Picking the right PR Agency is a big decision as it does not only cost money but it also takes precious time. Time that could have been better used to benefit your business. So before you jump into the formal process, here are questions that you need to ask before hiring a public relations agency.
1. How Are You Going To Measure Your Success?
Before hiring a PR firm, you would like to know how they’ll measure the success of their campaigns. And it would be best to hire someone who looks beyond those measures and work with an agency who will help your business grow, such as tracking how much prospects and traffic to your website have grown, how well are leads converting to your product and services and others.
2. Which Platform Will Help Me Reach My Target Audience Best?
Assuming that you have sat down and did an assessment with your prospect agency. The next question would be whether the PR agency knows precisely which media channel can best reach your target demographic. But you would also want a firm that has at least an experience with the old and new media especially if you plan to work on a variety of campaigns.
3. Have You Worked On Campaigns In My Industry?
You would benefit well if you work with a firm that already has an experience with your type of business. You can ask to see the case studies they’ve done with their past clients and find out if the people who managed those accounts are still with the agency because you may want to work with them.
4. Who Will Be Working Directly On MY Account?
If a PR firms pitches on your business, they will always send in their best people. But, you will probably work with their other level employees making it important to ask who you will be working with day-to-day and spend time with before deciding if you want to make a contract with an agency.
5. Am I Locked Into A Long-Term Contract?
A lot of PR firms will require an upfront payment from you in order to avail their service. But, you can definitely ask and require for a review on their performance at least in the first three month. Because running campaigns may take skill but it doesn’t take too long to notice some improvements on your metrics.
6. How Much Do You Charge For Specific Services?
PR experts typically offer a range of services that’s based on your budget. And some offers packages while others ensures that you only get what you want done for your business.
7. Do You Provide Media Coaching?
Let’s say that your company is asked for an interview with the media. Find out if the firm also offers trainings or advice on how to do these interviews or ask if they will refer you to an experienced media coach.
8. What Is Your Social Media Expertise?
Whoever you choose to hire must be well-versed in social media. A PR agency that only knows traditional media is missing on a lot. So you’d want someone who can be interactive with your promotions and develop contests that are done online.
9. How Are You Going To Communicate With Me?
Always clarify the time or schedules you are able to contact your project campaign managers. Will you be able to call them on weekend? If they are on leave, who is the next key person you could talk to?
And during emergencies that happens on a weekend, how fast can they provide a remedy to the situation?
10. What Do You Need From Me To Make This Relationship Work?
Don’t fall into the mindset that when you hire a PR agency, your workload will be removed. It’ll be lightened but you still would want updates and find out what commitments they’ll need from you in order to have them do what they need to do.