Thinking about hiring a PR firm? Whether this is a process that you have gone through in the past or your brand new business is looking for experienced PR professionals for the first time, there are certain things that should be considered.
With so many agencies to choose from, it certainly can be an overwhelming process. To provide you with ease before hiring a new agency, we have detailed some factors to consider when vetting potential partners.
Define Your Goal.
Prior to screening agencies that you/your company are considering, define what you’re trying to accomplish. Are you looking for coverage in national publications, or are local outlets more of a target? Are you planning a major launch event? Do you need help with a website redesign? Every agency differs in capabilities, and defining your goals when meeting with an agency for the first time can help everyone better understand if this relationship will be successful.
Ask About their Experience.
Be sure to do your research and ask agencies about their experience. Get to know about their past clients, awards they have won for work they collaborated on, and the experience of individual teams members that will be aiding in the success of your next PR campaign. Even if you are just looking for media relations help, it could be very beneficial to hire an integrated marketing team that can offer counsel on how to roll out your plan in all channels.
To piggyback off past experience and client roster, you want to ensure that the agency you hire holds knowledge in your field/industry. Be sure to ask questions that relate specifically to your industry. It’s so important to keep on top of trending topics, because let’s face it; the rules of the marketing game are continuously changing.
When your future agency provides you with a proposal, please take your time to review! Take a good look at it and determine if the services that they provide are truly what you need. Did they offer a scope of work that seems vague or did they pick on your team’s specific needs and language?
Determine the Size.
You might not think that the size of an agency matters, but it does. A boutique agency could be the perfect fit for a growing brand where the team needs to where many hats, whereas a large agency could prefer working with clients that have already carved out specific job roles.
Establish a Budget.
You must consider price and budget before asking agencies for proposals. After all, if you don’t have a starting point then your search may be never ending! Ask questions and be sure to understand what it is that you’re paying for. Always make sure your agency is being transparent about the service fees and hours that are being put into any given project in a month.