Traits of a Good PR Agency

September 7, 2017

When it comes to hiring a PR agency in Vancouver, it’s not a “one size fits all” solution. Each firm – and there are many – will offer different approaches to executing similar tasks. To find the right public relations specialist for you, it’s important to look for a few common ties to help narrow it down.

The team at Jelly Marketing – a digital marketing and PR agency in Fort Langley – weighs in with their tips for choosing the agency that’s right for you. Principal at Jelly, Darian Kovacs says the three most important questions right off the bat should be: What’s their track record? Who will be managing your account? What are the goals you’ve both set?

From there, it’s about peeling back the hood and taking a closer look at what makes the team work – and how they will work for you.

1. What’s their vibe?

To get a feel for the PR agency’s ability to produce results, ask which companies they’ve worked with and which case studies they can can share with you. Does the team’s approach fit your company culture and how will they hit your KPI’s to keep you moving forward at a steady pace? If you’re spending good money, ask who and what you’re spending it on.

“Choose a PR agency in Vancouver that has a good reputation because a reputation doesn’t lie!” – Stephanie, PR Coordinator

2. Are they willingly transparent?

A competent public relations specialist should be transparent on their deliverables. This includes being honest about whether or not your requests and expectations are within their capabilities and budget. Transparency is also about knowing your strengths as well as theirs, and trusting them to take the lead.

“Find an agency that can fill in the missing puzzle piece. You obviously want to be able to work together and share similar values, but know what you excel in and what the agency can excel in on your behalf.” – Robyn, Account Manager

3. Do you have shared goals and values?

Transparency, resiliency, and alignment with your company values – these are a few of the traits Jelly’s Account Manager Amaan believes are key components to a strong working relationship.

It’s important to be completely clear on why you hired the PR agency and how success will be measured and evaluated. If you’re a fast-growing business with ambitious plans, it makes sense to work with a PR agency that shares the same values. Your success becomes their success.

4. How strong is their communication?

How quickly do they respond to your calls or emails? Will a member of the team be available right when you need them, and not a few days later? In this fast-moving world of social media, it’s important to be able to react quickly to news both good and bad. You want your chosen PR agency to be your ear to the ground and finger on the trigger at all times.

5. What is their reputation with the media?

Do they have a direct line of communication to specific journalists at various media outlets and publications? Different outlets have varying lead times for their publication deadlines and monthly themes, so it’s important the public relations specialist you’re working with has tabs on this so they can pitch your company when the time is right.

It’s also worth remembering that just because a PR agency in Vancouver sends the press release to all the media outlets you want to appear in, it doesn’t mean they’ll run with your story. Unless it’s advertorial, it’s impossible to guarantee timing or coverage. A large part of public relations is nailing down earned media, which can take time massaging relationships and pitching from various angles.

“A good PR agency excels at building relationships and, thus, a network. With a strong network of relationships, a good PR agency knows which individuals or publicists cover specific industries or topics. They know who to pitch.” – Sullivan, Digital Ads & SEO Coordinator

The process might seem arduous, but once you find a PR agency in Vancouver that truly aligns with who you are and what you want, that’s when the magic happens.

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