In my previous pieces for the Business Barn I’ve looked at how you can go about doing your very own PR, working to publicise the very business you’ve built up from scratch and know inside out. I’ve given out some of my very own business know-how and secrets to help you find out how to write the perfect press release, pitch to journalists and hopefully place that all-important coverage.
So why do people invest in PR agencies and consultants instead of carrying out their own publicity outreach? Well, there are numerous upsides to working with a dedicated PR that will help you achieve your business aims more quickly and could help you at a time of need, so let’s take a little look at what they are…
Specialist industry knowledge
Most PR consultants have focused on a specific sector of business, or several closely-connected sectors. This enables them to develop a full understanding of the terminology involved and get to know key organisations, events, trends, issues and legislation that can impact the way you talk about a business. I work with rural, equine and canine businesses and get to immerse myself in these sectors all day long. I can help businesses build an integrated communications strategy and then help them smash those goals with target social media outreach and PR coverage in their industry magazines. Which leads me on to my next point…
Relationships with journalists
PRs should have a bulging little black book of press contacts that they have built up a good working relationship with. Journalists get an awful lot of emails and calls from people with news about products and services, hoping to get their attention for some coverage in an article. If a journalist knows that a PR has clear, concise and timely information about good products and always sends over good images, they are far more likely to open that email and take a look. I have contacts at all of the magazines in the industries my clients operate in, so I can get a quick, efficient return on the time I have spent sending out press releases.
See also: Do you want to do your own PR?
A different perspective
If you’ve built up your business from scratch, been part of a family business since you can remember or are simply very passionate about where you work, the chances are that you’re a little too close to see the bigger picture. Someone who isn’t part of your business, but still knows and understands what you do and the industry you operate in, will be able to help you with key strategic decisions and can push back when it’s not the right time to publicise something.
Expert in seeing the story in everything
When you spend all day long looking for the most newsworthy angle in a product, thinking about what’s the latest trend to link a business to or writing punchy headlines, you’ll be able to spot the PR opportunity in anything. Good, experienced PRs develop an instinct for the intriguing and a nose for a story and your business will benefit from that if you work with them.
Crisis communications advice
Some businesses never need to worry about negative press coverage, but plenty do and it’s often for reasons out of their control. Perhaps a trusted supplier had been misleading you and others about the provenance of their product, or an employee has been posting messages on social media that affect your business negatively? Your PR consultant has those key industry contacts, what they say will be taken seriously and they can advise you on what to do next so that you don’t get more bad press coverage. That can be worth its weight in gold!
Tara is our traditional PR and marketing partner, keep checking back here for more.