A well thought out targeted PR campaign will bring business benefits, with leads, more positive awareness, support for sales teams and more. But often companies employing PR agencies come away with a bad taste in their mouths. A prospect who subsequently became a client asked me recently: “so what if you don’t manage to achieve what you put in the proposal?” I told him that if we didn’t think we could do it, we would walk away, but PR is a two way street.
Being 7 miles out of the centre of Birmingham and running a small but thriving PR agency with clients ranging from listed companies to small start ups, I believe that the work we produce and the work of the many PR agencies in Birmingham, Coventry, Solihull and Wolverhampton is just as good and sometimes dare I say better than London based agencies. We’ve turned out some great work for companies from the US, Manchester, London, Bracknell, Germany and Israel…and many other agencies here have national accounts where they gain great coverage and raise brand awareness without having to sit in London.
This is probably a strange question for any PRs reading this, but sometimes we do get the request to have full access to the press lists that we create on behalf of our clients, especially at the end of a project or contract. By full I mean including contact details. Of course like other agencies we agree a tiered press list up front, with title of publication and name of journalist, but not with their numbers, emails, Twitter account and blog details.
The stories of doom and gloom abound: as we start 2009, we are seeing job cuts and businesses going out of business and a general economic slow down. Public relations services as with any marketing services can be the first to be trimmed, subjected to frozen budgets or cut completely. However, PR can benefit companies in a downturn by keeping their profile high, maintaining customer and investor trust, communicating positively with their audiences and keeping the company name in the headlines without the associated high cost of other marketing communications methods. Now is probably the perfect time to reassess any 2009 PR campaign.