This article from PRNews is good advice for anyone considering working with a new PR and/or marketing agency.
While author Sandra Coyle offers some great tips, I thought I would share a few more helpful recommendations based on our experience here at Crossroads PR & Marketing.
- Get input/buy-in at the executive level on goals/objectives and strategies so that everyone is on the same page and marching toward the same measure of success. In that same vein, make sure your agency understands not only marketing’s goals, but also the goals of the company itself – revenue growth, global expansion, acquisition, IPO, investment, etc. And, make sure your agency is aware of all other marketing activities, understands your sales/revenue model, etc. The more they understand your business, they more they can help you grow that business.
- Treat your agency as a strategic partner/counselor vs. just a vendor. You are paying good money for not only deliverables, but also the strategy and guidance your agency can provide based on their years of experience and numerous other client experiences. With that in mind, make your agency isn’t full of “yes” people. While it is nice to have everyone agree with your great ideas, you are paying your agency for that counsel. You want to them to bring fresh perspectives, and to push you to new limits and new possibilities.
- Make sure your agency is capable of developing compelling content. In this day and age, Great PR and marketing starts with great content. Great content should help you achieve your corporate goals – generate sales or business leads, build brand awareness, and educate your audience about your products and services.
- Make sure your agency knows how to monitor, report, analyze and adjust. Your communications roadmap shouldn’t be a one-way street…it needs to be an iterative, continuous cycle. Adjusting and tweaking your strategies, communication channels, messaging, and outreach based on analysis are all part of the process, feeding continuously into the overall roadmap. Your agency should be flexible and nimble. A fast moving company in an ever-changing world needs an agency that can move just as fast.
If you have worked with an agency and/or are thinking about hiring one, I would love your thoughts on advice to consider. It will help your peers find the right agency, and help us build an even better one here at Crossroads.