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Factors to consider when choosing the right PR agency

If you are ready for PR, finding the right Public Relations agency requires strategic scrutiny. With experience from both in-house roles and running my own PR agency for 10 years, I share insights into the selecting process. This includes essential considerations, from being clear on PR objectives, budgets, and industry expertise to cultivating long-term professional partnerships.

I ran my PR agency, V&VPR, for 10 years, and I am often asked for advice on hiring an agency. Here is my insider scoop on what everyone needs to know before hiring an agency – the good, the bad, and everything you need to look for when hiring a PR agency.

What you need PR for

Determine the purpose of PR for your company, whether it’s a new product launch, brand awareness building, reputation management, or crisis communication. This will guide you to the right agency, as some only specialize in Crisis Comms, for example.

It’s important to ensure that the quality of your product or service is up to scratch. Bad news travels fast, especially with the influence of social media, so it’s crucial to have a quality offering from the start.

What’s your budget

Decent agencies these days won’t consider anything less than SG$6K (US$4,462) per month for at least three months. Those who opt for cheaper options often return when the cheaper agencies fail to deliver.

If you cannot afford an agency yet, there are DIY options to explore, including my Media Insiders Summits and HYOPR teaching PR cohorts. Consider doing some DIY while saving up for a good agency.

Industry experts rule

Choose an agency that specializes in your industry. They should know your market, rivals, and the latest trends to guide you on standing out in the crowd.

Creativity and flexibility

Your agency needs to be creative and flexible in the ever-changing world. Look for testimonials, case studies, and feedback from their clients to see if they possess creativity and adaptability.

Who’s in their black book?

Ask about the media contacts the agency has, as a good agency should have strong media connections. This is an important part of what you’re paying for.

Set expectations and KPIs

Define your expectations and work together to establish sensible KPIs. Focus on SMART goals and objectives instead of outdated metrics like AVE.

Respect the partnership

Treat your agency like a partner and respect their boundaries. Avoid unrealistic, unnecessary deadlines, as they have other clients to juggle.

Understand the process

Get to know the PR process and understand the agency, as this will help in creating effective campaigns.

Account Management 101

Make sure you know who will be managing your account before sealing the deal. Check that the designated person is knowledgeable and capable.

Are they nice people?

Assess the ethical standards and treatment of their team. Consider whether you can work with these people in the long run.

Take your time in the PR agency selection process and prioritize conversations with potential agencies. Your brand’s reputation is at stake, so it’s important to make the right decision.

Image credit: Canva

The post How to select the right PR agency: Key factors to consider appeared first on e27.

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