Thinking about signing up to a PR agency but not sure whether to take the plunge? Our guide will help you decide with 6 easy steps to determine if you’re ready to take your PR game to the next level.
Signing with a PR agency is a big step in any business. While some brands are ready for PR agencies straight away, for the majority it’s a business milestone, a sign that your brand has reached the next stage of its life. Like any investment, a PR agency requires plenty of thought, reflection and consideration.
Jumping in before you’re ready can bring adverse results and negative experiences, affecting your sales, your passion and your bank balance. However, if the timing is right, a PR agency can be a godsend, a team of highly trained professionals who have the contacts, the experience and the know-how to take your brand up a notch.
Not sure whether to take the plunge? Fear not! We’ve put together six key points to help you figure out if a PR agency is the right move for your business!
You’re ready for a PR agency if you’re ready to let go.
With any small business, there’s separation anxiety. Learning how to let go and delegate jobs can be difficult for even the savviest of business owners. But just like watching your first born disappear through that kindergarten door, there comes a time when you need to delegate certain jobs to the experts. Handing over the reins isn’t easy and can be traumatic if the timing isn’t right.
PR agencies know what they’re doing and they won’t be afraid to tell you either. If you’re not ready to take advice or hear feedback on your PR strategies, you might want to hold off on signing that agency. Keep in mind that letting go will never be a walk in the park, you’ll need to trust in the experts and go with your gut!
You’re ready for a PR agency if you have the budget.
For most brands, the $$$$ is the biggest thing standing in the way of a PR agency. Like anything, expertise comes at a cost. If you’re hiring an Australian firm, you can expect to pay upwards of $10, 000 per month. While this price gets you a lot of inclusions, it is still a hefty sum for small businesses to fork out.
Keep in mind that PR is a marathon, you’ve got to be in it for the long haul and won’t reap rewards overnight.
Before you sign that contract, talk to an accountant or work the expenditure into your budget to make sure you have the funds to commit long term.
You’re ready for a PR agency if you have the time.
If you’ve been doing your PR yourself, you’ll be eye-rolling at this one. Surely having someone else take over will be a breeze compared to what you’ve been doing?
While you’ll certainly save on time you would’ve been spending chasing media contacts and drafting media releases, PR agencies come with experts. These experts will want to know your company inside and out so you’ll have to be prepared for meetings, emails and telephone conversations.
They also know what the media need, and will be on your back to make sure they get it – and fast.
If you’re not available, you’ll need to make sure there’s a go-to person in your company who an agency can contact 24/7 for questions, comments or quotes for stories, features and press releases.
You’re ready for a PR agency if you’ve done the hard yards.
One thing no PR agency will appreciate is landing a new client only to figure out they haven’t got their you-know-what together. Handing your PR over to the experts means you’re not in the driver’s seat anymore. There’ll be a team of people working on your account and they need to know what to do with it. You need to have a crystal-clear idea of what your brand is and where you want to take it. Make sure you’ve set out your target audience, goals, competition and your mission statement before approaching any agencies!
You’re ready for a PR agency if you’ve got a purpose.
When we need new clothes, we can tell. Bulging buttons or gaping waistlines are a clear indication that our outfits are no longer a good fit. The same approach can be applied for PR. If you’ve been doing your own PR, you’ll know when you’re starting to outgrow it.
Are you dreaming bigger and aiming higher? Thinking up crazy campaigns or intensive strategies that you don’t have the manpower or expertise to execute? As your PR strategy starts to grow, so does your need for an agency.
Having stories to tell or campaigns to run is always useful when you sign onto an agency. PR companies will want you to give them pitch-able content that they can send the media on your behalf. Already having those in the bank is a sign that you’re ready for someone you take over.
You’re ready for a PR agency if you’ve found the right fit.
If you think you’re ready for an agency, it’s important that you find the right one for your business. You and your agency need to work together. You have to trust that they know what they’re doing and are taking your business in the right direction. When it comes to selecting your agency, it always helps to find a specialist firm. They’ll have the knowledge and contacts for your industry and are best placed to advise you on strategies and objectives to beat out the competition.
Flaunter’s fave Australian PR agencies
Focusing on fashion, beauty & interiors, these agencies could be the perfect fit for your brand.
Think you’d rather go it alone? Jump on board Flaunter, learn all the terminology that’ll have you sounding like a pro with our PR Dictionary or learn how to measure PR results with our in-depth guide here.
Image credits: Letting go – Nicole Warne for Dolce & Gabbana by Simon Upton (banner); Have the cash – Kate Moss for Vogue by Tim Walker; Rowing by Laurie Bartley; The right fit – Lee Mathews studio by Sean Fennessy.