Are you looking for a public relations (PR) agency to work with to improve your brand recognition and the reputation of your business?
With good PR being so crucial to a business, finding the right PR agency is incredibly important – so it’s not a decision to take lightly.
To help you make the best decision and find the right agency for you and your business, here is 5 tips to help you choose a new PR agency:
Work with a PR agency with experience in your industry
It’s more important you work with a PR agency that has experience in your industry than one that is close to you or meets any other criteria.
For example, if you’re a startup, look for a startup PR agency with experience working with startups. There are unique challenges that every type of company in every industry faces, finding an agency with experience tackling those challenges is invaluable.
If you can also find an agency that is local to you, that’s an added bonus. For example, if you’re in London and you’re marketing to your local area, finding a PR agency in London is also going to give you an advantage.
Know your budget
PR is a service that can easily be scaled and just as easily rack up some huge costs. Knowing what your budget for PR services is is not only good business practice, it will also help narrow down the field in terms of agencies you can work with,
Having a lower budget doesn’t necessarily mean you’re going to get a worse service. Obviously, an agency will not be able to allocate as much time to working with you though.
PR is something you can scale up at any time. Start with a budget you’re comfortable with, and I’m sure the agency you’re working with will be able to increase the work they’re doing as you’re able to allocate more to PR in the future.
Look through their portfolio
The PR industry is very much out in the public eye, that’s that nature of the business. For this reason, any prospective agencies should be able to show you their body of work and point to examples of work they’ve done.
When you find an agency you’re interested in learning more about or working with, be sure to look through their portfolio of work.
Look for examples of work that would translate well into your industry, or that you think would apply to your business. This gives you a starting point to explain what you’re looking for, and also some reassurance they are going to be a good fit.
On the other hand, if you can’t find any examples of work that come close to what you’re looking for, you know that you will not be a good fit with the agency.
Look for reviews and testimonials
It’s difficult to find the right PR agency, or any service provider for that matter without giving them a trial.
The best you can do is to find reviews and testimonials from costumes who have worked with them and pay attention to what they’re saying about the agency.
You’ll have to do some searching. Don’t go by the testimonials on an agency’s website or any platforms they recommend. Use Google to look for independent reviews.
If you can’t find any, it’s not always a red flag. Not many customers are willing to leave a positive review, or the agency might be fairly new. If you find a lot of negative reviews, however, this is a red flag.
Meet with agencies and interview them
The final tip, and possibly the most important one is to meet with an agency and interview them – as opposed to just sitting back and letting them interview you.
Go into the meeting with plenty of questions written down. Keep in mind that they need you more than you need them, so don’t feel bad about grilling them with loads of questions.
It’s important that you feel confident and comfortable that the agency you choose is the best possible fit for you and your business. Whatever that means you need to hear, that’s what you need to ask them.