Looking to hire a PR Agency but not sure if it’s worth the expense?
Could your business do its own PR?
There are significant benefits to hiring a public relations agency to get your brand properly noticed and trusted. The fundamentals of public relations are fairly simple. However, it takes a lot more than just well written press releases to get it right consistently. You might be able to do your own PR, but do you have the time, resources, dedication and expertise?
So what do you need to factor in when it comes to considering your PR options?
Is time on your side?
There are never enough hours in the day. Ask any brand founder or entrepreneur about time management and that’s probably what they’ll say. And, while it’s true that we all have the same hours in the day as Beyoncé, let’s be realistic. Most of us don’t have a private chef, live-in nanny and a bazillion dollars at our disposal.
Do you have time to spend on marketing efforts? Well, in this day and age you really don’t have a choice. And, do you have the kind of time to build out a creative PR strategy that factors in timelines, deadlines, storylines and that never-ending PR hustle? Probably not.
Then there’s research, curating a distribution list, dealing with inbound press enquiries, monitoring coverage, and so on. It’s more than a full time job for one person.
Keeping one step ahead
Besides PR requiring serious devotion, it’s also a long game. Did you know that monthly magazine titles like Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue all work to a three to four-month lead time? That means if you contact a journalist about a story now and they’re interested in featuring your brand, you’re not going to see it in the mag until three or four months’ time. And, that’s only if they agree to feature you (which is easier said than done).
Then you need to factor in timelines with your ‘pitching’. For example if you’re a beach towel brand that is contacting a features journalist about your brand in December, it might be a missed opportunity. By then, they’ve already sorted their beach accessories pages/shoots and Christmas gift guide pages. You might get lucky to fit some of their other features like travel pages throughout the year. But, ultimately, you’ll want to capitalise on ALL the upcoming opportunities.
If you didn’t know about this, don’t worry, because that’s what a PR professional is for.
Also ask yourself: Is this the best way I should be spending my time? Chances are, you have an expertise in a particular field and if it’s not PR, maybe your time is better spent doing what you know best
The power of creativity
Whether you have a left-sided-brain or a right-sided-brained, PR requires a hell of a lot of creativity. The truth is, sometimes PR pros really do have to polish a turd. Not all brands or announcements are sexy and thus require a bit of creativity to make a journalist want to write about it. The ‘hook’. PR professionals know how to get creative, no matter the brand. PR creativity plays a part in much of a PR professional’s daily work.
Are you ready to sell yourself?
PR professionals are not typically considered to be sales professionals, but if you think about it, we are. Whilst our approach is a lot more nuanced and creative, when you get down to it, we are ultimately selling your story/brand to the media.
Ask yourself if your expertise lies in sales? If the answer is no, consider whether your time is best spent doing that. When you hire a PR agency they will know exactly how to sell to the media with a tailored approach. Not every journalist wants to be ‘sold’ to in the same way. If you don’t know, you don’t know. But as a PR professional, selling you to the media is what we do.
It’s not always what you know…
Yes, in our digital age it’s very easy to find an email address. I’m sure if you did some digging online, you can find the email address for any journalist that ever existed. But that doesn’t mean that if you send them an email, they will actually open your email, or take it seriously.
A proper database of contacts such as ours, contains over 1000 journalists, editors and news desks and is curated efficiently and updated regularly to account for people moving roles. A decent contact list is essential and there’s no shortcut to building it and maintaining it. Sending a pitch email to a journalist can sometimes feel like cold-calling, and not everyone is keen to do that. You can also imagine that sometimes the journalist isn’t that keen to receive your cold-call either. Especially if it’s not formatted in a way that makes their job easy.
That’s where a PR professional such as Proper PR come in. We know exactly what a journalist needs and wants. And, we do everything to ensure it is delivered in the correct way. Sometimes, the correct way isn’t even an email at all. In most cases, we know these journalists and have liaised with them constantly over the years and those journalists get excited to open our emails, or better still, to meet with us face to face.
So, if that email you’re about to send feels like it might not be that well-received, consider leaving the right approach to the experts.
This PR thing isn’t so easy after all, is it?
Hire a PR Agency for specialist expertise
There will always be some tasks in business that need high levels of expertise. Being a business owner doesn’t mean that you will be great at every aspect of the businesses you run.
So, if you hire a PR agency that will enable you to meet your business objectives, month in, month out, build your brand and communicate the positive news, you, can get on with what you do best. We guarantee, it will always be worth it.