I know what it's like to be the client of a public relations agency. As a senior corporate communications executive for more than a decade, I've led public relations campaigns of all sizes and budgets.
In some years, I managed major product launches for Fortune 1000 companies and spent half a million dollars or more with national public relations agencies such as Fleishman-Hillard and Burson-Marsteller. In other years, such as when I founded a technology startup, I operated on a shoestring -- doing virtually all the dirty work myself and using PR firms only for specific small projects.
Some of my relationships with public relations agencies have been highly successful; in other cases, I had to pull the plug when I realized I wasn't getting what I'd paid for.
If you are currently an agency client, what criteria should you use to assess your firm's performance? Or, as a potential public relations agency client, what criteria should you use when selecting a firm?
I've designed PR agency assessment tools to help answer these questions. Whether you are on the client side, with a PR agency, or in the news media, I welcome your input. I'm happy to expand on these based on your suggestions.
Trust expert Scott Baradell is CEO and founder of Idea Grove. Idea Grove helps its clients secure trust at scale through its unique Grow With TRUST approach. Scott is an established authority on trust and editor of the online publication Trust Signals, as well as author of the upcoming book Trust Signals: Brand Building in a Post-Truth World. Idea Grove celebrated its 15th anniversary in 2020, earning honors including the 2020 Pegasus Award for Small Agency of the Year, being named a Top 200 B2B service provider by Clutch, and ranking in the top 25 tech agencies in the U.S. by O'Dwyer's. Scott has an Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) from the Public Relations Society of America and speaks on PR and marketing topics at industry events nationwide.