Should I work with a small boutique firm or a large firm? That depends on you, your business/brand, and your wallet. As a small boutique PR firm owner, I can only scream the benefits of working with a company such as myself. Typically with smaller firms, there are no one-fits-all types of PR campaigns – everything is customized to the client. A smaller firm can think faster on their feet, adapt to any situation that can arise and can easily roll with the punches. Smaller PR firms are also less expensive than bigger firms.
What should my expectations be since I have never worked with a PR firm before? First, you need to determine what you want from PR – its not enough to just say “I want to be more successful” – you need to figure out what “success” is to you. Once you’ve figured that out, your PR should take your goals and compile them in order to make a PR plan that is followed for your contract term. He/she should speak with you frequently about what is being done on their end, if your goals have changed/amended, if those goals are being met and if you are happy with what is currently being done. If you are not happy, then they should do whatever they can (within reason) to make you, the client, happy.
I want to hire a PR maven, but my funds are limited. What should I do? It depends on how limited those funds are. Sometimes you can speak with a PR firm and explain your situation – maybe they can offer you less than what they’d offer clients that pay full price, or they can offer you their services ala carte (check B3 Vision Group -for more information on this). With that, you can craft a plan that fits your budget. Are you locked into a long term contract when signing with a PR Firm? Typically, most contracts run from 6 months – 1 year. I personally do not have a contract less than 6 months or longer than 1 year.
Do you offer other services besides PR? I offer business consulting, event planning and management services.
How do I measure my success with a PR firm? First you have to define what “success” is to you. Is it more interviews/features/placements about your brand/business? Is it an increased social media presence? Once you have defined what “success” is to you, your PR practioner should craft a plan to get you to that level of “success”. You know if you are successful according to that plan, and if you met everything on it, or even better if you have surpassed the goals on it.
Thank you Carrie for being a part of our Ask An Expert Series. You can learn more about The B3 Vision Group on their website and Twitter feed. You can contact Carrie via her site if you want to learn more about what she can do for your small business.