On this week’s episode of the PROFIT BusinessCast, Alyssa Lioutas and Jennifer Love, partners at Toronto-based Duet Public Relations, give out tips on when companies should consider hiring a PR firm and how to know if you’re getting what you need once you do.
So, how do you choose a PR firm from the sea of supposed PR pros out there?
- Look at their image. If there’s sloppy work on their website and they don’t know how to speak with you on the phone, then that’s how they’re going to represent your business.
- Look at their portfolio. You may turn to someone with less experience in exchange for a great deal, but you want to at least see that they’ve been able to achieve results with a company similar to yours
- Chemistry. Most firms will have a website boasting their various successes. In the end, trust your gut. And make sure the person who sold you on the agency–the one you trust–is the person you’ll be working with, not another account rep.
Once you’ve signed up with an agency, what are some red flags that they’re not getting the right results?
You may get a bump of press initially, but then things become stale, say Lioutas and Love. You should see results at the three month mark, and again at six months and a year. You should expect a quarterly report with solid numbers showing your ROI. For solid results, it takes time: you won’t see a big jump in the first 3 months. But there should be consistent growth. If things are tapering off, you need to have a conversation with your PR pro.
That said, there’s some work required on your end to make this work. If you don’t have time to feed your PR pros interesting things about your company and build a relationship with them so that they get what you do, it won’t work.
Why would you choose to outsource versus using your in-house communications team? And how do you find these firms? Listen to the podcast to find out. Just click on the iTunes icon below.