five strategies that I’ve found can help clients maximize their relationships with a PR agency.
1. Identify Your Goals Upfront
What is the purpose of you engaging a publicist? Are you looking to increase sales? Get investors on board? Generate leads? By asking these questions and working out your goals upfront, you can ensure that you and your PR agency are on the same page right from the get-go.
Aside from giving your PR firm valuable information that canhelp it better reach your target audiences, identifying and communicating your goals upfront also can help the PR firm give you insight into other potential projects or goals, which allows you to develop a better ongoing relationship that can only stand to benefit you.
2. Be Transparent
Whether it’s your revenue, the number of employees you have or your product’s attributes, you have to be transparent with the PR agency you are working with. A PR agency has the critical expertise to harness people’s attention and spread awareness of your company; however, if it catches you not being completely honest, then neither party benefits. In fact, it can do considerable damage to your brand. Whatever you communicate to your publicist needs to be true and correct so they can present the best possible version of you.
3. Trust Your PR Agency To Work In Your Best Interests
If working in the industry has taught me anything, it’s that clients sometimes need to let the PR company push their boundaries. Yes, clients can bring great ideas to the table, but keep in mind that you’re working with people who sometimes have decades of experience. They know what works, and they typically know how best to help you. PR agencies are capable of crafting angles that will not only work the first time around, but also continue to get you the results you require. They also know which publications and journalists are going to be a good fit for you right from the start. So the easiest thing to do is just trust that they will do their jobs the best they can.
4. Be Responsive
It’s a fast-paced world nowadays. With so many options to reach each other instantaneously, communication has never been easier. We all have trouble keeping on top of our notifications sometimes, but it’s imperative when you are working with a PR agency to take steps to be as responsive as possible.
When working with a PR agency, once your story is pitched to the media, a journalist may need to speak with you right away because they are on a deadline. Not responding to emails, phone calls or texts from your PR agency when they need information from you or have arranged for the press to speak with you can be detrimental. Being responsive not only helps develop a better relationship between you and your PR agency, but it also goes a long way in helping you accomplish your goals.
There are so many easy things you can do to stay on top of communication, whether it’s making it a habit to spend the morning reading and replying to emails or finally setting up your voicemail after putting it off for who knows how long.
5. Have A Long-Term Mindset
Too often, clients seem to have a short-term mindset. Yes, PR firms will do their best to work with you on that one deal or article, but by not continuing to build upon that relationship, you may be doing yourself a disservice. Rather than chopping and changing from one agency to another, it’s often best to stick with the one agency so it get to know your business inside out and can act as an extension of your company.
PR is something that you may need to implement on an ongoing basis, so it’s important tobuild an ongoing relationship so you can continue to leverage one another. When it comes to pitching your news stories, a PR professional who has worked with you consistently will have the know-how to craft an angle that has all the ingredients to help you go viral and gain global media coverage, which can help you reach new markets over time.
These five strategies can help you, as a client, make the most of your relationship with a PR agency so it can do its best work for you. And that is what maximizing your relationship with a PR firm is all about.
“Originally written by Adrian Falk for Forbes”