Whilst public relations firms carry out similar tasks and responsibilities, there is no one-size-fits-all approach which is taken so you need to make sure that you spend some time finding the right PR firm for you, and one which will meet your expectations and deliver what you need them to for your business. The range of PR firms is huge, fro great teams like to some of the more shady firms. This is why you need to ensure that you are looking for the right things in a PR firm and here are some of the key components which will help you decide whether or not a certain company is for you.
A great reputation is going to be absolutely essential when looking for a PR firm because the truth is that there are many out there which only talk the talk, but cannot walk the walk. Remember what a PR agency does, it makes sense that they would be able to promote themselves in a positive manner. It is up to you however to scratch beneath the surface and find out exactly what the PR firm has done in the past, and how good their track record really is.
When it comes to PR firms there are no ‘Jack of all trades’ and those who do promise to be able to cover every industry and sector, will have categories within their team who focus on certain specializations. If you are in the tech sector then there is little to no point in trying to work with a PR firm who have a speciality in finance, or visa versa. What makes PR firms so good is their industry knowledge and their list of contacts, as well as their ability to speak to your market. If they are not specialized in the industry which you are working in, they won’t be able to work in your best interests.
An accusation which is leveled at many PR firms is that they are not transparent enough with their clients and often have a ‘we’ll get it done’ mentality rather than explicitly mapping out what they will do for you and how. As a customer however it is your right to understand just what you are spending your money on which is why transparency is going to be a key attribute of any PR agency which you are planning to work with. Sit down with any PR firm that you are considering working with and ensure that they are fully transparent in what they are telling you that they can do for you.
A common trait of many poor PR firms is that they completely lack customer service, many think that the job they are doing for you means that they don’t have to give you the full service but this is rubbish and you should expect a PR firm to care about you and to show the very best service. If you meet up with a rude firm then move on to the next one.