With so many companies and agencies out there vying for your attention, it can be tough to know how to find the right public relations agency for your business. The truth is, there is no one-size-fits-all answer—the best PR agency for you will depend on a number of factors specific to your company and your industry. But there are some general tips that agencies like Interdependence PR say you should keep in mind as you start your search.
Define Your Goals
Before you start looking for a public relations agency, it’s important to have a clear understanding of what your goals are. Do you want to improve brand awareness? Drive traffic to your website? Increase sales? Once you know what you’re hoping to achieve, you can start looking for an agency that specializes in helping companies like yours reach those specific goals. For example, if you’re looking to improve brand awareness, you’ll want to look for an agency with experience in media relations and event planning. If you’re looking to drive traffic to your website, on the other hand, you’ll want to find an agency with experience in search engine optimization and social media marketing. By taking the time to understand your goals upfront, you’ll be able to find the right PR agency much easier.
Determine Your Budget
PR agencies typically charge either an hourly rate or a flat fee per project. If you have a limited budget, you’ll want to look for an agency that charges hourly rates—that way, you’ll only have to pay for the time they spend working on your account. If money is no object, a flat fee may be the way to go.
Check Their References
Any good PR agency should be able to provide references from past and present clients. When you’re talking to references, be sure to ask about the results the agency was able to achieve and whether they were happy with the level of service they received. Also, don’t be afraid to ask for additional references if the ones the agency provides don’t seem relevant to your situation.
Ask About Their Experience
Ideally, you want to work with an agency that has experience working with companies in your industry. They’ll already have a good understanding of the challenges you’re facing and will know what kind of strategies are likely to be effective. If an agency doesn’t have any experience working in your industry, that’s not necessarily a dealbreaker—just be sure they’re willing to put in the extra effort needed to get up to speed on things.
Make Sure They’re a Good Fit Personality-wise
Last but not least, it’s important to make sure you mesh well with the people at the PR agency you’re considering working with. After all, you’ll be working closely with them on a regular basis, so it’s important that everyone gets along and shares similar values. To get a feel for whether or not an agency is a good fit personality-wise, try meeting with them in person before making any decisions.
If you’re considering hiring a PR agency, these tips should help you narrow down the field and find the perfect fit for your company. Keep in mind that the best agencies are those that are willing to invest the time necessary to learn about your company and your industry—so don’t hesitate to ask lots of questions during the hiring process!